Creative Consortium

A.W.H.O Housing Project

Project Location :Panchkula, Haryana
Project Status : Completed (2002 -2008)

How “Creative Consortium”, a Panchkula Based Architectural Firm took up the challenge of designing a large housing complex for the Army.

Evolving a satisfying design for the Group Housing Scheme for the Indian Army involved tremendous challenges and very, very interesting work in order to arrive an optimal solution. There were various factors which had an impact, and made the going very tough, though in the beginning, it looked like just another group housing project. The irregular shape of site measuring 13 Acres, planning of 556 Dwelling Units in 4 different categories of housing in close proximity to each other, and provision of support facilities like Officers’ Club, open and covered parking while complying with building regulations & bye-laws. With the background of Chandigarh and Panchkula Housing profile having received countrywide acceptance for their style and exclusive taste, and the enthusiastic living traditions of the Army personnel, the design track became all the more complicated.

Sustainable Approach
Vast experience of Creative consortium team came in good stead, to overcome these challenges. Latest technology was imbibed into the design and plan of the campus so as to enable it to be in sync with utilization of alternate sources of energy, eco friendly materials, conservation of resources and interesting built-up form harmonizing with multi-functional landscape designed for functionality, aesthetics and economy. Creative consortium was pioneers in north India in application of “Water sensitive Urban planning” in their projects. Multi-functional Landscapes work for rain water filtration, rainwater harvesting as well as social integration civic landscapes with green lungs.

Site Setting Responsiveness
After a thorough study of the site, it was concluded that the narrow strip of the site should be the guiding dimension and the maximum utilization of this land area is essential for achieving required F.A.R. while achieving large green open spaces in the main trapezoidal portion of the site. The poor connection of the trapezoidal chunk and linear narrow strip of the site was tackled by locating the Officer’s Club between the two zones which also gave it a central location, and also the resulting low height of the club imparted a feeling of space in the total layout of the project.

Orientation, Light & natural Ventilation
The common considerations involved in the design of each category of dwelling unit were studied in detail in order to achieve uniform standards for the entire housing scheme. Suitable orientation for optimum light, ventilation and temperature control, fine principle to achieve formal and informal living areas in Dwelling Unit privacy, security and ideally located common services for ease of approach and social integration were the uniform standards achieved for all types of flats.

Façade Treatment
Façade treatment was worked out carefully in order to impart distinguished entity to each category so that they could stand apart, yet harmonize well .Interesting uses of balcony projections were exploited to break the monotony of box like feeling and for climate control and multifunctional outdoor spaces.

Climatic responsiveness – natural Ventilation & courtyard planning
In the design process, considerations of hot & humid climate of Panchkula attained priority in order to create comfortable living conditions. Cross ventilation was considered as essential and was integrated into the design at various stages .To begin with every unit was designed as a corner unit allowing for cross ventilation. Then again, since the dwelling unit is lockable at the grill level only, the air could flow through the house to the courtyard. Further, in a hot place like Panchkula, courtyards bring extraordinary benefits – trapping cool overnight air providing comfort in hot afternoons. The placement of doors and windows facilitates cross ventilation, where in the air enters from outside, passes on to the courtyard and then virtually funnels the hot air up keeping the whole complex fresh and cool.

Single unit was designed for each category which could be suitably and advantageously grouped into a cluster. The cluster was then repeated into a row to formulate an interesting and functional layout.

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“Throughout in this process of evolution of design right from its concept to completion it has been a wonderful experience where every space has been created to inspire the client and meet their aspirations and enhance their experience of living”
– Ar. Madhu Garg. (C.E.O,Creative Consortium)

Recipient of NIRMAN RATTAN AWARD in 1995 for her outstanding performance in architecture and interior designing and excellence IN CREATIVITY award by Society Interior Magazine in 2003 and Rashtriya Rattan award in 2008.