A built-form constantly negotiates the levels of a sloping site to remain integrated with the surrounding landscape to create ease of access for patients.
What is the project about?
The Mahatma Gandhi Antarrashtriya Hindi Vishwavidyalaya is located in the geographic center of India – Wardha. The campus included both institutional and residential facilities for the students and faculty. The schools are positioned on the higher plateau and the residential areas on the lower slopes of the site.
Sited amongst the housing community, the health centre is envisioned as a single linear unit with three smaller blocks within. These are connected to the road by a ramp that transcends the constant slope of the site. The first block has public programs such as the pharmacy and the consulting room; the second block is the observation room for five patients and the third block is an ancillary utility block that houses the nurses’ area and a kitchen. The porous waiting area in the centre acts as a bridge that overlooks both the hill above and the town on the lower levels beyond the site connecting the three blocks.
The institutional program provides for variation, non-linearity, change & flexibility through the integration of non-programmatic spaces such as verandahs, walkways and an outdoor terrace. The site and its surroundings offered clues to the positioning of the building and the creation of in-between and peripheral spaces. The organization and orientation are primarily determined by the undulating nature of the site. Apart from stairs, landscaped ramps serve as transition elements between these programs, thereby integrating the landscape as an essential part of the design in relation to the built form.
The three blocks are treated with exposed rubble masonry externally connecting the singular sloping roof, with its four corners at different heights. This helps achieve high spatial volumes as well as adequate light and ventilation within the structure. The built form constantly negotiates the levels of a sloping site to remain integrated with the surrounding landscape.
Project Funded by
University Grants Commission
Client: Mahatma Gandhi Antarrashtriya Hindi Vishwavidyalaya
Designers: MO-OF/ Mobile Offices
Executing Agency: Central Public Works Department
Structural Consultants : Parag Nerlekar
MEP Consultants: Sheth Techno. Consultants
Quantity Surveyors: Dongre Associates
What is the impact?
The campus is situated on the periphery of a small town, Wardha, and this building serves as a primary health center for the entire campus community. It has been situated centrally and has been integrated within the context to create universal access for all people. The campus had a challenging terrain and the building design negotiated the slopes to create ease of access for patients.
The central void is a flexible space that invites the community within. The waiting area in the void transforms into a social space for different activities such as health awareness camps and other common student activities at different times in the day.
The strategies used for the design and selection of materials emerges from an environmental concern. The use of fly-ash bricks, random rubble exposed masonry of locally available basalt stone, minimizing cut and fill, retaining the trees on-site all allow for a building type that sits gently within its context. The building becomes a prototype for the larger shared programs within the housing area by creating a minimal imprint.
Images by MO-OF/Mobile Offices | © all rights reserved
Drawings by MO-OF/Mobile Offices | © all rights reserved
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About MO-OF/ Mobile Offices:
MO-OF/ Mobile Offices is a design practice set up in 2001 in Mumbai which focuses on Architectural, Urban and Interior design. The studio is led by two principal architects Manisha Agarwal (Cornell, NY; C.E.P.T. India) and Shantanu Poredi ( AA, London; C.E.P.T. India).
The firm has completed projects of various program categories such as educational campus, hospitality, residential communities, offices, exhibitions and healthcare.
MO-OF’s interest in architecture and design stems from the debate on the evolving cities and the potential it offers a designer. The engagements with communities, the context the works are situated in, create design frameworks for the architectural rhetoric. The primary issues that the practice engages with are social, cultural, environmental sustainability – these issues usher explorations that transform building types and typologies.
Ideas are tested through the various competitions the practice engages with at all levels. This has led to an opportunity for realizing some of the largest projects of the practice. The firm has anticipated research areas that have raised curiosity with diverse subjects and ushered the practice towards an unsolicited architectural realm. The belief is that a repository of design knowledge is available to each member of the team working towards growth within the firm’s life cycle. The essence of the practice is embedded in the idea of collaboration with diverse co-creators. The practice has been informed by pedagogy and academic research through a multidisciplinary approach to design and its execution.