This mixed-use development near Kamla Nehru Park, Pune close to the city centre proved to be a great test bed of ideas in architecture for the practice.
The site was an area of existing residential apartments whose residents had to be accommodated in the scheme without displacing them from the site. After exploring various options, AVA architects came up with an idea to construct around the existing building and go up vertically.
Drawing strongly on the architectural language of the nineteen eighty’s buildings in the context, the scheme proposed active the ground floor abutting both streets it faces. The glazed facade increased transparency of the structure – full of light and shade and a vibrant meeting place appropriate to the context.
The proposed mixed scheme of commercial and residential spaces, with retail, cafes and showrooms at ground floor – intended to bring new life to the area. Ground level space was largely public and it offered a vision of a new urbanism, where public and private domains were well balanced - commercial profit combined with public benefits on a huge site.
A central pedestrian connection links two adjacent structures within this project. The first wing was built with portal frames over and around the existing structure containing mostly residences. The second wing was constructed without restraints on the corner of the plot abutting two roads. This contains offices and retail areas. Both wings are linked by a horizontal corridor that also doubles up as an entrance arch to the development. A common religious structure is provided on the rooftop for communal gathering space within the building. It is noteworthy to realize that all existing trees have been preserved in the planning and execution of this building.
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