Client : Hand in Hand India, Kanchipuram

Services : Design & Construction Management

The Design Brief

To create an environmentally sustainable learning centre :

The requirement was to create an environmentally sustainable model of development in Kanchipuram, reflecting the ethos of Hand-in-Hand.

A contemporary and unique design :

A design that would stand apart, have global standards and yet reflect the rich cultural heritage of the people and place served by the organization. A design that would not detract from surrounding rural ambience.

The extremely linear site presented itself as a challenge as well as an opportunity. It allowed us to provide a continuous and interesting line of sight through the campus.

The continuous physical and visual access through the campus served as a central spine. The location of the open-air theatre and pond ensured a cross breezeway from the south.

Discovery Sessions

Extensive interactions with staff from Hand in Hand to understand their requirements for spaces and functioning.

Surroundings Study

Visit to the villages around the site to get an idea of current population, their economy and of course their construction.

Visits to other learning centres

Visits to a few other institutions in Chennai to observe and gather information on their facilities and spatial planning guidelines.

Evolution of proposed design concept and presentation of the same to all the stakeholders of the organization. A process that was interactive and iterative.

Custom made façade tiles designed from patterns that reflected the global identity of the organisation were a key part of the aesthetics. Exposed masonry and interesting archways were integrated into the circular built form.

Sustainable Excellence through architecture for The Academy for Social Entrepreneurship has been achieved through sensitivity to the following aspects :

Environmental protection during Construction : Preservation of top soil and effective site barricading.

Sensitivity to Site : A continuous line of sight through the property with adequate openings along the prevailing wind direction.

Good Indoor Environment Quality : Landscaped yards, balconies and a central courtyard for continuous physical and visual access to the outdoors.

Energy Efficiency : A central courtyard for exhaust of warm air combined with adequate shading and energy efficient fixtures.

Water Conservation : Low flow water fixtures to reduce demand on waste water treatment systems.

Sustainable resource use : Exposed hollow clay block walls to create a unique aesthetic and save on manufacture and cost of additional material.

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