The lush green open spaces, decorated with spring leaves singing the songs of praise in unison with uniform buildings standing as tough as Himalayas is the most delightful example of architectural intervention in natural manner.
Any guesses which place are we talking about?
This is all about the city beautiful- CHANDIGARH!
A glimpse on how it came into existence…
Towards the midnight on 15th August 1947, Jawaharlal Nehru came up with his speech “Tryst with Destiny” and soon his vision to build a new capital city met the expertise of Le Corbusier ( French Architect), giving birth to Chandigarh.
Chandigarh was based on Nehru’s principle;
“Let this be a new town, symbolic of freedom of India unfettered by the traditions of the past, an expression of the nation’s faith in the future”.
The features of Chandigarh architecture were young, are young, and will always be young. Let’s have a sneak peek into the some lesser known features:
- Le Corbusier and his love for ‘nature’
The three pillars on which all the architecture of Le Corbusier stands is: Light, Space and Greenery. The study on sun and wind was always the stepping stone for all his designs in Chandigarh. As per him, the land always injects nourishment to the soul.
The dominance of open space can be well observed in the city. A hierarchy of open space was set, keeping leisure valleys at city level, parks at community level and courtyards became part of front and rear side of homes.
Gigantic Himalayas and vast fields became a source of inspiration for him. It was his love to this scenic beauty that Capitol Complex was his gift to the Himalayas. Capitol Complex is one of the UESCO World Heritage site.
His focus on these three pillars made it an environmental friendly city.
- Symmetric Design for Residence To Create Harmony
Constitution of India gifted Right to Equality as a fundamental right to all its citizens. The same equality can be seen in residences of Chandigarh. Chandigarh adopted a mechanism called ‘Frame Control’.
Under this, the symmetry in design of residences was maintained. Line and height of building and use of building materials is fixed. Certain standard in size of gates and windows are to be followed. Users are given the leverage to create the interiors of their dwellings as per their requirements. Garden for each and every residence is the biggest positive of Chandigarh architecture.
Everything in life has to have balance and to make sure that the environment looks organized and balanced; Le Corbusier hit the right note by maintaining the uniformity in design of residences.
- Relationship between Cosmos and Man
“To introduce the sun is the new and most imperative duty of the architect.”- Le Corbusier
The buildings of Chandigarh are designed in such a way that the sunlight penetrates into it even in sunlight scarce season. The incoming sunlight and heat was to be tackled in a manner such that the day hours could be efficiently used in working. Keeping the ‘Law of sun’ as a base, in public buildings and dwellings, some much needed interventions were made.
Chajjas, Jharokahs and Verandahs are provided to fight such environmental problems. The use of perforated shading screens in buildings of Chandigarh controlled the sunlight, making it softer and providing cool daylight.
- Colorful and Vibrant Chandigarh
Bright colors used on the walls of Chandigarh buildings are inspired from the landscape, clothing and paintings of ancient India. These colors used in architecture of buildings made Chandigarh always young, open to give and open to receive.
The best part about this architecture is that nothing has affected its essence, and it promises to remain young in the coming years too. Even the present societies (which have been building or are under construction) reflect the fundamentals of this amazing architecture.
Nehru and Le Corbusier had a power to see the invisible in their vision which is still alive and can be felt in the present architecture. Their vision will be passed from generation to generation, thereby creating a never-ending virtuous cycle.