1, Bhoomi Apartments, 15, Motinagar Society, Mahalaxmi cross roads, Paldi,
Telefon +91 79 26641858
Fax +91 79 26612196
Meghal Arya and Vijay Arya
Arya Architects office in Ahmedabad, photographs © Ariel Huber
Indian architecture, historically, has been an inclusive realm whereas, in recent times, public spaces are getting to be more exclusive. The larger body of our work constitutes projects that are in the public realm in an attempt to bring back this domain through the architecture. We attempt to provide equity; to make an architecture that is inclusive and gives dignity to common people. These are spaces that the most citizens encounter, visit, and inhabit. Inserted within the existing fabric, the projects draw upon experiences that are diverse and complex, yet the spaces are simple, distinct but cognizable. In today’s mobile lives, architecture becomes a platform for events and occurrences, chance meetings and social interactions. Architecture is seen not as formal construction but creation of places. There is a strong belief in the social and cultural interaction of architecture and awareness that architecture is not an autonomous profession. The built form is dependent on strong concepts manifest in simple, fluid spaces that form the spatial experience. The projects that are in a strong natural landscape develop as a dialogue with their setting, intended to fuse the inside – outside relationship into an ambiguous middle ground.
The search is for an architecture that interprets ideas from the modernist traditions and local culture. Through the evident diversity and variety, there is a sense of continuity that is embedded in the semi-open spaces which are core to Indian architecture. Our architecture evolves from an exploration of these spaces that are appropriate in terms of climate, are inclusive, allow for spillovers, are flexible, transparent and yet carefully defined. Sustainable development involves taking a holistic view of design hinged on the idea of appropriate, integrated with spatial quality. Light and climatic conditions are important considerations. The location - historical and socio-cultural - of the site comes into play while designing. There is a regular interaction on the site, an appreciation of the available technology, its innovative use, and an exploration of materials.
In a relatively short span of time, the office has realized a range of projects that is fairly diverse starting from the adaptive re-use of a old haveli in Rajasthan to contemporary institutional buildings in rural areas to urban inserts in the form of bus stations for a very successful rapid transit system. We have dealt with urban fabrics in historical areas as well as the expanse of nature. Architecture for transit is a niche area of work where we integrate broad planning policies with localized specific conditions and culture.
Academics and research are tools to move between the abstract and the real, to explore for the appropriate. Each project is looked at with its possibilities and merits but also with our own philosophy running through as a common thread. So, while there is no apparently singular formal language, each of the works addresses its immediate physical and cultural contexts. A strain of continuity is derived from the manner of making.
We work in the spirit of collaboration with a creative partnership with experts like engineers, lighting experts and a host of other consultants. Making physical models is seen as a primary medium to explore the potential of the design. The computer is central to the new epoch and it is used in its capacity as a tool towards development of design.
2000 First Prize: Jindal Stainless steel award for innovative bus shelter
2001 Participated in HUDCO National competition for disaster resistant housing
2003 Finalists in limited invited competition for the NSCBI International airport Terminal, Kolkata
2003 Finalists in Freedom Park Competition, Bangalore
2006 Third Prize: Corporate House for INSDAG, Kolkata
2007 Finalists in limited invited competition for the domestic airport Terminal, Kolkata
About Our Work
May-June 2000, Architecture + Design (A+D)
April 2010, Design Observer, http://places.designobserver.com/entry.html?entry=12918
May 2010, Spade Vol 2
May 2010, India by Design, http://indianbydesign.wordpress.com/2010/05/
January 2002, Thematic Space in Indian architecture
June 2005, Design Cultures: the ethos of urban space Indian Architect and Builder (IA&B)
June 2008, Surreal Realism (travelogue) Indian Architect and Builder (IA&B)
December 2010, Architecture of Royal Camp AADI Centre, Ahmedabad, India
2000 National award: Jindal stainless steel award for the most innovative bus shelter design
2001 Commendation from the Chief Minister and Police department for valuable services provided in upgrading the Command and Control Centre, Ahmedabad
2003 National award: J. K. Cement state Young Architect of the year award for the reconstruction work at Samakhiali, Kutch, Phase 1
2004 National award: Indian Institute of Architects Award for Public buildings for the reconstruction work at Samakhiali, Kutch, Phase 1 & 2
2006 International: Finalists ARCASIA Award; Arya Architects - only Indian firm in the final four.
2009 Prime Minister’s award for Best Mass Transit System
2010 Best New Innovation Project award under Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) for excellence in Urban Transport. BRTS Ahmedabad.
2010 International Award by TRB for Sustainable Urban Transport, at Washington DC, USA
2010 International Award: Joint Runners up for the award for Outstanding Innovation in Public Transport, at International Transport Forum, Innovators meet, Germany. BRTS Ahmedabad.
2010 Landscape: AISAA, All India Stone Architectural Award for Mewar Complex Project, Rajsamand Jury briefed it as a “sensitive intervention into a unique landscape”.
2011 International Award –‘PT X 2 Knowledege and Research Award’ and Asia Pacific Regional Award – ‘Daring Ambition Award’at the 59th UITP World Congress, Dubai. BRTS Ahmedabad.