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Top Architects | September 2014

Innovisionary Architects - Abhin Alimchandani

Abhin Alimchandani, Proprietor, STUP Design Forum and STUP consultants

A French Government Scholar, master planner and researcher, Abhin has been instrumental in taking innovation to another level through various government and private projects.

STUP has designed the Hyderabad International Airport, which is rated amongst the five top airports and is the first Greenfield LEED approved airport in the world.

Views & Beyond
Define innovation in architecture
For me architecture evolves in the realm of ideas, where unique solutions emerge from the framework and palimpsest of context and meaning, and this act of innovation continues in the articulation of architecture till its final use.

Which is your most innovative project and why?
We are now designing an airport on an island, with a terminal floating on the sea and a runway that extends into the ocean. Inspired by fluidity of the sea and marine life, the entire structure is designed to make minimum interference with the environment. The terminal is prefabricated and column-free. Customised design makes this architectural creation invigorating.

Name an innovative iconic structure and explain your choice.
The pyramid at the Louvre Museum, Paris, designed by IM Pei is an all time favourite. Symbolically Pei designed the most innovative paradox, where he re-imagined the ancient form of the pyramid and interpreted it in a unique and contemporary form of steel and glass. It may be debated but the great aspect of Louvre Pyramid is that it is a questioning architecture and not a questionable one.

Tell us about a dream project of yours which is yet not accomplished.
We are designing a museum for the Indian Air Force where symbolism, aesthetics, engineering innovation and sustainability come together to create an expressive and futuristic architecture.

What is your vision for the future of Indian architecture?
India has a great future, given its large canvas and sheer diversity that allows for a variety of architectural expressions. And it is through collective thinking and a common sense of trying to achieve a better quality of life for everyone that will help us realise the idea of India.

The Parliament Building for the Peoples Republic of Gambia, 4,468 sq m, Completion - June 2014
Designed as a sustainable building, it uses day-lighting and shading devices like a pergola roof. Its sweeping forms are derived from the local culture. Its unique features include the day-lit assembly hall and the palm and coconut leaf motifs on the fatade and ceilings.

The Solar Energy Centre for the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, Gurgaon, 10226 sq m (Under construction)
The building is designed to symbolise low and high rise architecture. The low rise blends with the environment, while the high rise building is designed as a tower of gardens spiralling to the top. Thermal mass for cooling and a photovoltaic form for generating power is used. Architectural strategies include shaded terraces, optimised and perfectly oriented forms of the building, solar gardens and roofs. The building uses chilled beam technologies, rainwater harvesting and various other electro-mechanical technologies to achieve the GRIHA 104 rating.

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