Architecture & Planning Archive

  • Religion and Urban Transformation – A Conversation with Vinayak Bharne

    Following his 24-chapter edited volume, The Emerging Asian City: Concomitant Urbanities and Urbanisms, Los Angeles based urbanist Vinayak Bharne’s co-authored book Rediscovering the Hindu Temple: The Sacred Architecture and Urbanism of India opens a refreshing and provocative dialogue on the presence and role of Hindu...

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  • Can we first fix our Viewing Lens?

    A few years ago, when my dissertation topic for the planning course at Development Planning Unit, UCL London looked at the newly launched JNNURM through a theoretical framework of ‘social justice’, it was not only interesting to learn the findings of the study, but was...

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  • Shopping malls as public space in India

    It was high monsoon season. Rain-dodging families, teenagers and the elderly were in search of a retreat: a place to gather, stroll and dig into their lunch tiffins away from the oppressive heat and humidity. As India’s leading builder of enclosed shopping malls, Mumbai granted...

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  • The Great FSI Debate : Increasing FSI improves housing solutions

    The minimal FSI currently exists in the Island city of Mumbai and its Suburbs is surely affecting the city’s housing sector and quality of life of people living there. The city boasts one of the highest population influxes (12 million population-highest in India) than any...

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  • The Great FSI Debate : Indian Cities & the Shanghai Fascination

    This is emerging as a series on how Indian Cities perform and think on foreign urban solutions to local problems. While the BRT continues to draw mixed responses, there is another city-changing idea in the pipeline. This time the urban development minister ‘moots’ the idea...

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  • The Great FSI Debate: Use FSI in a holistic manner.

    Density is good for any city for several reasons: better connectivity, smaller carbon footprint and more improved mixed-used development. And Mumbai stands at an advantage for all these reasons but we are still getting it wrong. The density has never been used as planning tool...

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  • The Great FSI Debate: Benefits of Urban Density

    Mumbai is one of the most populated cities in the world living on a tiny footprint, as compared to its international peers. The statistics and unique and shocking- a FSI or living space/household of 2.8 sqm and public open-space/ person less than 1sqm. Mumbai’s  current...

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  • The Great FSI Debate: FSI versus Quality of Life

    Floor Space Index is a tool for optimum ‘land consumption’ and ‘building density’. There is an on-going discussion about vertical cities and increasing FSI three or four times in India cities, which are primarily cities ‘ground level cities’ till now. To do judicious and optimum...

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  • Why small towns are lagging behind?

    There are 4,378 urban centres that have the 285 million urban citizens of the country. Of these there are 35 cities that have more than 1 million people and together account for 107.88 million people. That means the remaining 177.12 million or more than half of the...

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  • Vinayak Bharne on “The Emerging Asian City”

    Vinayak Bharne is the Director of Design at Moule & Polyzoides in Los Angeles, one of the founding firms of the New Urbanism movement; and a joint faculty of urbanism and planning at the Sol Price School of Public Policy and the School of Architecture...

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  • Expert Diary : Commentators