An ode to Vernacular Architecture

Architecture + Design|June - July 2020

An ode to Vernacular Architecture
Project: Krupachaya Farmhouse, Village Kule, Maharashtra. Architects: Q-design, Maharashtra

In today’s world of modern technology, the concept of ‘in coherence with nature’ seems to have gotten lost. The most befitting concept of designing with nature, Vernacular Architecture teaches the art of perceiving and responding to our immediate environment—a concept that does not alienate the community from its context.

Krupachaya is a farmhouse project designed with an earnest effort to employ the principles of Vernacular Architecture in the truest sense. Located on the banks of the Walki river at Kule village, Tal Mulshi, around 35 km on the western end of Pune city, the farmhouse is spread over an area of 2.5 acres (10,000 sq m). The site was surrounded by fertile farmland with paddy fields, coconut and mango plantations. The architects had to maintain the footprint of the existing farmhouse built on 142 sq m, as registered in the Gram Panchayat records.

The evolution of the built form can be seen as a result of the interaction between the user and his environment, which not only includes the natural, but also the social and the economic environments. The client is a resident of Sadashiv Peth, Pune, and inherits a typical ‘Peth’ culture of houses on small plot widths, which causes vertical distribution of spaces. Thus, the foremost requirement was of a multidimensional space amidst nature, where the family can interact and come together.

With regard to the natural look and the philosophy of design with nature, the concept of Konkan architecture was decided upon. A Konkan house is typically made in red laterite stone, commonly known as china. There was an existing mango tree adjacent to the old structure that was gifted to the client by the king of Nepal. The mango tree was conceptualized as the epicenter of the house, and the complete built form was planned around the tree in such a way that it became an intrinsic part of the design vocabulary.

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June - July 2020