Hailing from a family that prioritises education, she grew up, one of four sisters, in an environment where the focus was on assertively expressing views and feelings and doing what one believed in. Always encouraged to pursue her dreams, Mumbai-based Trupti Amritwar Vaitla opted to take up architecture. For, as she points out, medicine or engineering were the only two options for good students — which she was. But, she did not make it into reputed government engineering colleges and ended up pursuing architecture, despite her limited knowledge about its scope. However, this decision helped her find herself, and she soon understood the creative contribution of the discipline to society. Her subsequent master’s in urban design from CEPT University (Ahmedabad) bolstered her desire to do good for the community at large. “The opportunity to touch lives motivated me to improve the urban environment,” she states.
Amritwar wanted to work with the government on public projects but found that there were no openings for urban designers. So, she joined HL Design Group, a British firm in Malaysia in 2000, which, despite giving her experience in large-scale commercial projects, had little to do with social issues.
On re-routing her career, she recalls, “I returned to India in 2006 and started teaching classes on urban issues at Mumbai’s Rachana Sansad - Institute of Urban and Regional Planning, and I launched the urban design cell there.