Mumbai’s SquareWorks is this year’s one of two award winners (from India) at International Architecture Awards – 2020 organized jointly by The Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design and The European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies. SquareWorks’ #7 Southlands, project has won the award under Restoration/Renovation category.
#7 Southlands, Mumbai is a retrofitting project where an 80-year-old Art-Deco Apartment rejuvenated to accommodate the postulated requirements of a modern-day multiuser collective. The project intends to celebrate the inherent quintessence of a sangfroid Bombay-ish precedent with distinct incorporation of consciously designed alterations. Its spatial system has been revitalized to cater functionality, which extends beyond the domesticity of an erstwhile household, assimilating further to reflect an untypical dynamic space that performs in more than several ways.
Like most older apartments, #7, Southlands, too, was a typical Art-Deco setup involving multiple rooms structured to facilitate conventional domesticity of an Indian household.
The brief posited dynamic multifunctional spaces, which served different purposes from time to time, and yet involved preservation of its iconic attributes.
This approach called for a conscious restoration proposal which not only would renew the lost charm of a 300 sqm 3BHK colonial apartment, but also addressed the multiuser specifics of a neoteric residential workspace, where the living room functions as a multidisciplinary workplace with multiple users, dining hall converts into a gallery or exhibition space.
The emphasis on contrasting static vs. dynamic elements is achieved by a studio-space, which is re-arrange able and playful as opposed to beds and storage, which portray permanence and stillness. Clear segregation of service core from master spaces.
Despite the pronounced division of existing space, the apartment evinced an ambiguous experience, in terms of internal navigation and functionality.
Awards were announced last month in Athens in Greece where over 125 New Buildings and Urban Planning Projects from 38 Nations were recognised with 2020 International Architecture Awards. The Awards are regarded internationally as the world’s most important global mark of excellence, recognizing the best international architecture practices, as well as the hundreds of corporate clients, developers, state and local governments, institutions, and general contractors that produced them.