Scaling New Heights
A 212507.95 sq m residential multi-family development with 2310 units of varying sizes in Katedhan Village of Rajendra Nagar Mandal, Hyderabad has been a fantastic learning experience for us, at FHD!
The client needed a cost-effective, sustainable and Vaastu-compliant design; with optimization of available FSI of 2.5 and efficiency of 70% – which means Carpet Area / Saleable area – 0.7. Other specifications included error- free area analysis and optimization of common areas. Spread across 760 – 3 BHK, 520 – 2.5 BHK, 560 – 2 BHK, 240 – 1BHK & 230 Studio Apartments, the 2310 unit-scheme is a superb example of how all issues related to the development were analyzed openly and ethically, to generate practical solutions, adhering to all bye-laws and respecting the client’s brief.
This development, with its varied constraints and commercial considerations emerged as one of the most challenging projects in the studio. The design solution was guided by some rather obvious parameters, like: the natural contours of the site, the adjacent lake as well as budget restrictions. The minimalistic approach was found to be the most viable one – and designing as per the terrain minimized excavation and filling, thereby reducing the cost. A prime consideration was to afford each apartment a view of the lake – with the premium apartments obviously getting the best views.
Special attention was paid to landscaping; and the concept evolved by listening to the site itself – a podium, a recessed green area, a sunken landscaped zone etc – all emerged as viable options on the site. The main landscaped area being lower than the driveway-level and 1.5M above basement level, creates a valley-like feeling overlooking the adjacent lake. Besides the factor of cost saving, the valley-like space provides a wonderful visual and physical break in the dense urban habitat.
The vertical development with lush green pockets, creation of valley-like landscape using natural terrain, single-level basement with ample parking maintaining 1:1 ratio, and easy access to essential amenities – are some of the USPs of the project – which promises to be a landmark on the cityscape!
The project, while being a massive development, was a great experience for us at FHD. There are quite few things we have learnt from the process. Firstly, that any project of this scale and stature requires a dedicated team; for ease of communication. Also, to minimize revisions from the client, it is essential to make elaborate and precise work-orders with clearly defined scope of work. We found that though each decision was made after careful preparation and analysis of the BOQ, there were delays in decision-making that could have been avoided if we had a better system in place.
All in all, though there are no remarkable innovations in place, either in design or construction, the development would grow into a substantial presence on the skyline and will enrich the architectural identity of the locality!