Introduction | IIT Gandhinagar
The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) is a public technical university in Gandhinagar, Gujarat, India. Spanning 400 acres of land along the river Sabarmat. This institution is among the most globalised campuses in India, with its huge and sustainable faculty exchange programs with renowned universities from all continents. IIT aims to become the best educational institute in India and among the best in the world, as they promote critical thinking and encourage innovations. This pursuit has driven the institution into keen facility planning. It has been awarded a five-star GRIHA LD rating for its sustainable development approach, which will define norms for such developments.
The University provides many facilities to meet the needs of both students and faculty, from Messes and Canteens: Clubhouses, Medical centres, sports facilities, and Student accommodations. Prominent among these campus facilities is the guest house, designed to provide an attractive physical environment for guests, visiting faculties, and scholars. The design architects won the commission through a two-stage competition conducted by the institution. Beyond the essential requirements, the institution had an opening for contributions from project participants.
Planning And Design of the Guest House
The Neeraj Manchanda Architects designed the guesthouse, it covers a total of about 9850 sq. and was commissioned in 2021. This facility is located near the Gate-02 of the institute. The building holds an architectural statement due to its unique design with single-loaded corridors that open its circulation to the surrounding landscape for connections with nature.
The facility has 85 rooms, of various types, including single, double, and special to cater to all guest needs, and can accommodate up to 170 guests at full capacity. The ground floor is designed to maintain seamless continuity between the indoor and outdoor areas, thereby creating visibility and space for social interactions. This concept was used to foster a comfortable micro-climate in the courtyards, inspired by the vertical scale of the Pols of Ahmedabad and a Corbusierian vocabulary,
Asides from the unique building form that was used, the Architect maintained a good spatial layout and distribution with few angular dead ends, that were utilized as convergence spaces. Introducing those spaces with tilted vertical walls was also a good move to control solar gain in indoor spaces. There was also a good consideration for inclusiveness.
Due to the warm climate of the region, the passive solar design approach was appropriately utilized. The concept of mutual shading was introduced to create a microclimate within the building by splitting the corridors and inserting a thin garden, creating the idea of a vertical garden.
Distinguishing design elements were used, such as the undercroft, expanse of space with hard and soft landscaping elements, and light and shadow differentiations to promote interactivity amongst guests. This extensive use of landscape vegetation and greeneries pervades the building and its undercroft, supported by a horizontal garden elaborated by a combination of pre-cast paver panels, gravel, and turf.
Material and Construction
In sustaining the idea of the structural and architectural relationship, the materials of construction and geometry are two distinguishing features of the facility harmoniously fussed. Every material formed a part of a long-lasting, robust solution. The facility has an outstanding geometry of two pointing nose-like ends, forming an intersection reconciling the north edge of the site with the south and naturally opening out to a garden. This opening gives an idea of open arms and reception into the building. Good materials like:
- Granites and bricks were used in the corridors.
- Bricks were used at the walkways of the undercroft.
- The entire facility was built with self-compacting concrete.
Traditional elements of Gujarati art and craft with non-repeated end-to-end horizontal murals in every room were integrated into the project to complete the experiential connection of the users to the location.
Sustainability Approach | IIT Gandhinagar
Passive design strategies and methods were deployed to ensure sustainability measures were taken seriously, such as:
- Orientation and positioning of the building
- The use of solar shading devices to ensure cooling
- Concrete fins and a fenestration that draws detail from the movement and angles of the sun are very visible.
- Good daylighting.
- Strategic opening up of circulation areas to ensure adequate airflow into the spaces to reduce the air-conditioning demand.
The mutual shade and vertical scale comprise a green continuum that carries the horizontal garden indoors into the undercroft and subsequently up into a thin court, making the vertical garden. The continuous concrete pergola reduces solar isolation in the thin courtyard. The windows, other wall openings, and landscape elements unify the indoor and outdoor areas to modulate thermal comfort and create interaction opportunities. This creates an interplay of horizontality and verticality.
The building has been in use for about a year, and the post-occupancy reports validate the fact that the brief has been delivered and that the outcome corresponds to the objectives. It also shows that the design was the location and client-centred to ensure specific requirements were met. A consistent architectural language seen in all the campus projects ensures robust and sustainable building solutions from the onset.
- Guesthouse at IIT(2023)https://guesthouse.iitgn.ac.in/(Accessed on March 27, 2023)
- IIT Gandhinagar (2023) https://worksofteam.wordpress.com/2017/03/23 (Accessed on March 27, 2023)
- IIT Gandhinagar-master Plan(2023)https://www.re-thinkingthefuture.com/urban-design (Accessed on March 27, 2023)
- IIT Campus facilities (2023)https://www.pagalguy.com/colleges/indian-institute-of-technologygandhinagar-iit-gandhinagar/campus-facilities (Accessed on March 27, 2023)
- Guesthouse IIT Design Architects(2023) https://architecture.live/guesthouse-at-iit-gandhinagar-by-neeraj-manchanda-architects (Accessed on March 27, 2023)