Community architecture is described as the architecture practiced between the architect and the user. Here the architect follows the wish of the community to design the structure and helps them in devising the plan. The community helps in building the space, which increases the social bonding and trust among the community and instills a social value of space among them. In India, community architecture has been practiced for centuries wherein community spaces where given importance and residences were built around them. Learning from this many architects explores the communal feelings to build their structure, some of these projects have been listed here.
1. Vikas community housing, Auroville
The community housing built between 19992 to 1998 in Auroville is a type of incremental housing where the community kitchen was built first then subsequently residential apartments. The creation of this community was based on the spirited lifestyle of Auroville’s ideal of life. The housing is eco friendly The housing is built in compressed earth blocks from foundation to roof, a sustainable building material. It utilized the excavated earth to make the compressed earth blocks.
2. Kutch Earthquake rehabilitation
After the deadly earthquake of 2001, Hunnarshala and its partner organization trained the rural population in traditional Bunga construction as per earthquake stability standards so that they could rebuild their house which would respect their cultural expressions and safety from destruction.
3. Shaam-e-Sarhad village resort
The resort run by the pastoral community, considered as a backward community in Gujarat, was built with the artisan community in partnership with Hunnarshala. This project provides social, economic, and political benefits to the community as well as bring the modern societies to emphasize on their way of living light and sustainably on the land.
4. MAC center
The design of the center is a unique, semi-transparent wall curving into a spiral, continuously changing its height, curvature, and the number of perforations. The curving spiral takes you from the inner court to the covered communal space. The curve allows developing a longer path where narratives of its foundation story will be displayed to the community. The structure is made from hollow concrete blocks, handmade by local workers at the site. The perforations diffuse the harsh sunlight of the site and help to make the space cooler.
5. Valpoi busstand and community hall
Nestled in the western ghats of India, the building complex derives its forms from its context and it tries to create an illusion of suspension through massive cantilevers and unattached walls. The complex consists of a bus stand, a community hall, and a children’s park with a jogging track. The plan is commuter friendly and provides spaces for shops, waiting for areas, and drivers rest areas. The overwhelming roof shelters the buses whereas a series of laterite wall passages lead the villagers to the community hall.
6. Jetavan center
Jetavan center is a spiritual and skill development center built for the native Buddhist community in Kopargaon Maharashtra. The project was designed to link the practice of Buddhist philosophy and to impart training and skill development for members. The project utilizes locally available materials to build a sustainable center that is connected to nature in all its aspects.
7. Aranya Housing
Built to improve and upgrade the life of the slum populace, it created a diverse and balanced community of various social groups in the area. It induces a sense of community character between the built environment and its people and gives a sense of continuity and security to its people.
8. Artist Village, Belapur
The project is characterized by the hierarchy of spaces in terms of private and communal areas. Here 8 units share a common courtyard and three of these groups form a module with an ample amount of green spaces to cater to the different needs of the villagers. It is also an example of incremental housing. The informal character of roads and common communal spaces provide an identity that allowed enhanced interactions that preserved the essence of the village.