Plan for the facility proposes a built-up area of approximately 90,000 sq. ft. Antim Samskar Seva signed a joint MOU with the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) to redevelop one of the city’s largest cremation sites and burial grounds: Mata Ramabai Ambedkar Smashan Bhumi, located in Worli.

Project Name: Crematorium- The forgotten facet of the city
By: Sohan Kadam
Area of site: 9 acres
Budget for the project: Rs. 39 crores
Location: Mumbai, India

©Sohan Kadam

The study of religion in cities has become important because of the urbanization of the globe and a major transformation in the way people perceive religion. If religion is taken as a lens to look at Mumbai, one could find that there are no traces of ethno-religious divisions that cut across the people residing in this metropolitan city. Mumbai being a multilingual settlement which celebrates all the festivals together needs a crematorium which caters to almost all the sections of this diverse society.

©Sohan Kadam

The current scenario of cremation grounds is a by-product of increasing social taboo and the stigma attached to death in this modernizing world. Thus crematoriums have become segregated and dead spaces in the urban context. The act of cremation is reduced to a mere set of ‘tasks’ to be conducted in a certain ritualistic manner. It forms an invisible part of the built fabric in a city.

©Sohan Kadam

Crematoriums are important places because everyone has to deal with death during their life. A death of loved ones can have a high impact on someone’s life, and the surroundings of these moments should support people during difficult times. Cremation sites are interesting from designer’s perspective, because you have to take both physical and emotional demands into account which requires understanding and empathy from the designer.

©Sohan Kadam

The aim is to create a secular crematorium that unites and binds the residents of the city and more importantly commemorates death rather than treating it as a taboo. This can be achieved by eradicating the stigma through a MUSEUM OF EVOCATION, a space which is an addition to the crematorium that would try and connect the residents of the city to their deceased.

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