The Energy and Resources Institute
Gwal Pahadi, Haryana
BUILT UP AREA:
This project was an opportunity to create a solar passive design such that it reflected TERI’s pioneering role in advocating sustainable design in the indian building industry.The site was being used by the TERI staff for recreational purposes as well as testing ground for green technology in landscaping, architecture, renewable energy, etc. As a learning environment, we wanted the buildings to promote a holistic sense of sustainability - grounded, achievable and intrinsic to a way of life.We made a meticulously detailed passive solar design as opposed to a system intensive approach to sustainabilty.In the placement of the various blocks across the site, the master plan emphasized creating a compact, pedestrian campus, without harming any of the trees.
The undulations of the site - ranging from minimal or gradual slopes to sharp plunges and deep bowls - were intimately studied. The topography was exploited for natural ventilation, drainage, catchment areas, and self-shading through the modulation of levels. For example, the auditorium is placed in a natural depression in the site which collects water at the base through rainwater harvesting, while the library block is partially earth-bermed merging with the contours.
A host of solar passive strategies were used to maximize thermal comfort within the blocks. Environmental-friendly systems like solar collectors and wind towers were employed not just for their functional utility but as integral aesthetic components of the architecture.
It was critical to preserve the unique, verdant nature of existing campus in spite of the new interventions. The existing road network provides the primary spine onto which the new intervention and allied services plug in. Additional secondary roads could thus be minimized.