SpaceMatters was invited to design a Paramedical College in the existing campus of the Institute of Medical Science in Agroha, Haryana. This building is a gift from a reputed industrial house whose roots lie in the city. The brief was to design a modern, state-of-the-art facility within the Institute to provide affordable healthcare to a predominantly rural population.
The Paramedical College was designed to be a mound emerging from the earth, hence, the low, horizontal form. Red sandstone and brown-coloured concrete recreate earthy palettes of the prehistoric landscape. A triple-height white sandstone jaali / lattice-wall greets people at the foyer. The Jaali soothes the eyes in this dry and harsh region, while creating shade and bringing in cool air.
At the heart of the rectilinear structure lies a courtyard, scooped out of the ‘mound’ to create a shaded oasis. An amphitheatre placed here functions as a spill-out space that also hosts assembly. Learning happens at any time and place, which is why formal and informal merge at the edge of this void.
The programme varies across the floors, and each floor is divided into wings (North-East, South-East, North-West and South-West). The 4 wings on the ground and the first floor reduce to 2 wings seconds floor onwards. Academic spaces are on the ground, first and fourth floors while the second and third floors host staff offices and smaller libraries.
The 7000sqft L-shaped library takes up half of the ground floor footprint. Enveloped in glass, it overlooks the garden on one side and the courtyard on the other. Flared mushroom columns, which meet the ceiling gently with an offset, give the impression of a floating ceiling.
Our design uses materials judiciously and carefully for longevity and minimal maintenance. Autoclaved aerated concrete blocks generated a lighter structure since pile foundations were avoided (demanded by a brick structure of this scale). Stone on the facade was fixed with MS frame and SS clamps using a dry-cladding technique instead of a cumbersome wet-cladding one. Silicone coatings over the sandstone facade prevents water absorption, thereby delaying moisture damage. The design lets in maximum natural while reducing heat gain through the use of louvers and building orientation.
Project: Vidya Devi Jindal Paramedical College
Location: Agroha, Haryana
Client: JSW Group
Architecture firm: SpaceMatters, New Delhi
Principal Architects: Suditya Sinha, Amritha Ballal, Moulshri Joshi
Design team: Suditya Sinha, Amritha Ballal, Moulshri Joshi, Pradeep Kumar, Harish Singla, Gaurav Gupta, Bharat Bhushan, Akash Kumar Das, Sandeep Singh Rathore, Sony Joshua, Akhilesh Yadav
Site Area: 27,000 sq ft or 2500 sqmProject Area: 90,000 sq ft or 8360 sqm
Initiation of Project: October 2017
Completion of project: August 2019
Photographs: Andre Fanthome, Noughts & Crosses LLP