A team of three senior architects and conservation experts, in a fresh appeal to the Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad (IIM-A) director and Governing Council members, has once again raised the demand for conservation of student dormitories designed by American architect Louis Kahn on the institute’s main campus.
In their appeal, Sarosh Anklesaria, T David Fitz-Gibbon Professor of Architecture, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, USA, Riyaz Tayyibji, team lead of National Institute of Urban Affairs (NIUA) Ahmedabad and Shubhra Raje, visiting faculty at CEPT University Ahmedabad, have raised four “key concerns” that remain unanswered.
Stressing on their importance to have “credibility towards building public trust and maintaining support of key stakeholders”, the panel of architects have demanded that the institute “must commit to transparency of process when consulting with, and appointing experts to future committees.”
Given the repeated mention of reports and findings of expert architect by IIM-A in its letters seeking support for bringing down the dorms designed by Luois Kahn and constructions new ones, the architects have demanded the institute to make public key reports and findings on the basis of which future recommendations are made.
Further, the appeal seeks transparency for “professionals of stature who have the breath and technical expertise to rehabilitate structures, to reimagine their adaptive transformation, and appreciate the intangible cultural legacy of its architecture.”
Also, demanding release from any non-disclosure agreements, allowing for greater transparency and trust in the process for the conservation team, it states, “The IIM-A must generate a platform for conservation team of Somaya and Kalappa Consultants and their team of consultants, including Dr Arun Menon (IIT, Chennai) to be heard and to respond to the key findings of the building committee, especially when these findings reference their work”.
The team of senior architects have also reiterated on the comprehensive conservation plan for the entire east campus including the faculty housing, Management Development Centre, Ravi Mathai Centre, dining hall and all buildings on the campus designed by Louis Kahn, Anant Raje and BV Doshi.
In addition to the fresh appeal, the earlier appeal made on December 31, has over 1100 signatories including representations from 218 universities and 58 nations.
In addition to deans, chairs, heads of departments, professors and PhD candidates, the list includes three Pritzker Prize winners and hundreds of professional architects across the world.
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