Asserting that stainless steel shelters are neither cost-effective nor provide refuge from the vagaries of the weather,The Indian Institute of Architects (IIA) a national body of architects has expressed its opposition to the UT Administrations proposal to install stainless steel bus queue shelters in the city.
The Administration has already installed the stainless steel shelters at several places in the city while a further 50 more are to come up after undergoing modifications to their design. A proposal to change the design has been mooted by the Administration to remove some of the anomalies as the previous designs had also drawn flak.
The IIA has now waded in and has sent a letter to the Punjab Governor and UT Administrator Shivraj V Patil highlighting the problems. The architects state that the structures are not feasible for Chandigarh,where temperatures rise to 45 degrees in summer. Stainless steel as a material is unsuitable as it gets hot in summers and considerably cold in winters causing inconvenience to commuters,the architects state. They further claim that the cost of constructing a brick and concrete bus shelter is around Rs 3.63 lakh,while that of a stainless steel shelter is Rs 12 lakh. The architects state that an amount of Rs 4.18 crore will be saved if 50 brick and concrete bus queue shelters are built.
Surinder Bahga,chairman of The Indian Institute of Architects Publication Board,says that there is no justification for such a design. He says it is strange that mobile toilets which are supposed to be of stainless steel and fibre glass have been fabricated using mild steel which gets rusted and bus shelters which are required to be in brick-concrete are being made in stainless steel. The bus shelters in brick and concrete designed by architect Pierre Jeanneret for the city have been appreciated across the globe. They blend in with the architectural character of the city. Putting up stainless steel shelters that do not suit the climate is a wastage of public money, Bahga added.