Charles Correa, one of India’s greatest architects and urban planners, died on Tuesday night. He was 84.
Correa was one of the major advocates of what he called the open-to-sky space concept, which was reflected in his work across the world.
His rich body of work included Mahatma Gandhi Sabarmati Ashram, Jawahar Kala Kendra in Jaipur, the Madhya Pradesh state assembly, India’s Permanent Assembly in the United Nations, in New York, two hotels- the Cidade de Goa and the Kovalam beach resort besides several residential projects including the famous Kanchenjunga unit in Mumbai’s Peddar road and Delhi’s Crafts Museum.
Correa was also associated with several low cost housing projects in many cities and was the chief architect for Navi Mumbai – the new city which was built across the harbour. He believed that an open-to-sky space makes all the difference between a livable habitat and claustraphobia especially for those in the lower income group. According to him, open-to-sky spaces not only improve living conditions but could have considerable economic value in an advanced economy like India.
He was the first chairman of the National Commission on Urbanisation. Correa, who has won a string of awards, studied in Michigan and MIT.