Wednesday, August 13, 2014

City Beautiful - Today's Needs not the Glorious Vision of the Past

Last month, I needed to go to sector 34 (Chandigarh) twice. On the first occasion, it had rained and the muddy paths and chaotic parking did not help.

I was reminded of the visits by ‘High-rise buildings against edict of Chandigarh’:
 The UT submitted, “According to the edict of Chandigarh as envisaged by Le Corbusier, ‘no construction should take place in the area north of the Capitol Complex’.
I am more concerned by our own views and vision of  today than by what Le Corbusier thought half a century ago.

Back to sector 34 visits.

The second time, it hadn't rained. So, the open areas were dry and very uneven. Parking was as chaotic as before.

Once I was inside the service centre of a multi-national, it was very comfortable. However, the entrances to buildings were even uglier than sector 17 without the open pathways and exotic show rooms on ground floor to compensate.

Ugliness is inevitable. Given the cost of land, the stairways are as narrow as possible. Interiors are often dark and dingy. Many offices are cubby-holes without being snug with adults occupying spaces more suitable for children.

I had to visit more buildings than I wanted as the office had shifted and it took me effort to find the right place :(

Today's issues -

How does the city reduce the dependence on cars?
How does the city make working and living spaces affordable (even for people who are not a part of the government)?

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