An almost square 36 cents of land in 3-4 levels was tucked away from the busy medical college road. The design called for an inward plan. Conforming to the traditional 'naalu kettu ', this multi dwelling commune had a 'tharavaad ' (traditional Kerela family home) quality. The land profile used judiciously allowed vehicular parking at the lower level, making the upper levels vehicular free. As we traverse to the upper level we have a play space ,where dribbling, cycling and running toddlers form the active energy .The central green court has the four blocks and their units overlooking it and are accessed from this core transitional space. The heart and lungs of this community is the green court. This becomes the rendezvous for children and adults alike. The living spaces look into the court area , bedrooms are placed on the periphery ensuring privacy. This transition court is a social space ,where one meets greets and interacts with all, a hello or a smile is mandatory-conditioned by the space quality. The playful steps that connects the different levels and blocks, framed by the green creepers is delightful.
The green court is the natural ground level .The staggered natural stone paving allows percolation of rain water into the ground. Intermediate spaces such as the carom play space, the sit -out of the homes with an entry from the ground floor are all accessed from the court .The composite brick masonry and the colours of sunlight yellow in the interspersed courts add to the juxtapositioning of planes, solids and voids.
The arcaded space is the play area adding to the fun as it breaks the monotony of the framed structure. The steps acts as links at different levels looks into the central court and the inner pocket courts as one traverses to the upper levels.
Brick planter boxes edge the different areas, often cordoning spaces .The composite masonry has an outer layer of hollow bricks which acts as an insulating layer, due to the cavity. This considerably brings down the temperature keeping the micro climate 2-3 degrees less than the surrounding temperature, enhanced further by the green court.
Art has been the heart of several homes in this community. The usage of terracotta tiles and rustic tiles had added to the ambiance of this verdant interiors, where an old family heirloom becomes part of the furniture . The need of the user being respected ,and designed and tweaked as required. Walls which open to the outsides without the framing of windows has added to the becoming writing zones or dream areas.