We are witnessing drought in several parts of the country and floods in others. Both lead to immeasurable loss of human and animal lives and the ecosystems. Drought and floods both accentuate water crises and nutrient loss from agriculture land, a threat to our food security and our very existence. We are inching towards a deeper environmental crisis. Flood toll crossing 100 in Bihar, Assam and Meghalaya is a testimony to it.
With burgeoning urbanization, we are in an era of congestion where spaces come at a premium. Most of the elite apartment complexes or gated communities that boast abundant greenery predominantly host an array of exotic plant species and manicured lawns that are ineffectual in enhancing the biodiversity of the region.
Good Earth Enclave is a sustainable community of 25 units on a three-acre plot in Kengeri. It has been designed and developed by a group of parents and teachers associated with the “Centre for Learning,” a school based on the philosophy of Jiddu Krishnamurthy.Architects Natasha Chawla and Jeeth Iype are part of “Good Earth Estates,” a firm inspired by Laurie Baker.
GoodEarth Malhar envisages a neighbourhood filled with a group of like-minded people who will take the idea of sustainability forward. Here, everyone must share pride, and a sense of caring for the earth. Good Earth Malhar envisages a neighbourhood filled with a group of like-minded people who will take the idea of sustainability forward. Here, everyone must share pride, and a sense of caring for the earth.Malhar is an ecovillage spread over 50 acres of land, which will be developed in a phased manner.
At a time when construction is all about the right location and prime time amenities, the few good soldiers who cling on to doing the right green thing, are spoken and written about. R S Ranjeetha Urs elaborates on what one of them Good Earth Orchard is all about. TWith the land resource becoming scarce by the day, its price has skyrocketed, leading to a widespread spurt in the growth of urban sprawl. Consequently, there is great stress on the city centres contributing to high density housing.
In the interiors of Kengeri, on the outskirts of Bangalore, one can see several houses spread across three acres of land in the midst of canopied trees, quite unperturbed by the usual city noises. Things seem to unfold here at an altogether different pace and have its own rhythm! This is the ‘Good Earth’ project, a brain child of Jeeth Iype, an architect and a couple of his like minded friends, who were aspiring to live in an eco-friendly environment.
Thanks to the highrise apartment culture, people have also forgotten how living with nature can be a joyful experience.But as I turn left from the Bangalore Mysore road, just after Kengeri, and absorb the scenic beauty that rolls by my window, I am quick to realise that there are some people who haven’t blotted out the goodness of the earth from their memory or their way of living. “We are engaged in bringing together like-minded people with a common vision of building a sustainable future,” says Stanley George, the MD of GoodEarth.
In concluding part of the series on Sustainable Architectural Practices, Himanshu Burte looks at the work of development firm Good Earth which has been trying to change the consumption pattern in the building process. Business, especially real estate development, is often blamed for the current ecological crisis. That criticism is true to a large extent. The logic of free market economics has always been centred on profit. Non-capitalist systems too have pursued economic sustainability at the cost of ecological sustainability.
A community more than a firm, the Kerala-based Centre for Eco-sensitive and Sustainable Development (ESDC), acquires its resources from the natural landscape and in return gives back a construction typology. On the banks of the Kaniampuzha river, in Ernakulam, Kerala, stands the Centre for Eco-sensitive and Sustainable Development (ESDC),which was started in 1987 by a group of architects, engineers and artisans. Inspired by the work of Laurie Baker, the group looks at architecture as a lifestyle, which relates to the psychological and cultural sensibilities of people and at the same time maintains harmony with the environment.
GoodEarth Orchard is s series of villas on the outskirts of Bangalore that uses eco-friendly technology to create an uncluttered to a greener future. Better infrastructure is a much debated topic in Bangalore these days. So far, its not been adequate to support an ever-swelling population, resulting in a chaotic, unrestrained crop of buildings and social alienation for a few.