The Daylight House, a Serene Home in an Urban Scenario, by Ashwin Architects

Architecture Interior
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Project Credits:
Name: Daylight House
Location: Nagarbhavi, Bengaluru
Architects: Ashwin Architects
Built-Up Area: 4500 square feet
Duration: 18 Months
Photography: Shamanth Patil

“Design is thinking… made visual.” -Saul Bass

Depicting design, sensitive to clients and capturing the essence of the context, this project is situated in Nagarbhavi, Bengaluru. The structure design is a residential bungalow and comprises of four bedrooms, hall and kitchen, along with a basement.

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Current architectural scenario is gradually implying that sustainability not be limited to an additional facet, but an intrinsic requirement. In accordance with this, the structure has been designed to be reasonably climatically responsive. The material used for construction is light weight concrete blocks. The weight of these is approximately 20% of the conventionally used concrete blocks, that is, blocks measuring 9 kg per piece have been used, as opposed to those measuring 35 to 40 kg per piece. Therefore, the total dead weight assimilating of the structure is considerably lesser than a standard building of the same physical attributes. Therefore, the usage of concrete as well as steel was decreased, and the finishes applied did not vary those of a conventional building.

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The house is situated in an urban scenario in India. Therefore, the surrounding structures have a defined architectural language, and therefore, design ideologies are invariably curbed. While the external language adheres to the discipline of the neighboring buildings, the home itself as an internal design which can be called as ‘introvert’. Spaces have been designed within the form of the houses for recreation and enjoyment. For instance, there are niches with landscaping, adding the quality of tranquility through nature.

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Regarding the conventional Indian belief in architecture, ‘Vastu Shastra’ is the derivation of architectural principles, defined during the ancient times. In recent times, the art has grown from being a precise science, to beliefs postulated in the face of superstitious beliefs. The architects, however, have applied the principles of the same, with respect to climatology, and not the baseless beliefs. It has been ensured that the design invites controlled natural light into all the spaces of the house, and in fact, the name ‘Daylight House’ is derived from the ideal. There is a ‘split’ in the house, which acts as a channel, for air to drift into the dining area, and this induces effective cross ventilation.

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The client brief simply stated the requirement for a spacious home, and yet, not at the cost of lung space for the family. Therefore, in accordance with the same, essential setbacks have been provided. Therefore, within architecturally sustainable principles, vital client requirements and the architectural philosophy, the home has been designed in a contemporary style, with simplicity at the core of the concept. Proceeding with the initial thought, multiple levels are created in the house, with a three-dimensional layered approach, with different zones within defined by different heights. Geometrically, it can be likened to carving out portions from a solid cube, at the most apt junctures, to define the ensemble into a form.

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One of the highlights of this project is a massive skylight. It measures approximately 30’ x 6’ in size. It is evident that it allows a significant amount of natural light to permeate to the interiors. Also, heat is reduced by the addition of ribs, which help in curbing radiation to a certain extent. Further, heat reflective glass has been used, along with placing air vents, at the highest level, causing heat to escape as it rises, and keeping up a flow of air throughout.

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Within the tenets of the project, the challenges encountered by the design team included ensuring the fulfilment of all required functions balanced with maintaining adequate setback ranges, so that air circulation was prevalent. Also, landscapes spaces, acting as buffer spaces, were to be planned, within the various other functions of the house, in order to emphasize on the spatiality of the largesse of the house.

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With the idea of simplicity ingrained in the conceptual origins of the house, the Daylight House truly embodies the architectural philosophy and design style of the architects.

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– Devashree Vyas, Volume Zero.

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