Relocation of banni pancham
Kutch mahila Vikas Sangathan
This project helped 1456 nomadic and Meghwal families build their homes. The traditional Bhungas (circular rooms) on extended plinths was adapted to incorporate stabilized earth blocks and rammed earth walls and tiled roofs with the involvement of master artisans of their community. The design evolved after discussions with the master masons of the region who explained why very few Bhungas were destroyed by the earthquake. The circular form develops an arch action when the earth shakes sideways. Some claim that this form was introduced by the pastoralists after the 1819 earthquake. The Meghwal master artisans worked with Hunnarshala to adapt the conical thatch roof to the octagonal tiled roof. Hunnarshala worked with Dr Arya (dynamic engineering expert) to develop the earth walling guidelines and structural stability of the Bhunga. Hunnarshala also developed the cyclone hooks for tiles with BGS Germany. The Meghwal women worked with Hunnarshala to develop stabilized earth paints for decorating the Bhungas.
The rammed earth walls were developed as a response to the lack of sufficient masons after the earthquake. The architects helped each family place the Bhungas on their plinths in relation with the rest of the structures. Hunnarshala helped develop the management plan and train the young boys and women of the women’s collectives to implement the project. They also provided the quality control audit for the program. The project has been nominated and short listed for site visit for the prestigious Aga Khan Award. The project helped revive the earthquake resistant ‘Bhunga’ and a sense of pride in the community in their unique architecture.
This residential project was designed by Mr Dhaval Mistry and Vishal Mehta. Their awareness about the benefits of the rammed earth wall construction inspired them to use the same in their construction. The artisans...