Dilli Haat Pitampura
Dilli Haat at Pitampura, Delh, India Site Area: 2.9 Hectares (7 Acres) Built-up Area: 29,000 sq.m Completed: April 2008 Dilli Haat (Delhi’s marketplace) has been planned as a democratic space for the city. Public space is integrated within the backdrop of a food and craft market to create an ambience reminiscent of traditional Indian bazaars. This is an egalitarian space where people from all sections of the society come to buy crafts, to eat, to relax and to engage in diverse social interaction. The first Dilli Haat (also designed by this office) opened in the south-central part of Delhi in 1994. Hugely successful -- it attracts over a million visitors a year – it was the first exercise in Place Making in the city of Delhi, nearly 80 years after Edwin Lutyens planned New Delhi in the early twentieth century. The featured project – the Dilli Haat at Pitampura in northwest Delhi -- is the second such crafts market. It was commissioned after the success of the first and opened in April 2008. Its building programme was also developed by the design studio. This included integrating diverse issues like recreational, educational and cultural uses of the space within its historical context. The project is located on a corner site in the vicinity of the Subhash Place Business District and the Metro Station. The main Haat is set back from the street and is accessed by a public plaza that links to the Metro Station and the business district. The plaza has been designed as a recreational space and includes a play area for children integrated with the adjoining street. The project has nearly 100 crafts stalls, food courts, a spice market, an art gallery, an amphitheatre, a restaurant and conference facility. The buildings are single-storied and built around landscaped courts and plazas. The front part of the Haat has been elevated to provide a parking space for around 350 vehicles. A road along the perimeter of the site provides access to supporting infrastructure that includes a dormitory for visiting craftspeople. The design of the project was shaped by two goals. The first was to create as space that is humane and respects the needs of all users – both visitors and the craftspeople working in the Haat. The second was to establish a benchmark in the design of similar public spaces in the city. The buildings, constructed in exposed brick and stone, with shady verandahs have been inspired by the vernacular architecture of the region. The upper level plaza buildings have vaulted green roofs – a design feature used for the first time in a public space in the city. The green roofs and plazas are irrigated with recycled water produced by an onsite Sewage Treatment Plant. The project is a barrier-free environment and is built on principles of Universal Design. The selection of material, construction and layout was made to maximize thermal efficiency and minimize energy consumption. Nearly all areas are illuminated by natural daylight and are naturally ventilated. The brick and stone used in the project have been sourced from the surrounding region. Materials were selected for their durability and enduring qualities. The building vocabulary has been kept understated and the scale intimate to ensure that the buildings do not overwhelm the crafts being sold. A new group of craftspeople take over the Haat every fortnight. The experience of the space changes continuously – based on the changing crafts and craftsperson’s, the changing seasons and the numerous and colourful festivals of India.


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