Barrier Free Abode by Space Race Architects

Text | Pappal Suneja Visuals | Purnesh Dev Nikhanj

Project Data

Project Name: Barrier Free Abode

Architecture Firm: Space Race Architects

Project Year: 2019

Built Up Area: 8443 Sq. Feet

Location: Jalandhar, Punjab, India

Specialist Manufacturers: Schuco, Motto, Lioli, Simpolo, Osram, Kohler, Pure, Sonear,Eureka Forbes, Blue Star

Principal Architect: Ar. Thakur Udayveer Singh

Specialist Design Team: Ritika Singh

Content credits: Pappal Suneja

Photography credits: Purnesh Dev Nikhanj

This article shall dive one into an enchanting visual experience of a universally designed residence, called barrier-free abode by Space Race Architects for Mr. Praveen Sekhri from Jalandhar, Punjab. This mansion rightly follows the principle of ‘simple living and high thinking’ as propagated by Mahatma Gandhi. The definition of simplicity is not defined by the high-end material execution; rather it is depicted by the expression and thoughts. The abode relates to simple living in terms of spaces curated instead of the architectural manifestations. The vision behind this residence is to consider a one-family inclusive home where the entire family lives blissfully together in harmony. 

The residence follows all the principles of universal design and inclusivity namely equitable use, flexibility, intuitiveness, tolerance for error, low physical effort, and optimal space for rightful approach and usage. It was a conscious decision of the Principal Architect after knowing that the home minister of the abode that is the mother of the clientele needed barrier-free spaces and access. The reflection of the same can be vividly witnessed by the provision of ramps at the porch as well the front landscape and at the rear landscaped court, the kitchen is completely accessible. The upper level is also accessible with an elevator just next to the dining area. The layout of the house is oblong in shape and linear in a plan. It is a perfect blend of aesthetics, function, spatial planning, and comfort. The interiors of the house are minimalist with respect to embellishments surfaced. It has got an elegant false ceiling that is singly recessed with cove lighting. 

There are three green courts, one at the left side as one enters, just opposite the informal sitting area and the other next to the lift opposite the dining area and the last, at the rear end adjacent to the kitchen. All these zones not only rightfully blend and connect the spaces with nature but also infuse light and ventilation throughout the day. The rear landscape court is designed as a rather meditative space with an Om symbol amidst the vertical garden at the backdrop. The vertical garden improves the air quality and filters the pollutants from entering the indoor spaces. Talking about architecture, the design is rather simple and intuitive that corresponds to the lifestyle of the benefactors. The interiors are mainly canvased with neutral colors and shades of grey. Carefully handpicked lamps for the bedrooms add aesthetic appeal and a play of light and shadow. 

The washrooms are quite spacious and grand; the use of hanging lamps above the basin and organically shaped sit-outs in the walk-in closet create a majestic feel. The layout of the ground floor comprises two bedrooms, one for the parents and the other for guests, an informal sit out next to the foyer, a formal lounge, and kitchen at the rear end with dining. In contrast to the rather docile interior and color combination of the bedrooms, other spaces like the formal lounge are treated differently. It reflects rather darker shades of beige and golden embellishments and is well connected with the rear meditative landscape showcased by a glass partition. Exploring the kitchen, it is an open built-in modular kitchen with a C-Shaped layout and burner in the center attached to a chimney. 

The working station on all three sides is covered with LED `white lights that perfectly blend with the subtle color combination. The upper level of the structure houses three bedrooms, an informal lounge, a utility and an open sit out with pergola roof in the front left end. As the residence is built on the philosophy of a one-family unit, both brothers with their family stay together harmoniously in each of the bedrooms, while the third room is designated for grandchildren. The kid’s room is inclusive of an indoor play area with wooden flooring and a bunker bed with a white color combination. The lift at the upper level leads to an informal lounge that is carefully designed keeping in mind the taste of the millennial generation. It has got gold plated wired skeleton furniture blended with cushions for chairs and black marble for the tables. The darker shade of beige and golden pastels is also reflected in the curtains and the jalied patterns on the sidewall. 

Further, the open sit out with pergola roof at the front left end is a buffer zone for family gatherings and to quench the need for the sunshine. Also, the utility and drying balcony at the rear end is hideously connected from the ground level with a stairway.  The exterior façade of the abode is an amazing blend of horizontal, diagonal, and vertical slits. The boundary wall is clad with stone and the mild steel tubes used in pergola at the upper level and vertical slits at the right end beautifully highlight a light and shadow effect. Talking about the services, the house is designed to be self-sufficient and to save energy consumption with the use of solar panels and rainwater harvesting. To conclude, this abode with its minimalistic interiors, functional, and aesthetically sophisticated facades achieves a balanced design. It attempts to make a long-lasting enchanting impression on the minds of both residents and the visitors.

Pappal Suneja, is a freelance architect and an architectural Journalist. He is an international correspondent for ADA Magazine as well as Country Reporter for worldarchitecture.org. Pappal is the founder & Chairman of Architectural Journalism & Criticism Organisation, India. He is currently pursuing his research at Stiftung Bauhaus Dessau, Germany.

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