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Architecture BRIO features for the second year in the AD50. The AD50 is an endeavour to spotlight the best in residential design across India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. Curated by Balkrishna Doshi and India Mahdavi, the list focusses on firms whose projects represent the power of architecture to transcend functionality, create enduring spaces for its inhabitants and define new idioms for the cities in which they are located.
Gazing down from the top of a hillock in Karjat – near Mumbai, in the Western Ghats foothills – all you see is a cover of green. What it is, is the cleverly camouflaged roof of the Riparian House, looking like nature contrived to place it there. For Architecture BRIO, an imprint subtly left behind in the midst of a green cover.
The acclaimed creators of highly feted projects – like the Laureus Learning Pavilion (an interactive space for underprivileged children commissioned by the NGO Magic Bus), and the House on a Stream – they are known for structures that seem to emerge out of their surroundings; the latter won them recognition at the 2015 JK Cement Architect of the Year Awards [AYA]. The firm also collaborated with BillionBricks, a not-for-profit enterprise that works with displaced and homeless communities, to transform Konchur, Karnataka into a model village.
The Riparian House is yet another reflection of the firm’s skill at integrating built spaces into their specific environments. The stone boulders discovered during the excavation process, timber, and coursed Indian limestone ensure that the house plants itself unobtrusively in its surroundings.