Mumbai Concrete Paradox

Advanced Architecture Studio 6

Spring 2013

Eric Bunge + Mimi Hoang, critics, with Thomas Kosbau

This architecture design studio used the new elevated Mumbai Metro system as a dispersed infrastructural site for political provocation and architectural invention. In counterpoint, we considered Le Corbusier’s capitol buildings in Chandigarh as an analogous site, emblematic of an antithetical model of centralization. The studio instead proposed more immediate and accessible ways of bringing services and representation to a future mobile public, thereby reframing the government building typology as a node in an infrastructural network. Mumbai Concrete Paradox was the third in a series of nARCHITECTS’ studios framed by historical modernist contexts, and with a focus on relationships between innovative uses of concrete and representations of power and identity. In this studio, our aim to update uses of concrete was expanded from canonical buildings to include infrastructure.

Students re-conceived of the Metro’s soon to be completed Line 1 as a linear armature for the provision of both rapid transit and expanded government services. Ultimately focusing on the redesign of one station building and segment of tracks in greater detail, students imagined new possibilities for both the 11km of elevated tracks, and the twelve individual station buildings. During the studio trip we visited Chandigarh and Mumbai, where we held a workshop at Studio-X with various government agencies, including the MMRDA, MTSU and Embarq.

Christine Nasir A/B/C
Qingxiang Liang D