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S K Das
Principal, SK Das Associated Architects, New Delhi
“City, Multiplicity and Specificity”

The city is a turf on which different sectarian interests fight and negotiate for space and presence. Aside from the obvious divide between the planned and the unplanned, the city in India today consists of many fragments of interests and communities, each carrying its own agenda, aspirations and sensibilities. With varied degrees of association with or distance from globalization, each city represents specific needs, interests, aspirations and sensibilities, all of which demand the fine-tuning and texturing of form and substance. This presentation will discuss these concepts and be supported by illustrative examples to support the case of “an architecture of contextual multiplicity” in a democratic development process.

S K Das is a Delhi-based architect and professor, and is the principal founder of S.K. Das Associated Architects, established in 1987. He was a senior faculty member at the Institute for Housing and Urban Development Studies (IHS), Rotterdam, from 1981-’86, and has subsequently held several teaching positions, including that of Dean and Professor at the Sushant School of Art and Architecture, New Delhi; Visiting Professor at the School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi; and Visiting Professor at the University of Leuven amongst many other institutions within India. Mr Das has also lectured at several universities, including MIT, Columbia, Architectural Association, Berkeley, and Delft. He has been selected as an USIS visitor, an Eisenhower Fellow, and a Chettle Fellow (University of Sydney). In 1991 he won the National Award for Community Architecture in India, and his work related to post cyclone reconstruction has been listed among the 100 best practices by UN Habitat, and has also received the national award. He served as Vice President of the International Society of City and Regional Planners (ISoCaRP), from 1995 to ’98, and is currently an Advisor to the Infrastructure Development Finance Company (IDFC), India, and the Delhi Urban Arts Commission (DUAC).

Mr Das’s forte has been in developing master planning of townships, urban design for inner city areas, mixed-use developments, housing, and large-scale real estate development projects in a broad range of international contexts. His clientele for consultancies includes UNDP, UN Habitat, UNESCAP, NOVIB (Netherlands Organization for International Development Corporation), and the governments of Sri Lanka, Thailand, Indonesia. His professional experience spans Latin America, Africa, Asia, Europe and the United States.

Mr.Das’s works were exhibited at the Aedes Gallery in Berlin in October 2002, under the title “Mirrored Metropolis”. Currently his works are exhibited in Aedes Gallery under the title “How Urban is India”. He was also invited by Asia Society and the New York League of Architects to present on Indian Architecture and his works.

Some of the key projects include the development of the Master Plan for Kota Tigaraksa New Town and District Capital Development, Indonesia; redevelopment of a five square kilometer of central city slice in Delhi, Master plan of the Crossings New Town on the outskirts of Delhi in collaboration with Sasaki Associates, Many Urban design interventions in Delhi and large scale residential developments in different parts of India including designing the tallest residential building in Delhi NCR.

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