KOCHI: The first day of TiEcon saw insightful panel discussions on ‘Planning and Designing for Climatic changes’. The session was led by architect Miki Desai, Amity University academic advisor K T Ravindran and architect from South Africa Peter Rich Soth. At the session, the speakers stressed on the need to come up with a sustainable and demographic-friendly architecture.
Desai said natural calamities brought to attention the problems associated with improper town planning. He highlighted how Richard Rogers, a British architect noted for his modernist and functionalist designs in high-tech architecture, had impressed on the need to build cities suitable for planet like ours.
“In the book 'Cities for Small Planets', the author has appropriately summed up all the things we need to discuss and implement. The author said nothing else damages the earth's environment more than our cities. As the world's population has grown, our cities have burgeoned and their impact on the environment has worsened.
Meanwhile, from the isolated, gated communities within Houston and Los Angeles in the US, to the millions of residents of Bombay living in squalor, the city has failed to serve its ideal function — as the cradle of civilization, the engine of culture, and the inspiration for community and citizenship,” Desai said.
Ravindran brought to light the disastrous impact climate change would have on the country's coastal zone, especially Kerala.
“An increase by merely 3 to 4 degrees in the temperature will rewrite the present coastal lines. All the cities located in the coastal region will turn into a water world. Cities like Mumbai, Kochi and Chennai, among others, will be submerged. The floods in Kerala this year actually showcased what lies in store for the coastal lines,” he said.
Ravindran said: “Since coastal areas are densely populated, a climate risk will have a devastating effect. The only solution would be to bring about a climate change responsive development which will help arrest the spike in temperature to below 2 degrees at least by 2100.”
Meanwhile, Rich said every country should adopt an architecture in tune with its demography and geography. “People try to ape developed countries. This is happening in India and it was what actually led to the devastation wrought by the floods in Kerala,” he said.