The Symbiosis campus coming up at Kothur in Mahabubnagar district will have 350 different plants, mostly local species

Material comes more as a cosmetic factor in green design. It is architecture’s perspective and visualisation of a project that lays the foundation of a true green building.

So says the team of Murty & Manyam Architects & Engineers which is busy giving shape to a 40-acre sprawling green campus of Symbiosis University at Kothur in the neighbouring Mahabubnagar district.

“An architect makes a project green compliant with his conception and the material comes in to shape it as a green building,” says P. Venkat, Architect and Managing Partner of the firm.

The project which is shaping to target for LEED Gold Rating has come with unique design that reacts well with environment, as naturally as possible. The facades and all the design aspects are modern but they gel with local environment. The emphasis has been on harnessing natural air and light and all the blocks have more of north orientation.

Given the design, Mr. Venkat says that the need for air-conditioning has been done away with in most of the blocks in the campus. The boys’ hostel looks outside while the girls’ hostels have been designed to look inwards into the courtyard to offer them a sense of intimacy. The huge library forms from two circles joining together with light filtering down from the roof through the skylight.

More than 350 different plant species, mostly local species, are being put on the site which did not have a single green growth when work commenced. The design incorporates features to collect roof water through chain link and flow down into trenches for harvesting. A water body using the rain water is getting carved out. Most of the blocks, including hostels, get equipped with solar panels and hot water too is to be made available using them. “Even the outdoor lighting will tap into solar energy only,” he says. Most of the places come with grass pavers to help better percolation of water.

“The campus is ringed with a road for fire tenders, material truck and movement of such vehicles. Else, the entire space is designed to keep away the regular vehicles and only battery operated ones will be used,” Mr. Venkat explains. It is a space meant to be either on foot or on bicycles, for which tracks are being laid all along.

Keeping in tune with green concepts, local construction material such as Tandoor and Shahbad stone for flooring and flyash is being used extensively. For finish, ‘Batana’ is also put to use as it ensures natural insulation and hollow clay tiles goes into making terraces.