“Travelling is an integral part of my learning. Twice in every year, I plan a holiday to different places. From different places I learn how to fill the spaces.”
The Creators is an architectural firm consistently engaged in delivering high impact commercial structure. It has as its Proprietor, Mr. Chander Prakash Kaushal, a master of the art of organising space. He is known to build for the masses. His architecture is of the people, by the people, for the people. The veteran talks to Divjot Kamboj about his venture, profession, life and much more…
Has architecture always been your passion?
As a child, I always dreamt of being a politician. By the time I reached the last year of my school, I happened to crack the exam for the Architecture College. So you can say that it was because of academics that I paved my way into this field. During an internship in the third year of my graduation, I got to witness the actual work like site analysis and measurements and coming up with municipal drawings. This wonderful opportunity of learning as to how do these professionals manage spaces enlightened the architect in me.
Is there any change you have witnessed in the world of architecture from the time when you began until today?
I have a research and site experience of over 32 years now. I have witnessed the transformation of architecture myself. Initially, anything and everything was manual; we had to sketch our projects by hand. In those days an architect had to spend most of his time with his drawing board. Early 2000 was the era of transition. Within 4-5 years all sort of works were computerised, academically everything was upgraded, the market soon adapted to the change.
People say that architecture is a very demanding profession. What is your take on that?
Designing is a process and a process always needs time. The more you get into it, the better will come out. It is with the inputs from the clients and staff that the smallest details are worked out and a plan of action is built. Regular visits for site supervision, attending over 200 phone calls every day, replying to emails, maintaining the public relations and ensuring repute with the government, all this is a part of the regular routine. This profession demands the best of you in all the ways.
You are known for designing commercial and mega projects. What made you chose commercial projects over the residential ones?
At the time of my first ever training, I got an opportunity to work for the renowned architect Charles Correa. It was a low rising apartment in Delhi. I liked the idea of building for masses. In the year 1987, I came across a tender for group housing. I applied for the same and prepared for the technical appraisal. There was a bit of beginners luck and I had nailed it this side. Another jackpot that I cracked was in the year 1990. It was another group housing project for HouseFED Punjab in Mohali and Ludhiana. Since then I have been majorly associated with the designing of various Institutional and group housing projects coming up either with joint or private sector.
Is there any star architect who has inspired you in your journey?
I have been greatly inspired by the works of Charles Correa. He was a legendary architect worldwide. Another is my mentor Jasbir Sawhney. I have been associated with him for the designing and supervision of Terrace Tower Apartments in Abu-Dhabi.
What are the greatest challenges that you face in the kind of projects that you handle?
We at The Creators majorly design for the developers. Our work focuses on building for the masses. We need to take care of the needs of the total community. So as such our work is different than that of other architects. They only matter that was once a challenge for me was that I had to compromise with the designed as the builders wanted to cut down maximum costs so as to generate maximum profits. Given the constraints, I learnt how to give my best so nothing really seems like a real challenge now.
What is your take on the environmental and sustainable architecture?
A major feature of all the projects that I undertake is the sub soil treatment. Prior to the construction, we collect the upper layer of the soil and utilise it in the green patches later. We build boundary walls around the site and cover it with sheets so that the environment does not get polluted. And as far as the design is concerned, cavity walls guard the building from extreme weather conditions and treatment of the roof ensures long life. Taking care of light, ventilation, rain water harvesting and waste water treatment makes a project sustainable.
What has always kept you going?
Ours is a profession that is offering always something new. So the work itself has always kept me going. Travelling is an integral part of my learning. Twice in every year, I plan a holiday to different places. From different places I learn how to fill the spaces.
A piece of advice for the young and creative people aspiring to become architects?
Hard work is the key. With the technology you can only do better drafting where as designing would need your sincere and creative efforts. Architecture is a visual art and the buildings speak for themselves. Keep working hard till the day your work speaks for itself. Be original and at the same time realistic. Know that you are aspiring to be a creator.
“We build boundary walls around the site and cover it with sheets so that the environment does not get polluted.”