In August 2021, Amritha and Harshit had been all set to tie the knot. The couple additionally wished to begin this new chapter of their lives in a house of their very own.
Amritha (24), an actual property skilled, was certain that she wished a house that may be “sustainable in each respect”. It was with this straightforward ask that she reached out to architect Ammaar Aziz Chowdry of ED+ Structure — a sustainable structure wing of Eskay Design, established in 1988.
“Sustainability has been part of my private life as properly, not simply my skilled. I used to be taught to take care of nature proper from childhood. Sundays had been spent cleansing the seashore, as we lived a couple of minutes away from the ocean. I at all times knew my dream dwelling wanted to mirror the values that I used to be introduced up with,” she says.
Ammaar was very happy to get began on the venture that he describes to The Higher India as “one of many quickest tasks to finish”. It took them simply 4 months, from September 2021 to January 2022, to finish the 4,000 sq ft home, which the couple named ‘The Gully House’.
Located in Chennai’s Thiruvanmiyur, it’s a monument of a number of intertwined goals — the manifestation of the couple’s imaginative and prescient of their dream dwelling, the place that noticed them take their vows, and an imposing image of sustainability.
With its quaint but fashionable facade, the 6,300 sq ft beach-facing plot is designed in a means that one aspect faces the ocean, whereas additionally offering a spectacular view of the streets of Chennai.
The Gully House: A sustainable dream
Recounting the dialog he had with Amritha, Ammaar says he knew from the start that this venture could be very completely different from their standard ones.
“For starters, there weren’t any reference photos. Amritha and Harshit communicated their imaginative and prescient of their dwelling — one that may be climate-friendly, have near internet zero emissions, and be apt for a younger couple and their 4 canines to begin their lives.”
Apparently, the primary sketch they got here up with on butter paper was precisely what the ultimate consequence regarded like. “And that isn’t the one fascinating truth about the home,” he notes.
“As you enter the property, you’ll spot a tree proper on the entrance. It was planted by Amritha’s grandfather 40 years in the past and we designed the house across the tree. At the moment it divides the property into two halves — with the backyard on one aspect and the parking area on the opposite.”
A artistic design philosophy
The eclectic interiors of the house can exude finesse, however don’t be fooled, Ammar tells us. “Each nook and nook has been designed with a sustainable angle whereas taking into consideration the house’s proximity to the ocean,” he factors out.
“For instance, the partitions of the house. There may be minimal use of cement. The Gully House faces the east, which signifies that it has an amazing view of the ocean but additionally will get the brunt of the solar. To counter this, we used porotherm blocks with half-cut bricks on both aspect, thus forming 350 mm thick partitions. The double insulated partitions assist entice the warmth getting into the home.”
Two elements performed a task with regard to the home windows — privateness and air flow.
“The home windows open out to a beautiful view of the ocean, however there’s a sizzling breeze as properly that is available in. So, we got here up with a window system that has inward-opening glass shutters and outward-opening aluminium shutters with operable louvres, which may be adjusted in keeping with the time of the day,” Ammaar provides.
The naturally polished kota flooring displays the warmth whereas the bedrooms boast terrazzo flooring — comprised of marble scraps and recycled glass chips. “The ceiling is from the place the utmost warmth enters the house. A metallic framework would get corroded from the salty air because the ocean is shut by. So, we added a layer of terracotta and poured concrete over it. The terracotta acts as an insulation materials and retains the house cool moreover lowering the quantity of concrete used.”
To offer further cooling, a swimming pool has been constructed above the central room.
Impressed by the gullies of Chennai
The couple loves internet hosting individuals and events, so that they wished the home to be designed in a means that one can simply have a view of the opposite rooms from any level within the dwelling. “So we created an open staircase that connects all of the rooms.”
For a similar cause, the house is constructed at an elevation, he provides. “There may be an elevation of 1.5 m by the backyard, whereas the parking zone sees a dip of 1.5 m. This steep topology ensures that even the bottom ground will get a view of the ocean. In truth, each ground is staggered by 1.5 m on both aspect,” explains Ammaar, including that this side can be the inspiration for the identify of the house.
“Within the olden occasions, individuals would sit on their balconies and watch the gullies beneath. We wished to recreate this idea. On the centre of the house is a triple-volume area often called the Nice Room, from the place the home windows open out into the gullies and streets of Chennai.”
The price of the constructing amounted to Rs 3,800 per sq ft, however Amritha and Harshit say The Gully House has been a dream come true, because it stands tall in opposition to the setting solar on the horizon, a logo of how huge goals and splendid areas may be constructed on a basis of sustainability.
Edited by Asha Prakash