Indian cities are plagued with issues such as lack of good quality public realm, insufficient green cover, lack of inclusive pedestrian infrastructure, unaffordable land market and an over-regulatory development framework. Many of these are resultant of an archaic idea of city planning and design, but can also be attributed to the effect of multiple city stakeholders and their interactions. These stakeholders (politicians, citizen groups, slum dwellers, architects, engineers, administrators, urban planners/designers etc.) and their competing views towards city design and planning materialize in the form of National/State level policies, city-level development plans, city-level building regulations or outcomes of a judicial proceeding. All of which culminate in tangible change.
The course aimed to understand this narrative of city-making with a specific focus on land markets, public realm and built form. Two methods were to explore, 1. Evidence-based research to build the narrative of planning and design of the city and 2. Design as a method of research to comment on planning & design practices at the site level. The studio was based in Mumbai, owing to a long history of planning and design interventions.