Faculty: Anand Sonecha

Dissolving Boundaries: Children Library at Loving Community

The studio focused on the Loving community in Vastral, formed in 1968 by people affected with leprosy, who have migrated from different parts of India. The neighborhood has 450 residents, from which a few still have reminiscences of the disease, even if cured. Today, around a hundred children are living in the community, their homes have a single room with families comprising of up to six members. The houses don’t have enough space for the residents and no proper space for children to study. The studio centers on the design of a small children’s library. A place where they can meet, study or be by themselves while also acting as a meeting point for children from different neighborhoods. The social stigma revolving around such communities, push them towards isolation and they end up as islands in the social fabric of the city. The studio triggered discussions on how these boundaries between the Loving community and the neighborhood be dissolved. Questioning the role of an architect in today’s times, the studio explored how equitable and inclusive spaces can be created and discussed ways in which architecture can be a means to improve lives.