During the ongoing COP26 session, the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, Suhasini Ayer, an architect from Auroville, was honored with the Green Solutions Award for the Humanscapes Habitat project of developing an affordable and sustainable housing hub in the universal township.
The Humanscapes project, which is an experimental project with a population of about 500 people, also aims to serve as a springboard for research into future advancements that can endure the effects of climate change.
At the climate summit, the project won an award in the Sustainable Construction category. The Green Solutions Awards 2020-2021 is an international competition organized by the Construction21 network, a collaborative and networking platform for sustainability stakeholders, that recognizes exemplary solutions integrated into buildings, districts, and infrastructures that contribute to the fight against climate change. At the worldwide level, 192 candidates competed in the competition.
Ms. Ayer, a graduate of the ‘Delhi School of Planning and Architecture,’ came to Auroville in 1985 and is a co-founder of the Auroville Centre for Scientific Research, which is dedicated to research and experimentation in the fields of appropriate building materials and technologies, water management, renewable energy, solar passive/climatic architecture, and sustainable urban planning.
Humanscapes Habitat, meantime, is an applied research and demonstration project of Sustainable and Integrated Urban Living for benchmarking in habitat as a course correction for a sustainable and harmonious model of development.
Apart from being sustainable, this mixed-use development of residences, communities, and workspaces aims to address the issues of skill development and capacity building of construction labour, who are mostly distressed migrants in India, in order to improve their economic situation and reduce construction waste in the habitat sector in order to meet India’s commitment to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). As part of the sustainable human settlement mission, the habitat project has incorporated five goals, including constructing a sustainable built environment with solar passive building design and efficient functional space layout.