The people’s architect


Poor people in Kerala State, India, have no doubt about climate change. They have suffered devastating floods twice in recent years, with 5.4 million people badly affected. The state government is doing something about it: redesigning houses and settlements to minimise damage from future floods, with special regard for the poorest in society.

Isn’t that the proper function of government, to serve its people?

But that’s not what this post is about, but about architect Gopal Shankar. He has been pioneering sustainable architecture since the 1990s, and has been involved in building 100,000 structures ranging from huge temples to humble little peasant cottages.

His heart is not in the spectacular, but in the useful. He builds from low impact, local materials like clay dug up from the building site, and bamboo.

He has designed a cheap, easy-to-build home for the poorest. Despite the mud architecture, these structures are flood-proof.

All the same, I’ve found a pic of something beautiful he has produced:

About Dr Bob Rich

I am a professional grandfather. My main motivation is to transform society to create a sustainable world in which my grandchildren and their grandchildren in perpetuity can have a life, and a life worth living. This means reversing environmental idiocy that's now threatening us with extinction, and replacing culture of greed and conflict with one of compassion and cooperation.
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