An Indian delegation of architects and city planners from Mumbai visiting Copenhagen, with founder of the Urban Vision think-tank Prathima Manohar in the checkered jacket. Photo from The 8 House.
By Michael Rothenborg
The solutions to the challenges of urbanisation utilised by cities like Copenhagen are not confined to the Nordic countries. They can be used all over the world, also in developing countries such as India.
That was the conclusion when a delegation of architects and urban planners from India visited Copenhagen this week.
“The basic challenges in the Nordics and in developing countries are in many ways the same,” said Prathima Manohar, founder of the Mumbai based liveable cities think-tank ‘The Urban Vision’. “How do you build sustainable and liveable buildings and infrastructure when cities are growing so rapidly? We have all learnt in school and university that it is necessary to be people-centric but we tend to forget it in practice. Here in Copenhagen we see it put into action in a very usable way.”
During a tour of Copenhagen the delegation saw several examples of these Nordic solutions, with visits to The 8 House and the Mountain residencies in Ørestaden - projects that Ramboll has worked on in collaboration with architectural firm BIG: Bjarke Ingels Group.
The delegation was not only impressed by the architecture, but also the vast green and blue areas that surround them.
“Very often it does not cost more to enhance sustainability and liveability with trees, parks and small rivers or canals instead of just building in a grey concrete style that is not people-centric,” said Prathima Manohar pointed.
Ramboll Project Director Søren Hansen also took the group to Nordhavn – a new area of Copenhagen where 25 percent of the apartments are designated social housing; a fact that didn’t escape the delegation who noted that this would be a good way to ensure diversity in India.