Excerpt: Flying Walls Hostel is a housing project designed by an architectural firm Studio Dhulia. The flying walls hostel project was commissioned to us by a company intending to provide their workers with a living space that promotes community living and wellbeing.
[Text as submitted by the Architects] The flying walls hostel project was commissioned to us by a company intending to provide their workers with a living space that promotes community living and wellbeing. The site is located on the outskirts of Rajkot in a developing area with educational, industrial, and hospitality buildings coming up. Despite the development, the site’s location provides unending views of the agricultural, grazing lands and the horizon.
The functional requirement was straightforward. The lower level of the building was dedicated to the general managers and officials while the higher level was dedicated to other workers of different ranks. The company had 5 GMs and 50 – 75 other employees. The requirement divided the built mass into five equal levels with a simple floor plan and a site and services approach. As the inhabitants hail from different parts of the country, a friendly and open built form environment was necessary to promote a healthy social bond amongst everyone.
The weather protection elements were primarily worked on to provide ambient spaces throughout the day. The heat from the sun after midday heats the building surfaces exposed to the west the most. We staggeringly stacked the walls above cantilevered slabs to create the necessary barrier to tackle this.
This process generated an idea to incorporate this to form the building’s language. What if we could cantilever the walls out of their resting slabs? As if the walls were flying out from the facade and balancing over the central frame structure. These flying walls form an exciting range of shadows over the balconies creating a frame visually appealing. When pictured with the context, a slight contrast is always maintained, neither overpowering nor merging to create the identity and incite the occupants’ sense of pride and belonging.