Veer Sawarkar Sports Complex is located in the eastern part of Ahmedabad, which is largely an industrial area with defunct textile mills. An initiative to propel development in the area, resulted in the building of civic services of which this complex is one. Going to the site, we felt that the vision of the project could not be complete by just providing a few sporting arenas. It had to come together as something more inclusive for the larger community. The program eventually included a children’s crèche, a restaurant, a library, an internet café, an auditorium, some conferencing, an amphitheatre and a public garden. The project thus, posits itself between a formal institution and an urban public space with all its relevant elements of seats, plaza, landscape, verandahs and steps. Crucial to the success of the project were transparence and ease of movement, both of which we consider critical to the success of any urban public space.
The architecture is robust to handle extremes of wear and tear. Its solidity is mellowed by filtered and modulated light, bringing in poetry and a human scale to the project. Specific functional spaces and ambiguous social spaces interweave with each other creating a truly public space. It has raised the benchmark for public spaces, giving dignity to that cross section of society which otherwise get ignored. Since its inauguration, the project is extensively used, not only for neighborhood activities, but also city scale public activities.