Nokha Village Community Centre by Sanjay Puri
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Nokha Village Community Centre: a green oasis in the Indian desert

Topped by a roof garden, the complex features a sandstone façade with a perforated pattern inspired by traditional Rajasthani architecture

Sanjay Puri Architects

Nokha Village Community Centre by Sanjay Puri
By Editorial Staff -

In the vastness of the desert region of Nokha, in the State of Rajasthan, India, Sanjay Puri Architects has created the Nokha Village Community Centre, a cultural oasis aimed at enriching the lives of local people, especially children. The complex emerges from among the dunes like a majestic green platform, contrasting with the endless expanse of sand and its flowing shapes.

The complex was conceived as an enormous spiral rising from the ground, whose height increases as you walk from the outside towards the inside of the spiral. The volume stands out from the ocher shades of the surrounding landscape with its roof garden, which not only has spaces for outdoor leisure activities but also spectacular views of the Nokha region.

The decision to include a green roof was largely dictated by the need for heat mitigation, with the temperature at these latitudes reaching 35–40 °C for eight months of the year.

Nokha Village Community Centre - Sanjay Puri Architects © Vinay Punjwani, courtesy of Sanjay Puri Architects

 

Nokha Village Community Centre: embracing forms

The enveloping shape of the complex delineates an open courtyard with amphitheater, a multifunctional space for hosting musical performances and conferences. Below its green roof, the main building has an oval library on the east side, which is available to the schools in the surrounding villages, and a museum, which encloses the courtyard.

A separate rectangular volume contains a cafeteria, restrooms, and a small store. Behind this section is the outdoor parking area.

The façade around the library is the typical local sandstone, sculpted with a geometric fretwork pattern. This elevation, inspired by traditional Rajasthan architecture, is the color of the sand, recreating the shades of the surrounding desert.

Nokha Village Community Centre - Sanjay Puri Architects © Vinay Punjwani, courtesy of Sanjay Puri Architects

 

Soft light for a timeless space

Inside the building, the effect is of a timeless space, where light filters softly through the holes in the sandstone façade to create an intimate mood while also reducing heat entry. The museum is lit indirectly from above via recesses in the walls that run along the rooftop above and project crescent-shaped beams of light onto the floor.

For greater energy efficiency, the project was designed to reduce heat absorption through the use of vegetation and sandstone screening surfaces, as well as a rainwater recycling system, making the structure a sustainable green oasis in the desert.

 

>>> The Sky Deck 72 project, a residential tower designed by Sanjay Puri in the city of Ranchi, India, won the Housing/Future category of THE PLAN Award 2023

Credits

Location: Nokha, Rajasthan, India
Completion: 2024
Gross Floor Area: 1200 m2
Client: Padam Interiors
Architecture, Landscape and Interior Design: Sanjay Puri Architects
Structures: Vijaytech Consultants
Main Contractor: Jagram Suthar

Photography by Vinay Punjwan, courtesy of Sanjay Puri Architects

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