Karan Grover and Associates

Architect Hitesh has worked with Karan Grover and Associates for one year in 2004.

Biography of Karan Grover

A graduate of the MS University of Baroda, Karan Grover was selected as one of 14 architects in Asia for the "Roots" Exhibition sponsored by the Fujiya Corporation in Tokyo. He is the Founding Secretary of the Heritage Trust, Baroda - a group of local citizens working on the conservation of the Heritage of the city. He has been President of the Heritage Trust since 2001 and is the winner of several All India competitions including the Vidhan Sabha for the Goa Legislature Assembly.

Grover returned to his alma mater as a visiting Professor of the MS University and is an active speaker in various forums in India and abroad.

KGA is a prestigious firm and has won many awards. The firm won five Architectural Awards in 1997, including the IIA-Snowcem Award for "Excellence in Urban Architecture" for General Electrical Plastics India project at Gurgaon; the JIIA Commendation Award for "Excellence in Industrial Architecture" for Castrol India Ltd. factory at Silvassa; the IIID-MK India Award for "Excellence in Commercial Interiors" for the Showroom of Sanghvi Exports Pvt. Ltd. at Mumbai; the IIID-MK India Award for "Excellence in Corporate Interiors" for the Godrej Transelecktra Research & Development Centre at Vikhroli, Bombay; and the JIIA Award for "Excellence in Residential Architecture" House for Urvashi Devi of Baria at Baroda.

KGA is also involved with Heritage Conservation Programmes, and has prepared a Master Plan for the Heritage Conservation of Buildings and Precincts in Baroda.

The Heritage Trust received international recognition, as Champaner won the nomination as one of 100 Most Endangered Sites of the World Monuments Watch List, New York, for the year 2000.

Champaner-Pavagadh was declared a World Heritage Site on July 2, 2004 at the World Heritage Convention of UNESCO in Suzhou, China. This is the first time that the work of an NGO - Heritage Trust (of which Karan Grover is the President), has been instrumental in getting World Heritage Site status for a site - the first site in Gujarat and the 25th in India.


Philosophy of Karan Grover and Associates

Karan Grover and Associates though a young architectural practice, has emerged into a multi-disciplinary organization with an in-house engineering team which is seen as an integral part of architectural design activity.

Some of the fundamental values that the architectural practice beliefs stem from the standpoint of creating a 'Contemporary' Indian architectural idioms and language drawing essences from Tradition and Culture in very fundamental planes.

The project of 'Traditionalism' is then explored as an attempt at re-instating and reinterpreting some of the fundamental forms that have shaped our architectures over centuries - yet dramatically opposing the ideas of cosmetic duplication of historical forms and elements. The work instead focuses on grasping or attempting to grasp some of the fundamental essentials.

With these values as a springboard, the practice attempts to conceive buildings and design projects that are very Contemporary, at times Futuristic in their physical and architectural expressions, technological and material innovations and use.

In the sense architectural and design activity is pursued as a 'Contextual' project - with the idea of creating 'Places of Identity' be it, Public or Commercial buildings, Cultural or Institutional projects, Housing, Corporate or Interior designing. It's in this direction that the firm firmly believes in.

The design work and projects are seen as opportunities to explore and orientate in this particular direction in architecture.

Grover's architecture reflects his concerns with the heritage and built landscape of India. He decided quite early in his professional life that India demanded something more than merely adopting the western norms of architecture. The long architectural history of this country and the development of its style to cater to climatic needs provided the framework for this search.

In the Institute of Plasma Research, Ahmedabad Grover has used the contained landscape, the courtyard, axis screens, jails and water, all elements which have had significance in the traditional Indian architectural context. This building was an accepted nomination for the Aga Khan Award. In the Institute of Quality for CII and ABB, Bangalore, traditional wind towers were used in place of air-conditioning. This was a first for non-air-conditioned projects of this scale. It won the IIA (Indian Institute of Architects) Snowcem Award for Excellence in Corporate Architecture. In 1997, Grover won all the five major awards in the country. These were for Excellence in Urban, Corporate, Industrial, Residential and Retail architecture. He was also identified as one of the 14 important Asian architects for the next millennium. His work was displayed at the 'ROOTS' exhibition in Tokyo.

'Green' architecture was the next logical direction for Grover. He became the first architect in the world to win the Platinum Award for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) from the US Building Council in 2002. The award was for the CII-Sohrabji Godrej Green Business Centre at Hyderabad, a collaborative project between US AID, Government of Andhra Pradesh and CII.

Karan Grover, the architect, is today working towards the need for practicing 'Green' architecture inspiring students and fellow architects. A need based on ecological and environmental concerns; a need which involves us all as inhabitants of this planet.

To know more about Karan Grover and Associates visit www.kga.co.in