Of the four ‘masters of modern architecture’ (Walter Gropius, Frank Lloyd Wright, Le Corbusier, Mies van der Rohe) Corb was the most interested in the integration of architecture and landscape. His design for Chandigarh’s Capitol Complex is a major example of the Abstract Modern approach to landscape architecture. But it was also a disaster and it looks terrible. The explanations, as discussed in the above video, are in part bad maintenance and in part the high security which discourages visitors.
But, Corb’s design is of considerable interest: it is a really good example of really bad landscape architecture. In Space Syntax terms it is very poorly integrated with Chandigarh; it is abstract visual space – not social space or ecological space; it is far too European in conception; it is the world’s largest public square – and far too big. So what should be done? It needs a re-design which keeps the good features of Corb’s landscape architecture and rights its wrongs.
Four posts re Chandigarh urban planning, landscape architecture and garden design
- Chandigarh 1 (of 4): Le Corbusier’s urban design and planning
- Chandigarh 2 (of 4): The landscape architecture of Le Corbusier’s Capitol Complex
- Chandigarh 3 (of 4): The garden design of Nek Chand’s Illegal Rock Garden
- Chandigarh 4 (of 4): Pinjore Yadavindra Mughal garden design