Divya Nautiyal, Assoc. AIA; Dorian Sosa; Philip Miller, AIA; Zachary Wolk, Assoc. AIA; Stephen Perry; Nick Cooper, AIA
Structured Symbiosis shines a light on the Koli culture of Mumbai.
To the people of Mumbai, the word Koli is synonymous with the indigenous fisher folk of the island city. The Kolis have a treasure trove of practices, folk music, and dance that are continuously disappearing between the new generations. Their lives revolve around the sea, and their entire livelihoods depend on it. Stretching along the coastline, the small fishing village of Worli Koliwada consists of colorful makeshift homes, a web of imprinted patterns, and otis reserved for the weaving and repairing of fishing nets.
Of course, there is another picture that is often painted of Worli Koliwada - a juxtaposition of it and the high-rise luxury apartment buildings towering in the background. The contrast between the rich and poor is unmistakable, producing a conflicting environment between the two groups.
Structured Symbiosis aims to provide an inclusive approach to mixed-use housing to help defy the social segregation that exists between Worli Koliwada and the more affluent neighborhood around it. The major goal of the project is to celebrate and to progress the existing Koli culture and its historical significance, through a hierarchy of open spaces and spatial organization. This Structured Symbiosis is developed through community-oriented spaces and organized layouts with areas of pause, encouraging social interaction. Tight-knit streets, vibrant colors, and a strategically programmed landscape create a living environment bringing the Kolis and non-Kolis together.