Wednesday, August 1, 2012

New building technologies

I was, till a little while ago, at the National Seminar on Building Technology. This is being held at the India Habitat Centre, Delhi. Today was it's second day; I could not attend the first day as I was in Hyderabad yesterday.
Even during the course of today, I got some great ideas. Some are:
(1) output parameter oriented building tenders were now being increasingly used. This encourages new technology like monolithic pre-fab technology, mortar-less self locking bricks, use of roof and wall insulation etc
(2) concepts of 4R (reduce, recycle, reuse - this we knew - and regulate. Idea is to reduce the colossal waste in construction industry by integrating process design with architectural design, lean construction techniques, embodied energy etc
(3) under an initiative called CSIR800, in the 12th Plan period, the research institutions will post all findings on web for general use and adoption
(4) there is already a building called "Sunya" that uses zero energy. I intend to find out more about it.

Going to airport now to catch the 6.10pm Indigo flight to Kolkata
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Here is a clipping from Times of India:
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Here is another clipping from Times of India:


  1. Not related to the topic of the post but on an important issue.

    This is also not about criticizing you or the present Govt. Definitely I feel some hope and optimism and that is the reason I keep on revisiting your blog.

    This is about the financial hub in New Town. I think for 2-3 times I mentioned about hard-selling the project, marketing it at the international level, Giving advertisements in world wide business and financial magazines, doing roadshows and promotions in top global financial hubs and stop looking for doles from the PSU banks just because our govt is an important coalition partner in the centre. And I think its not just me , any sensible person would have told the same fact that giving small advertisements in Kolkata edition of Times of India is not enough for setting up of a financial hub. Obviously equally ineffecive is just giving a stall in a State Govt sponsored fair ( Pragati) and hoping that global investors would line up in New Town.

  2. I am pretty sure once again that meeting heads of some Govt Banks in New Delhi on 23rd August would not generate a buzz about financial hub in New Town. We have to create a team of smart officials and PR agencies and do roadshows in Bombay at least and also in Singapore, Hong Kong, Dubai, London and New York which are the global financial hubs and invite banks, insurance companies, private equity players etc i.e from all walks of financial services industry.

    I would be very happy if I am proven wrong in some alternate investment attraction model. However in an investment starved state like West Bengal where all most every household has some person working outside the state for livelihood, I think it will not be a very bad idea to go for the traditional investment attraction model i.e marketing to get things done fast and try out alternate and experimental things in parallel.

    Sorry, if I am sounding a little rude but sometimes things need to be done with a sense of urgency and I have high hopes on you.

  3. @Abhishek:Thanks for the FB and Linked in add.So you know what we are doing on macro-micro integration.Spot on about the "thoughts shared".
    Unfortunately the "Team" capacity building is the biggest challenge.Yesterday in Delhi the IIT-TIE-NDelhi trust for creating BOP entrepreneurs was formally "kick started". One of the "biggest opportunities lies in Urban Space management and planning".In a scenario like Rajarhat and Financial hub creation.You are right that the Business model of the Hub has to be ethically "marketed and positioned",unfortunately this was not thought through.So yes a comprehensive benefit matrix of the Hub has to be widely circulated.But on the same note.The State has enough wealth to self finance the Hub by attractive PPP local partnership on Cooperative basis.Serves and solves all.Most Global Green Economy hubs are moving that way.
    Waste,water and wealth management.The triple bottom line approach.People.Purpose.Perfection.:)

    1. Totally agree with you Souman.

    2. Souman,

      Do you know what I feel bad? Even after 65 years of independence, we cannot expect a Govt department to think of marketing in a proper way or to expect PWD to explore different road financing options.

      Even now, we have such a shabby area like Burrabazar in a civilized city or we do not find any plans of the govt or the officials to renovate the existing markets like what has been planned in College Street Market. You can see how dilapidated the condition of the markets in Salt Lake are. I am not even talking about the century-old markets in city like Chandni market, Koley Market, Jagubabur Bazar etc. Its not always about money. Planning, execution and marketing are totally missing in Govt Departments.

  4. Abhishek "That is the Challenge".The work attitude, ethics and capacity.All need upgrades.Kolkata accumulates more then 8000 tons of waste everyday, since 1910 the whole maint schedule hasn't been followed.From a town Designed for 1 Million we have 20 million .We sure have problems.But sure solutions are possible.It is Possible to Get my City of Joy to be the Capitol of Culture, Cleanliness and Creation.Unless the upgrades,software,middleware and hardware integration are done.Am afraid piece meal action will happen.PWD needs a whole shake up.It should change its motto to Proactive Working Drive:)).

  5. For things like international fin hubs, where those step in they think of 50 years ahead and look a place and a hinterland which must have adequate infrastructure, sound economic potential and third its social fabric is stable and business friendly. I find the timing of the bid at this juncture is wrong that's why poor response . The current new govt is just getting cosy in their seats, not yet appears to be appeasing business. Infrastructure policy and execution in and around Rajarhat-Newtown is still a long wish list and here also no continuity of plan that earstwhile govt initiated.
    Further,Koltata needs a lot of media publicity( that we lack now) because Kolkata is a business history sheeter. One incident like in Maruti factory in Maneswar does not evoke industial panick as much if the same would have happened in Bengal. That's the baggage of history we carry. On the third issue,when PC comes and tell that on political violence we are top of the chart. There can be political disagreement, political debate but no violence.
    It is absolutely true as Bengal carry the baggage of history since pre-independence. This has changed from anti-British to anti-other party. Let's grow out of this vicious cycle and improve our social fabric.
    Out of all these issues, HIDCO has control over its infrastrcuture initiative. Let that happen then the response would be a bit better
    But a good news!MaCkinsey report June 2012 - upcoming Global Urban centers of 2025, Kolkata finds its mention along with Dhaka and Chitagong of Bangladesh. here is the link for download of full report.