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Bird Well. 

“Re-imagining the medium of observation”

Bird Observatory.
Guide : Shraddha Sejpal
K.R.V.I.A, B. Arch 6th Semester, 2016
Location : Banni Grasslands, Gujarat, India.

Keywords: Bird observatory, birds nest, wells, object-viewer relationship, Nests as landmarks

Banni Grasslands Reserve or Banni grasslands form a belt of arid grassland ecosystem on the outer southern edge of the desert of the marshy salt flats of Rann of Kutch in Kutch District, Gujarat State, India. They are known for rich wildlife and biodiversity. There are more than 300 bird species with around 100 of them being migratory birds , not all birds are water birds and most of them make their nests on hard lands. The ecosystem is sensitive and slowly degrading. The water level in Banni grasslands rises up to 1.5 meters in rainy season. The Primary goal of the observatory is to record / create a data base of the fragile ecology in order to preserve it and at the same time to provide a place for the general public to understand this ecology.


Building in a ecologically sensitive environment, the building needs to respond to the nature and also the habitat. The idea of intervention evolved through the lens of improving the object - viewer relationship. Thus, evolved these well like temporary structures, that are scattered all around in the landscape. These wells(nests) stand-out and become markers into landscape. It becomes a place where birds can perch and build their nests. The intervention merges with the landscape, allowing these nests to pop-up. The built form is scattered around these nests with landscaped roofs onto which visitors can loiter. These roofs modulate to reach out towards the bird wells where researchers and tourists can observe the birds much closely. Thereby improving interaction between the humans and birds; observing them closely rather than by the use of an instrument. Breaking away from the high activity zones are these pathways that lead into the grasslands improving the chances of encounter with the flora and fauna there. 


Light wells inside the building

Breaking the mass and allows more porosity.

Separating the mass according to program agglomerations.

Pushing all functions to the ground. Separating the wells from the building.

Bird well also a light well.

Adds to the horizontal perspectives of a person.

Iterations of relationship between program and bird well.

Roof modulates to reach towards the wells and also hugs the ground.

Iterations in plan:

Iterations in section:



Improving the viewer-subject relationship

The intervention is situated away from the main road and only accessible by foot. The Bird wells are scattered all around the landscape with pathways that connect them.


Location of bird well

Roof plan
Roof plan

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Ground floor
Ground floor

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Ground floor extended
Ground floor extended

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