July 26, 2002 

Inspiration for the day

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Yujin Pandala, Sreemangalam, Mathilil.P.O, Kollam 691601

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When Jithendran, Joint Commissioner, Rural Development Department and his wife Shima, Lecturer, S.N.College, Kollam approached architect Yujin Pandala, Sreemangalam, Mathilil.P.O, Kollam  for a design of their dream house, they weren’t prepared for what he had to offer: a house made of mud.

After weighing pros and cons, when they finally agreed to the concept, Prof. Pandala went into action.  On a rubble masonry foundation, the architect built the walls using clay-rich soil stabilized with 5% cement.

The walls were then soaked with wet cloth for 2 months to gain strength.  On top of the walls a fero-cement roof followed by a layer of bitumen and roof tiles were laid.

The house, ‘Bodhi’, looks like a giant mushroom.  Inside the house, almarah, bed, TV stand, table and stools were made of clay.

Prof.Yujin, who is head of Architecture Department in T.K.M.College of Engineering, Kollam, says that clay is the most suitable material for building homes in Kerala.  While construction of ordinary houses involves 70% material cost and 30% labour, for a mud house the material cost is only 30%.  By utilizing the balance amount for labour, a house with better facilities can be constructed.

Prof.Pandala is now on leave to implement a project for constructing mud houses in the adivasi villages of Bihar.  Bisop Jerome Nagar Shopping Centre, Kollam and Spiritual Animation Centre, Kottiyam are some of the other projects completed by him.


Courtesy: T.K.Sunil Kumar(text), Robert Vinod (photo), Karshakashree, February 2001

Contributed by: Administrator


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