2017 was a year of heritage demolition

2017 was a year of heritage demolition

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2017 may be a remarkable year for India which figured among the top ten countries in terms of number of skyscrapers completed with three completions. But 2017 was also a year when several heritage – old and architectural structures were demolished. This happened despite the strong protest by the heritage conservationists and public at large. Some of the buildings which henceforth you may find only in history books are

The Fraser Girls School, Odisha

The Fraser Girls School located at Kendrapara was demolished in September 2017 despite the public outcry against its demolition. It was a colonial-era 130-year-old building that once housed Odishas second oldest educational institution for girl students.

Binny Headquarters, Chennai

Heritage lovers of Chennai got a shock of their life when the historic headquarters of Binny Limited, landmark 200-year-old structure, which figures in the draft list of heritage buildings of the Chennai Metropolitan Development Authority was reduced to rubble. CMDA had graded the Binny Limited building as a Grade II heritage structure. Buildings in this category are local landmarks possessing special architectural or aesthetic merit and contributing to the image and identity of the region

Krumbiegel Lecture Hall, Bengaluru

Last year amid lot of protests and criticism by architects and historians of the city Krumbiegel Lecture Hall in the Lalbagh Botanical Garden in Bengaluru was razed to the ground by the Horticulture Department. According to the department the hall was in dilapidated condition and was irreparable. The hall was named after Gustav Hermann Krumbiegel, a German botanist who is largely responsible for turning Lalbagh into botanical wonder. The structure, built in 1860, was special because it hosted lectures as part of the horticulture school in Lalbagh.

The Hall of Nations, New Delhi, India

If the age of the building is the criteria to determine its importance, The Hall of Nations structure may not figure in any of the heritage list as it was less than five decades old. But the Hall was built to celebrate 25 years of Indian independence and also was regarded by many as architectural landmarks.

The Hall of Nations was inaugurated in 1972 by then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, and had been designed by Raj Rewal, who built the World Bank in New Delhi and was awarded the Gold Medal of the Indian institute of Architects in 1989. It was one of the largest space-frame structures in the world. But none of the halls were deemed heritage buildings and, in May,2017 the bulldozers had the last laugh.