Residence Antilia, Altamount Road, Mumbai, India
…Tallest Single Residence, Tallest Living Wall and Tallest Garden… and a Revolution in Skyscraper design
Like it, love it, or hate it, Mumbai is soon to be home to one of the world’s greenest, and most revolutionary skyscrapers in recent decades.
Designed as a controversial landmark project for Reliance Corporation, and a building that will also be the residence of Reliance Chairman Mukesh Ambani, the Perkins + Will-designed 27 storey tower already under construction is planned to be the greenest in Mumbai. Like most capital projects there, and reflective of Indian architecture and ancient Indian Vaastu Design, these buildings are to be garden buildings that, also being skyscrapers, appropriately embody the garden-in-the-sky concept.
Residence Antilia goes one step further. It is designed as the largest and tallest “living wall” in the world — a seamless, vertical garden that encompasses all walls of the building climbing to the 40th floor. A modern day Hanging Gardens with a revolutionary design that stretches the boundaries of architecture and engineering, and questions traditional skyscraper design.
But like all things, erm, ‘Skyscrapery’ in Mumbai, this project is not without its controversy. Ignoring the issue of “if” it should be built, I’m just going to focus on the building itself and its design. For more information originally posted by me on Skyscrapercity.com, read on!…
Indian tycoon Mukesh Ambani, chairman of Reliance Industries, India’s largest private sector company, has been mooting the idea of a groundbreaking residence for his family for almost a decade. As is company is leading the charge in Indian real estate, with massive SEZs planned to come up across the country, Ambani wanted his residence, located at Altamount Road, in the heart of Mumbai’s skyscraper construction scene, to reflect the future of Indian construction.
The design of the Residence Antilia, as it came to be called, was kept a close secret even after construction started a couple months ago. In early May, 2007, the architects released the building’s design to the public on their website.
As I mentioned before, this building is designed as the largest and tallest “living wall” in the world — a seamless, vertical garden that encompasses all walls of the building climbing all the way up to the 173rd meter. Within this Vaastu tradition, the spine is regarded as the main source of support of the building, symbolically leading upward toward enlightenment. The various floor planes encompass a variety of garden tiers, terraces, water falls, ponds, recreational facilities, and enclosed, living areas that takes advantage of the most spectacular views of Mumbai and its waterfront.
You can see this goal in even the original plan of the tower designed by SITE Architecture and Design:
The building’s height is significant. At 173m, it will be one of the tallest buildings in Mumbai. Although it only has only 27 floors, due to the non-standard design of the building, using the Indian construction standard of about 3.5m/floor, it will have the virtual height of a 50 storey tower, and will reach toward the nearby Imperial Twin Towers in height.
The tower will have 6 floors of parking; several floors of just gardens; a couple “entertainment” floors including a massive theater; 2 floors of guest apartments, and various floors dedicated to the kitchen, laundry and other services. Reliance Corporate offices will be in the bottom floors and the private Ambani family residence will make up the topmost several floors. A helipad is designed on top, but there is mixed reports on whether this feature has been actually approved by the authorities.
Construction is well underway, can can be seen in the skyline. With nearly two floors being added every day, construction is expected to be completed by November, 2008.
Here’s an article on the project, but I have to warn you all… I suspect a whole lot of this article is rampant speculation. And hell yes I question the integrity of Mumbai’s sensationalist yellow media.
Mumbai Mirror Epaper: Mukesh Ambani’s Mansion in the Air
The 27-storey glass-fronted building will have parking for 168 cars, three helipads, a theatre and a staff of 600 for its upkeep
01 June, 2007
ANAND BIRAI AND SUDHIR SURYWANSHI
You may have read details about Mukesh Ambani’s new house-in-the-making at Altamount Road, but even as work on its construction goes on in full swing, here on your right is the first picture of what it will look like when it’s complete.
Mumbai Mirror is in possession of the entire architectural plan for Residence Antilia (as the house is going to be called, after a mythical island), the subject of enormous curiosity in the city ever since the Reliance Industries Ltd chairman purchased the 4,532 sq mt plot in 2002.
The plan, drawn up by the firm Perkins+Will, reveals that the house will resemble a virtual glass palace, with entertainment centres, a health club, a swimming pool and various green spots thrown in for good measure.
Construction of Mukesh Ambani’s new house at Altamount Road, where real estate prices are now in the region of Rs 75,000 per sq ft, began in late 2006, and the first six floors are already in place now. The building is expected to be complete in September 2008.
According to the plan, the house will rise to a height of 173.12 meters, equivalent to that of a regular 60-storeyed residential building. However, Antilia will have only 27 storeys in all, which means each floor will have a ceiling considerably higher than the current average of nearly three meters.
SIX FLOORS FOR PARKING
The first six floors — which have come up — will be reserved for parking alone, and that too for cars belonging only to Mukesh’s family. Space for a total of 168 ‘imported’ cars has been earmarked here.
FLOOR FOR CAR MAINTENANCE
Sources said the Ambanis would prefer to have all their cars serviced and maintained at an in-house service centre. This centre will be set up on the seventh floor.
The eighth floor will have an entertainment centre comprising a mini-theatre with a seating capacity of 50.
BALCONIES WITH GARDENS
The rooftop of the mini-theatre will serve as a garden, and immediately above that, three more balconies with terrace gardens will be independent floors.
THE ‘HEALTH’ FLOORS
While the ninth floor will a ‘refuge’ floor — meant to be used for rescue in emergencies — two floors above that will be set aside for ‘health.’ One of these will have facilities for athletics and a swimming pool, while the other will have a health club complete with the latest gym equipment.
There will be a two-storeyed glass-fronted apartment for the Ambani family’s guests above the health floors. One more refuge floor and one floor for mechanical works will be built on top of these apartments.
The four floors at the top, that will provide a view of the Arabian Sea and a superb view of the city’s skyline, will be for Mukesh, his wife Neeta, their three children and Mukesh’s mother Kokilaben.
AIR SPACE FLOOR
According to the plan, two floors above the family’s residence will be set aside as maintenance areas, and on top of that will be an “air space floor,” which will act as a control room for helicopters landing on the helipad above.
The plan states that three helipads are to be built on the terrace.
However, Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation officials told this paper that permission for the helipads has not been granted yet. “The residential plans were approved threefour years ago. Two levels of basement have also been shown in the proposed project,” Sudhir Shinde, deputy engineer at the BMC’s building proposals department said.
Nearly 600 staffers are expected to work fulltime in the building, sources said.
According to BMC records, the total area of Mukesh’s Altamount Road plot is 4,532.39 square meters. The proposed built-up area is 4,778.09 square meters (only for residential purposes), and the permissible built-up area 4,939.81 square meters.
Now before some people get all coo coo for cocopuffs over the “600 staff” estimate (and by who’s estimation, I really must wonder!), like so many hyper-reactive bloggers out there, consider this:
Already noting that articles like to sensationalize the story and try make it seem like the building will be chalk full of so many ranks and ranks of immaculately dressed butlers muttering “ji sahib ji” and scurrying hither tither about the gardens, serving Ambani like some kind of fief…
Please realize a the point that the majority of the 600 staff would be tending the equivalent of 50 stories of continuous vertical outdoor botanical gardens. And that through an entire season of torrential monsoon rains and winds. Not exactly a small feat… by any means.
Mark my words: While controversial now, this building will be an architectural bastion and a major tourist attraction for Mumbai when it is built, and I predict will become one of the most awed and loved of skyscrapers coming up.
While I may have as much reservations as the next guy, I think we should all give Ambani credit where it is due. And purely from an architectural perspective, I am friggin overjoyed (no joke) that this project has come to light.