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Heart In Heritage - Metro Plus - The Hindu

April 26, 2009 at 6:30:00 PM

Benny Kuriakose talks to The Hindu about conservation architecture in India and the role of conservation in the present-day context. "Conservation architecture must be taken up with a sense of urgency,” Benny Kuriakose tells Divya Kumar. Kuriakose’s a laconic man, not generally into grand speeches, but his passion for the conservation of heritage buildings comes through clearly as we speak. Very few people were talking about conservation architecture even when Kuriakose returned from the U.K. in 1987; indeed, he was one of the first few Indians to specialise in the field.

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“Historic buildings give the city a unique character, an identity and once lost, they can’t be replaced,” stresses Kuriakose. Kuriakose incorporates all that he learned as a conservation consultant and designer into his newer buildings, whether it's integrating vernacular-style parapets, pillars, and thinnais or experimenting with traditional lighting and cooling methods. He concludes by saying, “We need to make a push to save them- write reports, utilize Government funds- and it’s best done as early as possible before any more of Chennai’s cultural heritage is lost.” For more information about this Conservation Architecture Specialist, visit our official website:

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