CLIENT: SURAT MUNICIPAL CORPORATION
Project showcases the castle as a living exhibit of historical layers of its occupation, and prevalent construction practices in Tughlaq, Mughal, Dutch, and British Surat. This is an example of structural conservation, reconstruction, and adaptive re-use.
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The restoration project of Surat Castle treats the architecture to be an archive and hence envisages it as an exhibit of its own history evident in its construction layers. The restoration project of Surat Castle combines structural conservation, material conservation, artistic interpretation, adaptive reuse, and recreation of history—to offer an immersive experience to its users. In this manner the project has deliberately been an informed inquiry to develop a design-based approach to the practice of conservation. In this design-based approach, care has been taken to investigate history through material evidences, consolidate and strengthen those evidences on-site as repair strategies, and keep them revealed so as to facilitate and make normal a reading of history through the structure itself. This is one of the first attempts in conservation practice where emphasis has been laid on promoting architectural formalist history as an active means of educating people.