Not a long drive away from Mumbai, a mountainous landscape rises up, called the Western Ghats. From this UNESCO world heritage area, numerous rivers and streams find their way down through an undulating landscape eventually feeding into the Bombay bay. The Riparian House is placed below the crest of a hillock at the foothills of the Ghats near Mumbai. The top of a vegetated roof merges with the top of the hillock, hiding the house while approaching. The house almost becomes a cyborg: part natural, part artificial.
A box like volume is inserted under this roof to merge with the terrain. The roof allows wild grass and vegetation to grow over it. From above, the strong geometry of the house seems to merge with the contours of the hill. It forms a hybrid of a half made, half found landscape. The house emerges from walls that are imagined as “incisions” in the landscape. They allow the interior spaces to relate to the landscape at various levels. The experience of being inside the earth is enhanced through the stone boulders which were discovered during the excavation process and retain the earth. This rock carved courtyard becomes the staircase. It cuts through the roof and travels through the interior of the house, extending onto the landscape. It creates another movement between architecture and the terrain.