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Landscape architects in Chennai

Landscape architecture is a blend of outdoor areas and man-made structures to attain aesthetic outcomes. The skill of the architect helps blend the man-made structures with the natural landscape to create the perfect harmonious landscape architecture. Landscape architecture combines the art of composing water, vegetation, buildings, landforms, and more, to create smart outdoor spaces.  Landscape architecture is essential to residential site design, monuments, streetscapes, public spaces, institutional and academic campuses, resorts, and commercial buildings.

What does a landscape architect in Chennai do?

Landscape architects in Chennai, belong to the Indian Association of Landscape Architects (ISOLA). The landscape architects are qualified professionals, holding at least a bachelor’s degree in architecture and are permitted by legal frameworks to develop comprehensive structural plans, taking into consideration all big and small details of the site.

Chennai is home to many good architectural colleges. There are around 85+ colleges imparting architectural education in the state, which implies around 5000 fresh architects per year are available in the market. Many non-architectural candidates practice in the city; hence it is critical to know the professional and their qualifications before hiring.

What are a few critical aspects of architecting landscapes?

Site analysis: Site analysis is the most basic groundwork, critical to creating an overall landscape style. Analyzing the site helps in understanding the unique aspects (and in some cases challenges) associated with the property. Landscaping starts with the basic analysis of the dimensions and the form of the property, an ardent architect understands the distinctive features associated with the site, in the process.

Soil analysis: The soil type is analyzed to make it easier for plants to flourish. An analysis of the wind and its directions could help place trees and plants strategically, rendering a cooling effect naturally, a must in hot Chennai weather.

Climate/environment: Chennai has a unique climate, and quite often hit by heavy rains and cyclones. Landscapes need to be designed while keeping in mind the climatic conditions and harsh weather spikes. Placing the plants and trees correctly could help the residents cope with the hot summers, which are typical of Chennai, by balancing the ambient temperature, noises, wind, and light levels.

Design: Great landscape architecture manages the plants and the hardscapes ratio. Harmonious coexistence of various elements is critical and needs to be achieved with meticulous planning and implementation.

Functionality:  Each landscape is designed to suit a different purpose. An experienced architect understands the functionality and desired use of the space before architecting. The landscape for a residential community in Chennai, as an example, should have a play space for the kids, an outdoor entertainment area, water bodies like the swimming pool, walkways, and more.

Implementation: Attention to details, specifications, procurement, and the use of proven landscape construction techniques, are the key to a successful implementation, and for bringing ideas to life.

What comprises of great landscape architecture?

A professional landscape architecture comprises of two main types i.e. hardscaping and softscaping.

Hardscaping- Hardscaping refers to the design, planning, and implementation of non-living matter in the beautification of land. Hardscaping includes elements like paths, gazebos, patios, decks, and more. Depending on what needs to be constructed, the work typically involves materials like stone, concrete, wood, metal and more.

Softscaping- The softscaping encompasses the animate (living), horticultural elements of landscape design, like the plants, trees, shrubs, and flowerbeds. Softscape refers to everything that’s not hardscape, including the soil, color schemes, and more.

A great landscape comprises of a good mix of elements from both categories. A landscape architect can vary the proportion of elements based on design and functionality. Hardscaping elements typically cost more to start with but are low on maintenance in the long run. Once installed, the elements remain almost the same for elongated periods and redesigning or replacing them could cost a lot. On the contrary, the softscaping elements are more affordable, and can be replaced easily, but requires a lot more ongoing care and maintenance.

What are the charges of a landscape architect in Chennai?

Landscaping costs vary depending on the size of the job and how many landscapers it requires. The cost also depends on how many elements need to be added. Prices depend on the size of your area, where you are located in Chennai and the complexity of the job at hand. Labour and the architect's fee are the biggest expense, costing around 80% of your total cost. Globally people spend 10% of the overall value of the house for landscaping, so in Chennai, a home valued at Rs. 1 crore should invest around 10 lakh Rs. in landscaping. In Chennai, most landscape architects charge a per square foot fee, ranging from Rs. 500 to 800 on an average. A few professional landscape architects in Chennai charge a flat fee for their work, starting from Rs. 1 lakh, going up to as high as Rs. 10 lakh per unit. Discuss the fee and services with your architect at length, before finalizing.

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