Crowning Glory: Design element on city skyscrapers to add a glamor quotient to the skyline | Kolkata News

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Kolkata: The city’s skyline will become more glamorous in the years to come as builders crown their developments. A commercial building on the EM Bypass is to have the highest crown in the city at 20 m. Another 30-story mixed-use building being developed in New Town’s fintech hub will feature a tower.
As a purely aesthetic element, the concrete and steel crown at the Ideal Unique Center near Science City will resemble a real crown, measuring 36.3m at the base and 45.7m at the top. “The crown will make the building an architectural landmark and enrich the city’s skyline,” said Nakul Himatsingka, director of Ideal Group. KMC’s building department recently approved the increase in building height from the 28th to the 31st floor.
New Town’s Vertical City, which is slated to begin construction later this year, will have a spiraling crown at the top and an observation deck just below. “The 100-foot crown that will adorn the building will celebrate verticality and soar skyward,” said architect Dikshu Kukreja.
Several other buildings in the city also feature the design element, including various Mani Group projects such as Tirumani at Ballygunge Phanri and Vivara alongside JW Marriott on the EM Bypass, as well as Ideal Group’s Ideal Heights project in Sealdah, also designed by Hafeez Contractor was , the same architect who designed the elevation for Ideal Unique Centre.
The developers of The 42 atop Chowringhee, the city’s tallest skyscraper, had also been aiming for a crown, but the aeronautical nod proved a hurdle.
Pushyamitra Londhe, deputy architect at Hafeez Contractor, said the crown is a decorative element designed to ensure a tall building does not come to an abrupt end. “A crown adds to the beauty of the building,” he said. The Imperial Towers building in Mumbai, also designed by Hafeez Contractor, also wears a crown.
Mani Group chief executive Sanjay Jhunjhunwala said the crown on a building serves to break the monotony of a monolithic concrete structure that prevents the viewer’s gaze from traversing the sky. “When people look up at tall buildings, a crown stops the movement up and then you look down at the building again,” he said.
Architect Abin Chaudhuri felt that the crown on a building also indulged the architect and developer’s ego by pushing the height barrier upwards. “These are non-functional high-rise elements that can be a prominent feature. Towers are added to skyscrapers to make them the tallest buildings. In others, an observation deck will be added for panoramic city views,” he said.
For architect JP Agarwal, the crowns also add character to the city’s skyline, like in New York. “The concept began more than 90 years ago with the Chrysler Building and the Empire State Building in Manhattan, New York. Now it’s popular all over the world,” he said.
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