HISTORY

After the partition of British India into India and Pakistan in 1947, the former British province of Punjab was also split between India and Pakistan. The Indian state of Punjab required a new capital city to replace Lahore, which became part of Pakistan during the partition. After several plans to make additions to existing cities were found to be unfeasible for various reasons like shortage of water, defence vulnerability or inaccessibility, the decision to construct a new and planned city was undertaken. Of all the new town schemes in independent India, the Chandigarh project quickly assumed prime significance, because of the city's strategic location as well as the personal interest of Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of independent India. Commissioned by Nehru to reflect the new nation's modern, progressive outlook, Chandigarh was designed by the French (born Swiss) architect and urban planner, Le Corbusier, in the 1950s. Le Corbusier was in fact the second architect of the city, after the initial master plan was prepared by the American architect-planner Albert Mayer who was working with the Polishborn architect Matthew Nowicki.

an anthropomorphic plan form.On 1 November 1966. Taking over from Albert Mayer. However. and a hierarchy of road and pedestrian networks. in order to create Haryana as a majority Hindi-speaking state (with a Hindu majority). Le Corbusier produced a plan for Chandigarh that conformed to the modern city planning principles of Congrès International d'Architecture Moderne CIAM. while the western portion of Punjab retained a mostly Punjabi language-speaking majority (with a Sikh majority) and remained as the current day federated state of Punjab. the city of Chandigarh was on the border. contained in the innumerable conceptual maps on the drawing board together with notes and sketches had to be translated into brick and mortar. This vision of Chandigarh. Albert Mayer’s plan . the newly-formed Indian state of Haryana was carved out of the eastern portion of the Punjab. in terms of division of urban functions. and was thus created into a union territory to serve as capital of both these states.

This became the architectural form characteristic of Chandigarh. and the buildings were characterized by an "honesty of materials". the curving outline of Mayer and Nowicki was reorganized into a mesh of rectangles. . Exposed brick and boulder stone masonry in its rough form produced unfinished concrete surfaces. in geometrical structures.However. set amidst landscaped gardens and parks.

like the basic framework of the master plan and its components: The Capitol. and linear parkland.Le Corbusier retained many of the seminal ideas of Mayer and Nowicki. . Industrial area. City Center. Even the neighbourhood unit was retained as the basic module of planning. besides the University.