Heavy rainfall has drowned Mumbai not just once but several times. In fact, the maximum city has experienced monstrous floods twice already in the current decade, in 2011 and 2017. Being a coastal city, heavy rainfall is a given in Mumbai. This agony has given a push to a new project named concrete void initiated by the firm sP+a who has deliberately decided to construct a next-level factory in Bhiwandi, Maharashtra, India with a built area of 2,000 sq.m or 21,528 sq.ft which has a sunken void that allows monsoon water to safely flow into the site. Indian architecture firm sP+a has completed a concrete factory building on the outskirts of Mumbai. On the north-west corner of the plot, the design created is such that there is an opening in the concrete facade, which not only provides views inside the structure, but also contains a sunken void. The sole reason behind this anti flood void is to utilise the rainwater in a proper manner and at the same time put a barrier to the floods in the near future.
Located on a part of the site prone to seasonal flooding, this void allows monsoon waters to flood in and out of the site without disrupting the building or its workers. When it is not filled with water, the space is utilised as a shaded breakout space for employees. To traverse this chasm, a bridge connects the street to the building. A courtyard is positioned at the centre of the site, with the factory’s production floors organized around it accordingly. The building itself contains a variety of spaces that range from production and dining areas to shipping docks and much more. The corner void connecting to the central void courtyard creates an extroverted factory type, visually linking to the access road beyond the site as well as offering relief from the impenetrable adjoining building masses. Meanwhile, relatively thin floor plates ensure well-lit work spaces. Externally, the heavy concrete appearance of the building exists in sharp contrast to the lightweight but opaque steel sheathing of the surrounding buildings.
The structure is such that it take cares of the necessities of the employees and the employers parallel to managing the seasonal water flooding. Conservation of water during the monsoon and utilising it round the year is one of the major agenda of this project which would be ready by the end of 2018.