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Vernacular Architecture 
Of Kangra(HP) 
SUBMITTED BY-SAHIL 
KAUNDAL 
11613 
B.ARCH. 4th Year,7th Sem. 
1 
SUBMITTED TO-AR. 
VANDANA SHARMA
Vernacular architecture 
• Latin word Vernaculus means domestic, native, 
indigenous. 
• Vernacular architecture is a category of architecture 
based on localized needs and construction 
materials, and reflecting local traditions. 
2
Vernacular architecture is 
influenced by: 
• Localized needs 
• Local construction material 
• Local traditions 
• Hence, varies from area to area. 
• It is an epitome of place to which it belongs. Can 
not be imported from elsewhere. 
3
Factors influencing vernacular 
architecture 
4
Climate 
• Season wise 
• The material should remain hot in winter and cold in 
summer 
• Rainfall 
• Example: Slanting roof and construct dwelling on stilts 
in areas with high level of rainfall. 
• Winds 
• Orientation of buildings such that they have minimal 
area to the direction of prevailing winds. 
5
Culture 
• Size of family unit- Joint family or nuclear family? 
• How is food prepared and eaten? 
• How do people interact? 
• Local customs and beliefs. 
6
Materials 
• Availability of forests implies high preference to wood 
for construction purposes. And mud/stone otherwise. 
• Material used will depend upon the physical condition 
of that area. The area prone to earthquake would have 
different architecture than the one with floods. 
• Vernacular is sustainable and doesn’t exhaust local 
resources. Only those resources are used which are 
found in abundance and are non-exhaustive. 
7
Vernacular Architecture of 
Kangra(HP) 
8
Location of 
Kangra On Map 
9
Location 
• Kangra is located at 32.1°N 76.27°E. 
• It has an average elevation of 733 metres (2404 ft.) 
10 
Climate 
• Humid, sub-tropical zone. 
• Annual rainfall is between 900–2350mm. 
• Winter temp. ranges from 0 to 20 °C. 
• In Summers hot (ranges from 25 to 38 °C) and dry.
Economy 
• The Economy of Kangra District consists mostly of 
agriculture and farming. 
• Tea cultivation plays a vital in the economy. 
• Industries like water packaging, construction 
materials, and potato chips. 
11
TYPICAL HOUSE IN KANGRA - 1 
12 
Pitch Roof with Slate 
Covering 
Verandah 
Courtyard
TYPICAL HOUSE IN KANGRA - 2 
13
Building Materials 
14
Mud, Stone & Sun-Dried Bricks 
• Easy availability. 
• Good insulation. 
• Good binding properties. 
• Mud mortar is used as the joining material. Sun dried 
mud Bricks are used in the construction of the wall. 
• Hard Stone: Obtained from local quarries and used in 
building foundation and walls. 
• Slate Tiles: Metamorphic rock. Used in roofs of 
buildings. Has high quartz content, frost resistant, 
absorbs heat and provides moisture barrier. 
15
Sheesham & Bamboo Wood 
• Easily available, one of the strongest. 
• Imparts stability to tall structures. 
• This wood is insect and termite resistant and even 
when untreated, can withstand long periods of weather 
corrosion. 
• Used in making posts, beams, window and door 
frames, shutters, roofs etc.(Sheesham). 
• Soft wood, easy to work in absence of high tech tools. 
• Its properties were understood early and its texture 
and scent have been prized for ages. 
16
Traditional Builders 
• Traditional Artisans are employed. There 
knowledge is transferred orally from master artisan 
to apprentice. Mostly people procure materials 
from their surroundings and build houses with the 
help of relatives and neighbors. This has fostered 
an empirical knowledge of construction material, 
tools and technology and all of these are reflected 
in traditional building techniques. 
17
Planning Techniques 
• Factors that govern the planning are 
• climatic conditions, 
• cultural influences, 
• topography(heights), 
• More: orientation, traffic movement, available 
usable spaces, sources of water supply, natural 
drains and paths. 
18
Climate Influence 
• Due to the composite 
climate, The orientation of 
the houses should be such 
that, penetration of the sun 
rays max in winter & min. in 
summer. 
• The path of the sun, 
controls the height of 
building, as the sun is 
needed for each dwelling 
unit. 
19
• Small window size and low ceiling height to 
prevent heat loss and keep the interiors 
warmer. 
• Site susceptible to high winds, storms, floods 
and landslides should be avoided. 
• Roof in all around the building should have 
proper slope for efficient drainage, in heavy 
rain fall. 
20
Cultural influence 
• The house which constitutes many stores has been 
built for storage of grains which formed the back bone 
of the agrarian family. 
• Generally cow-shed and kitchen forms a separate unit. 
• The Indian calendar months of Baisakh, Poh, Magh and 
Phalgun are regarded as auspicious for the start of 
construction. 
• Ideally, the main aspect of the house should face east 
and the rising sun. 
• As a general rule the houses do not have a boundary 
wall. 
21
Topography 
• Area falls in the region of high to very high seismic 
hazard. 
• Unlike plains, here a new dimension or a height 
variation to the ground poses additional problem. 
22
Planning 
• Ground floor: Kitchen and Living area 
• First Floor: Generally Storage area. 
• Low Height of the rooms (2.1 – 2.5 m), keeps 
interiors warmer from heat released by individuals, 
also low surface to volume ratio reducing heat loss 
from surfaces. 
• Inner walls thickness is 6 inch and outer wall 
thickness is 12 inch(Adobe Bricks). 
23
Plan 
24 
Ground Floor Plan 
(Used as Living, 
Bedroom and Kitchen) 
First Floor Plan (Used as Storage Area)
Flooring 
• In the ground level mud 
& cow-dung were used 
for flooring above the 
plinth made of random 
rubble masonry. 
• The upper floors are 
made of timber planks 
and timber-joists and 
bamboo. 
25
Roofing 
• Pitched roof with locally available 
timber. Slate used for roof covering. 
Below the roof a ceiling is constructed 
with timber. This attic is used as a 
storage space. 
• The light-weight roof construction and 
the air between the roofing and attic-floor 
provided a very good thermal 
insulation against the passage of heat. 
• Low pitched roof provides a good 
solution to drain off the rain-water from 
the dwellings. 
26
Thank you! 
27

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Kangra Vernacular

  • 1. Vernacular Architecture Of Kangra(HP) SUBMITTED BY-SAHIL KAUNDAL 11613 B.ARCH. 4th Year,7th Sem. 1 SUBMITTED TO-AR. VANDANA SHARMA
  • 2. Vernacular architecture • Latin word Vernaculus means domestic, native, indigenous. • Vernacular architecture is a category of architecture based on localized needs and construction materials, and reflecting local traditions. 2
  • 3. Vernacular architecture is influenced by: • Localized needs • Local construction material • Local traditions • Hence, varies from area to area. • It is an epitome of place to which it belongs. Can not be imported from elsewhere. 3
  • 5. Climate • Season wise • The material should remain hot in winter and cold in summer • Rainfall • Example: Slanting roof and construct dwelling on stilts in areas with high level of rainfall. • Winds • Orientation of buildings such that they have minimal area to the direction of prevailing winds. 5
  • 6. Culture • Size of family unit- Joint family or nuclear family? • How is food prepared and eaten? • How do people interact? • Local customs and beliefs. 6
  • 7. Materials • Availability of forests implies high preference to wood for construction purposes. And mud/stone otherwise. • Material used will depend upon the physical condition of that area. The area prone to earthquake would have different architecture than the one with floods. • Vernacular is sustainable and doesn’t exhaust local resources. Only those resources are used which are found in abundance and are non-exhaustive. 7
  • 10. Location • Kangra is located at 32.1°N 76.27°E. • It has an average elevation of 733 metres (2404 ft.) 10 Climate • Humid, sub-tropical zone. • Annual rainfall is between 900–2350mm. • Winter temp. ranges from 0 to 20 °C. • In Summers hot (ranges from 25 to 38 °C) and dry.
  • 11. Economy • The Economy of Kangra District consists mostly of agriculture and farming. • Tea cultivation plays a vital in the economy. • Industries like water packaging, construction materials, and potato chips. 11
  • 12. TYPICAL HOUSE IN KANGRA - 1 12 Pitch Roof with Slate Covering Verandah Courtyard
  • 13. TYPICAL HOUSE IN KANGRA - 2 13
  • 15. Mud, Stone & Sun-Dried Bricks • Easy availability. • Good insulation. • Good binding properties. • Mud mortar is used as the joining material. Sun dried mud Bricks are used in the construction of the wall. • Hard Stone: Obtained from local quarries and used in building foundation and walls. • Slate Tiles: Metamorphic rock. Used in roofs of buildings. Has high quartz content, frost resistant, absorbs heat and provides moisture barrier. 15
  • 16. Sheesham & Bamboo Wood • Easily available, one of the strongest. • Imparts stability to tall structures. • This wood is insect and termite resistant and even when untreated, can withstand long periods of weather corrosion. • Used in making posts, beams, window and door frames, shutters, roofs etc.(Sheesham). • Soft wood, easy to work in absence of high tech tools. • Its properties were understood early and its texture and scent have been prized for ages. 16
  • 17. Traditional Builders • Traditional Artisans are employed. There knowledge is transferred orally from master artisan to apprentice. Mostly people procure materials from their surroundings and build houses with the help of relatives and neighbors. This has fostered an empirical knowledge of construction material, tools and technology and all of these are reflected in traditional building techniques. 17
  • 18. Planning Techniques • Factors that govern the planning are • climatic conditions, • cultural influences, • topography(heights), • More: orientation, traffic movement, available usable spaces, sources of water supply, natural drains and paths. 18
  • 19. Climate Influence • Due to the composite climate, The orientation of the houses should be such that, penetration of the sun rays max in winter & min. in summer. • The path of the sun, controls the height of building, as the sun is needed for each dwelling unit. 19
  • 20. • Small window size and low ceiling height to prevent heat loss and keep the interiors warmer. • Site susceptible to high winds, storms, floods and landslides should be avoided. • Roof in all around the building should have proper slope for efficient drainage, in heavy rain fall. 20
  • 21. Cultural influence • The house which constitutes many stores has been built for storage of grains which formed the back bone of the agrarian family. • Generally cow-shed and kitchen forms a separate unit. • The Indian calendar months of Baisakh, Poh, Magh and Phalgun are regarded as auspicious for the start of construction. • Ideally, the main aspect of the house should face east and the rising sun. • As a general rule the houses do not have a boundary wall. 21
  • 22. Topography • Area falls in the region of high to very high seismic hazard. • Unlike plains, here a new dimension or a height variation to the ground poses additional problem. 22
  • 23. Planning • Ground floor: Kitchen and Living area • First Floor: Generally Storage area. • Low Height of the rooms (2.1 – 2.5 m), keeps interiors warmer from heat released by individuals, also low surface to volume ratio reducing heat loss from surfaces. • Inner walls thickness is 6 inch and outer wall thickness is 12 inch(Adobe Bricks). 23
  • 24. Plan 24 Ground Floor Plan (Used as Living, Bedroom and Kitchen) First Floor Plan (Used as Storage Area)
  • 25. Flooring • In the ground level mud & cow-dung were used for flooring above the plinth made of random rubble masonry. • The upper floors are made of timber planks and timber-joists and bamboo. 25
  • 26. Roofing • Pitched roof with locally available timber. Slate used for roof covering. Below the roof a ceiling is constructed with timber. This attic is used as a storage space. • The light-weight roof construction and the air between the roofing and attic-floor provided a very good thermal insulation against the passage of heat. • Low pitched roof provides a good solution to drain off the rain-water from the dwellings. 26

Editor's Notes

  1. Architecture should be season WISE.
  2. Kitchen away and treated as temple and should not wear slipper while entering kitchen. A place away from house for guests. People have a common temple or temple in every house.
  3. Vernacular, almost by definition, is sustainable, and will not exhaust the local resources. If it is not sustainable, it is not suitable for its local context, and cannot be vernacular.
  4. A pitched roof is a roof for which one or more roof surfaces is pitched more than 10 degrees,[1] and alternately a roof with two slopes that meet at a central ridge.[