India has a large population of visually challenged people yet a lack of facilities leaves them with no safe spaces in our society. Noticing this lack of consideration IMK architects put themselves in the shoes of visually impaired children and came up with Worli’s Happy Home and School For The Blind an exceptional place to nurture.
Designed by renowned architect I.M Kadri in 1971, Happy Home and School For The Blind is a special place for more than 200 boys from all casts and creeds which helps them connect with the world around them. To keep his legacy alive Rahul Kadri - the architect’s son - refurbished an exceptional space for the children in the the form of the tactile garden.
Taking into account four of the five senses, the tactile garden also known as ‘Ray Of Hope’ is a space of sensory, educational and recreational experiences for the boys. Once a dark patch of rubble, this refurbished backyard now serves as both a play area as well as an open-air classroom. Created in EPDM (ethylene propylene diene monomer rubber) material especially for children who are partially or completely blind, this garden uses various textures to help the children distinguish one area from another.
Well equipped with merry-go-rounds, swings, see-saw and slides the play area also doubles up as an unconventional classroom for the children by feeling the textures and sounds of the surface beneath their feet. While the school did have a smaller tactile garden in the past it was noisy and polluted, ‘Ray Of Light’ is a much for sensitive space for the children that keeps their mobility and security in mind.
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