21st century city designers are rediscovering ancient traditions in India

Dholavira, a 4,670-year-old city with perpendicular streets, planned urban spaces, groundwater and wastewater management has been recognized as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO In 2021. Hundreds of these planned cities are spread across the Indian subcontinent.

India’s ancient urban heritage, which has developed over centuries, offers many lessons in the era of deteriorating climate change. The notion of “vernacular urbanism” – i.e. cities and settlements that respond to local weather and climate patterns – is recognized by academics and the construction industry. The ancient cities of India have a lot to offer for urban development in the twenty-first century.

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