On August 25, 2021, IIT Bombay signed an innovative partnership agreement with its alumni organizations - IITB Alumni Association (IITBAA) and IITB Heritage Foundation (IITBHF). Under this partnership agreement, the alumni organizations will take responsibility for all fund raising, design, construction, and project management for a new 1,000–1,200 room hostel complex. This is the first of many hostels to come which will be completely funded and built by the Alumni. This initiative by the Alumni to support IIT Bombay in catering to its student housing needs, is named Project Evergreen.
The alumni of IIT Bombay aspire to raise Rs.135–150 crore, (USD 20 mn) for this ambitious and much needed hostel complex. The manner in which Project Evergreen has been conceptualised represents a paradigm shift in terms of how the institute will evolve in the years to come - a far closer interaction between alumni, current students, and institute authorities. A new ecosystem that will propel IIT Bombay into an orbit, that would be solely its own. This project thus sets a template for the complete rejuvenation of the student housing facilities on the campus.
Project Evergreen is the largest alumni project ever!
The name Evergreen stands for the timelessness of our association with IIT Bombay. It evokes vivid images of our own time in the sylvan surrounds of the institute. Project Evergreen also epitomizes the commitment of alumni to future generations by building a hostel complex that’s world-class and in line with the needs of modern times.
We believe this unique initiative will strike a special chord with all our alumni for whom the time spent in the hostel, was as much a part of the association with the institute, as that spent in the classrooms, if not more! It will also resonate with those who champion women empowerment. We are sure Project Evergreen will galvanize alumni across generations as we strive to meet our lofty goal.
The close partnership of the alumni, institute and the students in the development of the new Hostel also marks a significant deviation from the existing model. The project would indeed be a pioneering effort which would pave the path for reimagining the entire student residence space on campus. So in a way, this the beginning of a journey, for which, we are reaching out to the entire alumni community for their help and support.
The conceptualization of Project Evergreen represents a paradigm shift in the model of development of infrastructure on campus. The seeds of this model were sown with the H5 Enhancement Project a year prior. Under the stewardship of Mr. Dhananjay Saheba (Class of ’77, H5), this project aimed to improve living conditions in the current Hostel 5 by refurbishing some amenities and adding others, and raising funds for the same from alumni donations. In Mr. Saheba’s words, this was the first instance of “a project of alumni, by alumni, for future alumni (i.e., current students) of hostel 5.” Funded and successfully implemented by alumni, this project is now in its final stage
After a process of trimming down the potential list of 15 architects by the Project Planning Committee (PPC), a jury comprising of external architects’ /sustainability experts and members from the Project planning committee reviewed the presentations and the conceptual designs submitted based on the pre- design survey that was conducted and unanimously chose one: Design Cooperative (DCOOP) lead by Architects Qaid Doongerwala and Shilpa Ranade. (You can google them on https://www.dcoop.in/)
The Steering committee headed by the Director then met to approve the
design and the Architect -DCOOP on 20th October 2021.
The design takes inspiration from the invaluable natural habitat and unique social life of IIT Bombay. It intends to strengthen it by creating a large, cloistered courtyard between the cluster of three hostels, which doesn’t just give them unique identities, but also retains the dense tree coverage of the site and creates a special social space for student interaction. Common amenities such as the dining, study, foyers, recreational areas, and the cafe are distributed at two lower levels in clearings made by retaining most of the large trees on the site. The hostel blocks rise above this podium along the periphery of the site. The two boys’ hostels are at northern and western edge of the site and girls’ hostel is at the eastern edge adjacent to H11. Each hostel block has a distinct form that gives it a unique identity and strengthens a sense of belonging amongst students. The cafe sits at the corner that faces the main road and acts as a connector between hostels and larger IIT community.
Memories and bonds created in hostels are cherished forever by students. The project creates a healthy and thriving social network through multiple scales of social spaces. On each hostel floor, break out spaces are staggered across clusters of three to four rooms on different floors, thereby also allowing for better light and ventilation. More formal interaction spaces at lower levels bring together larger groups of people. The cloistered courtyard is the largest and most flexible social space in the cluster and can be used by smaller groups to hangout under trees or play games. At other times, it can be used by much larger groups for events and performances.
Here’s an opportunity to create your legacy. We could name a room in either of the new Hostels after you, maybe your old moniker/ You could pick the chess championship or the inter wing Basky or maybe even a gaali competition, name it after old times. We would like some of you to come fund key spaces like wing Addas, the lounges, the study rooms and more. There are 76 trees in the complex that need protecting - you could pick one, a dozen or the entire set ! Do look through the table below - we are also happy to customize a naming right, as long as you make it worth the while!