Huanyu Chen

Huanyu Chen

New York, NY, US


Varanasi in Flux

Due to Varanasi’s religious importance and the number of festivals that occur in different seasons, the population fluctuates throughout the year from 1.2 million to 6 million. 1 This flux in the number of people consists of pilgrims, tourists and nomadic groups. Nomads and workers from surrounding towns also come to Varanasi in order to sell their goods for rituals, and use Varanasi as a ground for living and production. The flux and flow through Varanasi is not limited to people, but also to the annual rainfall which changes the landscape, the celebration of festivals, migratory birds that come from Siberia from November to March, and seasonal flowers that are used in festivals.

The Varanasi Development Authority has prepared a 2031 Master Plan that is meant to expand the city to accommodate the growing population. Our project challenges the 2031 Master Plan by looking at Varanasi as a pulsing city rather than static and linear growth entity, where public spaces should be flexible, adaptable and resilient to accommodate the intensifying seasonal flux of people, flora and fauna.

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Status: School Project