Devotion for space and proper use in architecture
Architect Zia turns 53 today
Published : Tuesday, 3 December, 2019 at 12:00 AM Count : 1094
Muzharul Islam, the pioneer of architecture in Bangladesh once said, "Architecture in Bangladesh would be based on light, air and water." Building on this fêted architect Ziaul Huq Chowdhury known as Zia has said that architecture of this riverine country has to have open space and considerations for the six seasons. In every one of his projects he tries to maintain the patterns of weather, climate and nature of this country. Zia says, "The movement of adequate light and air is a prerequisite for any good architecture. Keeping this in mind I also ensure in my designs that no matter wherever one is standing he/she can get the feeling of outdoors." The practical approach to architecture is also very important for him. For whatever purpose a particular piece of architecture maybe designed for a person, he or she should be able to use that purpose to its fullest, Zia thinks. "Thus I try to avoid complexity and it is simplicity and solidness that appeal to me."
Zia has some acute observations about the current architecture scene of Bangladesh. According to him, the practice of modern architecture here emerged through the masterwork of Louis I Kahn and with the endeavours of the ground-breaking Bangladeshi architect, Muzharul Islam, and obviously has seen the limelight after the independence in 1971. Till the early 90s, experimentations were sorted both in positive and negative senses and finally it seems that the local architects are on a track befitting time and context since they are producing commendable works suitable for the global context. Further, the clientele has also become more discerning and impacting the architecture practice. Thus its outcomes have become a matter of pride among the neighboring nations. Now it is the time to make architecture more engaging for the people and their lives and adaptive to the evolving culture, climate and settings.
Zia gets excited when he visits a site where a new building is due to be established or constructed. He said, "Another worldly thing happens when I pace backward and forward around it. The site talks to me - it tells me about its history, the context, the landscape, setting, the climate, every single aspect that affects the place. I find myself listening to the site and getting engrossed about learning from it; then I fall in love with it and that is how the project kicks off."
Zia's works bear the approach of modem architecture. He does not like decoration in his work. Lucidity and plentiful light, both are significant features in his architectures. The distinctness of his work is easily noticeable.
At present Zia is the managing director at Architects Limited. He has designed many buildings in different categories like corporate offices, industrial buildings, residential apartments, hospitals and more. His refreshing approach towards architecture is really praiseworthy. His constructions are distinguished for their modem style and experimental approach. The recurrent aspect of his architectural work is plain view and easy accessibility of air and light.
Projects finished by him include Rupganj Tati Bazar of Narayanganj, Bangaldesh Sangbad Sangstha office of Paltan, TMR Knit Fabrics Factory of Rupganj, Rupa Composite Knit Dying Factory of Tongi, South Land Center Shopping Complex of Agrabad in Chattogram, Prime View of Gulshan, PBL Tower Building, Basundhara Group's Office, Chairman Bari of Bakerganj in Barisal, Atahar Uddin Hawlader College, South Pride Apartment of Dhanmondi, Navana Homes of Banani, Chhaya Pallab Apartment in Pallabi, Babylon Group's showroom at Shimanto Square of Zigatola, Rapper Fast Food of Uttara, Sultana Dream, Garib-E- Newaz Villa, Factory of Rupa Knitwear Private Ltd, Atahar Uddin Hospital of Bakerganj, Mayakunja Apartment of Pallabi, Amera Corner Apartment of Uttara, DFO Resident for Bangladesh Forest Department Financed by World Bank, Staff dormitory for Bangladesh Forest Department Financed by World Bank, SEBA Tower at Motijheel, Vacation Home at Bashundhara, CRP-Khulna Akij Center at Khulna for Center for the Rehabilitation of the Paralysed (CRP) and more.
Zia is a humourist, secular, liberal and soft-spoken by nature. He has a great passion for literature especially novel and poetry. He is a socially and politically conscious person as he was involved with a left- leaning party in his student life.
Zia has attended many seminars, conferences and discussions in our country and abroad. He has also served as consultant and advisor to a number of Bangladesh Government Organisations, Private and Semi-Government Organisations.
Being fourth in a line of six siblings, Zia was born and brought up at Chandraghona in Chattogram. But his ancestral home is in Cumilla. His father, Shamsul Haque Chowdhury was an officer at the Chandraghona Paper Mills. His mother Chemon Ara Begum is a housewife. Since his very childhood he was engaged with cultural activities. He was a member of children's organisation Khelaghar. In his school days he was greatly involved in different sports activities.
Zia matriculated from Karnaphuli Paper Mills High School in 1982 and completed his intermediate studies from Chattogram College in 1984. He got his Bachelor of Architecture from BUET in 1993.
Ziaul Huq Chowdhury and his physician wife Professor Salma Sultana (General Surgery, Piles and Breast Operation Specialist, Consultant at Dhaka Medical College and Hospital) are blessed with one son and one daughter.