Christopher Benninger: Architecture for Modern India
Rosa Maria Falvo and Ramprasad Akkisetti
American born and raised, Christopher Benninger is one of India’s most highly decorated architects. His career spans four decades in prominent roles: as an institution builder, professor, United Nations and World Bank consultant advising many governments, pioneering expert in social planning and low cost housing for the less privileged in Jamnagar, Chennai, Hyderabad, and several other cities, and master architect, designing many modern institutions nurturing development in India. His award winning projects include the Mahindra United World College of India, Samundra Institute of Maritime Studies, YMCA Camp Site at Nilshi, Suzlon One Earth, and his own studio residence “India House” in Pune. Graduating in architecture from Harvard University where he later taught, Benninger completed further studies in urban planning at MIT and settled in India in 1971, founding the School of Planning in Ahmedabad where he remains an active distinguished professor. His name appears alongside Geoffrey Bawa, Charles Correa, and Balkrishna Doshi as one of the few recipients of the Great Master Architect Award in India presented every three years.