Dena Bank, Ahmedabad 1974 -1976
Dena Bank represents an end point; it is amongst the last of the noteworthy public sector institutional commissions of its era in Ahmedabad. Typically for Hasmukh Patel, his professional responsibility to his client was at the centre of his endeavour and of his recollections of the project. He credits the Dena Bank commission to his earlier bank projects, through which he had built a reputation for designing quality buildings that functioned well and were delivered on time and within budget. Like Newman Hall, the Dena Bank uses narrowly spaced, repetitive structural elements from which the building derives much of its impact. Inside, these are fine and beautifully finished. Externally, they are robustly proportioned. The side facade was perhaps the most iconic element of the building. Standing beside this side elevation the building appears to soar above its actual height. Dena Bank shares the use of raw concrete and certain formal characteristics with many brutalist buildings. However, it is articulated, detailed and constructed with a care and delicacy which is alien to the ideals of the movement. This synthesis of disparate modern ideas makes Dena Bank powerful and memorable.As Ahmedabad approaches another wave of development along the riverfront, the questions Patel asked—while he designed Dena Bank—about the role of big buildings in the city, again become pertinent.
Built-up Area: 6,800 Sq.m.
Client: Dena Bank