Urban Heritage

Delhi has more layers of culture, civilization, history and built fabric extant in it than any other city in the world. It cradled and nurtured seven cities, and was built and rebuilt to meet the demands of different emperors and the people of each of those times.
It is the enthralling and enigmatic feature of this ancient modern city, that Delhi today, is a complex agglomeration of built fabric which exist as evidence in the form of layers of various historic time periods.


Lodi Garden These layers can be easily distinguished on the basis of their design, construction techniques, materials and architectural elements that add diversity to the basic typology. These range from domes, brackets, chhajjas, columns, plinths, finishes, etc.





Purana Quila However, the development scenario in the post-Independence period adversely affected the historical areas as well as several heritage sites. It also diluted the ambience of the city. Therefore, DDA, widened its role to not only meet the challenges of development, but to also preserve and protect the different facets of the city's personality.



India Gate Though the Archaeological Survey of India has been entrusted with the preservation and protection of known monuments, DDA, in
order to protect the Urban Heritage of Delhi, started a search for hitherto unknown areas of historical importance.




Then, in December 1993, DDA instituted the Urban Heritage Awards to encourage Delhites to appreciate, preserve, and take pride in the historically rich traditions and unique buildings of the city of Delhi. The awards recognize and honour individuals or institutions which have conserved old buildings of their time, thereby enhancing the beauty of the city. They are decided by a jury comprising of eminent citizens of Delhi, Administrators, Town Planners, and Conservationists.

DDA has so far awarded / commended 17 buildings which reflect their architectural images, social values, and traditions of their time, and are well maintained.

Urban Heritage

First Prize: 1993
Commendations: Balak Mata Centre St. Stephens' Church Old Delhi Railway Station L. N. Girdharilal School Metcalf House In 1862 Ghazi-ud-Din Khan founded a Madarsa near a Mosque just outside Shajahanabad's Ajmeri Darwaza. Unlike many others this Madarsa is distinctive in as much as it is separate and independent from the mausoleum. Called variously as Ghazi-ud-Din Madarsa, or Anglo-Arabic School, or Delhi College, or Zakir Hussain College, the building has been used both as a school and a college. This building was one of the centres of the "Delhi Renaissance" during the 1830's and 1840's. Many eminent Delhiwalas have been its alumni. Built in the Indo Sarasnic style, this complex is architecturally rich in design having all the desired elements and components of a Madarsa that is, Mosque, Makhtab, a library and a double-tier of Hujras for the students. This building is one of the few remaining specimens of the traditional Mughal School. It has been used in many different ways but the cardinal use has always been educational. Additions and alterations have been carried out adjacent to the historic building for fulfilling additional requirements in keeping with the English system of Higher Education. Periodical repairs have been carried out with taste and care. This building is a fine example of a religio-educational endowment. Architecturally well designed this building reflects the glory of an educational institution of eminence.


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