location: Stafford, TX
area: 15,905 SF
status: In Progress
The Mahatma Gandhi Museum, an institution aimed at increasing public awareness of Gandhian philosophy and teachings, consists of a series of linear galleries staggered along a long and narrow site.The museum buildings stretch along an elevated walkway interwoven with green spaces. Visitors meander through the museum, circulating between galleries and verandas. The breezy water gardens serve as breaks between exhibitions, where one can rest, reflect, and reconnect with the wetland ecology that was once prevalent on the site.
The museum employs the vernacular “dogtrot” typology as a key design and sustainability strategy. The breezeways catch prevailing winds to cool outdoor spaces and ventilate the galleries. The shed roofs collect rainwater into retention ponds, for reuse in the building and for irrigation. The interconnected ponds employ gravity filtration to reduce pollution in the water before gradually releasing it into the municipal storm water system. The east and west sun exposures are minimized and southern exposures are protected by louvers to reduce heat gain. Photovoltaic panels are placed on the south-facing roofs to maximize solar energy collection. The Mahatma Gandhi Museum uses vernacular sustainable architecture to engage the community and to promote Gandhi’s simple way of life.