An interview with Krys Tomaryk on Well Landscaped Community Terraces

Krys Tomaryk is one of the few international landscape architects I have interviewed who believes that profanity lies in keeping things simple and basic. He has been associated with dozens of landscape projects across the world and in some years, his work will be seen in two upcoming projects across Kolkata, under the banner of Sugam Homes. Here are some snippets of the interview, which was more like an introspective.

What made you choose interior designing/landscaping as a career?

Krys: Well, this is interesting. When I was about 8 years old, my mom gave me £8 to decorate my room. It was an all white room with nothing in it. What I did was bringing in a lot of colors and put a couple of furniture and still saved some money. I lived in that room till I was 18 and ready to move out to pursue my career ahead. The idea of designing struck to me early on and I am glad to have contributed in any way to the lives of many people today.

High rises have become the popular means of living for residents in big cities. Are community terraces the last option?

Krys: Landscape integration is the objective here. Terraces are the first step in communities living in and with nature.

What comprises community terrace designing?

Krys: That would be hard to be put but integrating the landscape and natural environment of terrace areas with community areas is the target.

Are there any green opportunities with luxury community terraces? How are they important?

Krys: it is not only about ‘green’/ it is about space relationships with nature – some of these are not green but environmental. This includes rocks, lakes, windy, and similar elements.

What is the demand/opportunity for landscape designing worldwide?

Krys: Landscape designing is pushed by developers who respond responsibly to human habitat needs. It is for the overall well being of the mind, body and soul relationships of the living.

Is there a social perspective revolving around the idea of community terraces or does it come as a complimentary advantage? In context to Sugam Sudhir, what was your thought process and challenge?

Krys: The social perspective comes from the responsible developer as expert landscape and environment designer it welcomes and pursues. With Sugam Sudhir, our aim was to offer residents a way out of the dense and noisy urban environment. We are creating a space for repose that balances a harmony with nature.

Do community terraces just fit luxury projects or can they be integrated into budget residential/commercial apartments too?

Krys: For healthy communities, it is imperative that this concern is a major consideration of the built environment, weather luxury or budget. The elements we prioritize obviously differ but the concept and aim is still the same.

What are the challenges of community terrace designing?

Krys: For budget homes, the aim is to achieve value and improvement. With luxury projects, the idea is to achieve and environment for healthy living and minimize the destruction of natural scape.

What is your approach to community terrace landscaping?

Krys: Again, as said earlier, I have always tried to prioritize the environment and its relevance and relationship with living premises. Depending on the opportunities available, I intend to make the most of the setting, while creating comfort zones that suit workplaces, social life and personal/private spaces.

What elements would describe your dream project?

Excessiveness of any sort has always been frowned upon. While we don’t need to have too much of natural scape or concrete premises, the idea is to create a balanced environment. The aim is to design something that we would feel comfortable in.