Kashmir’s Architecture School gets own campus after 2 years in Ganderbal

Srinagar: Bringing relief to hundreds of aspiring architects, the government has finally allotted 100 kanals of land for setting up a permanent campus for Kashmir’s only School of Architecture (SOA).
The SOA, which was established by the Higher Education Department (HED) in September 2017 was without a permanent campus of its own and had been running from the lone building at Abdul Ahad Azad Memorial Degree College, Bemina.
The institute offers a 5-year Bachelor’s programme in Architecture (B Arch). It is affiliated to the University of Kashmir and is registered with the Council of Architecture (CoA).
In an order issued by Secretary Higher Education Department, Talat Parvez Rohella last month, the department has given sanction to construction of SOA on 100 kanals of land at Safapora in central Kashmir’s Ganderbal district.
The order said that the land had been transferred to the institution by Divisional Commissioner Kashmir.
Till the institution gets its own building, the SOA Srinagar has been shifted to Government College of Engineering and Technology, Safapora where Principal of the college has been assigned its charge for now.
Likewise, the charge of SOA Jammu has been assigned to Principal GCET, Chak Balwal where the Architecture School has been shifted for now and has also been allotted 50 kanals of land for building its own campus there.
Divisional Administration Kashmir in May last year taken cognizance of an exclusive Kashmir Reader report on the acute dearth of faculty and other physical infrastructure at the valley’s only School of Architecture.
Students enrolled at the institution had been complaining about an acute space crunch and dearth of specialist teaching faculty.
The SOA Bemina was established by the state government amid a rising demand for the Bachelor’s course in Architecture for which the aspirants had to move outside the Valley. Admissions to the course are made on the basis of the ‘National Aptitude Test for Architecture (NATA) as per the Council of Architecture (CoA) guidelines.

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