Council on Energy, Environment and Water Integrated | International | Independent

A Glimpse at our New Home

The Council began its journey from a small one-room office in Gurgaon in 2010. After spending almost seven years in the lanes of Central Delhi at Thapar House on Janpath, we moved to our new home at Sanskrit Bhawan in the Qutab Institutional Area on 30 April.

Abundant natural light, pouring in from our large windows, illuminates the office during the day.

Six months in the making, our new office has been designed to embody our vision and our three values – Integrated, International, Independent. It is home to several little and big steps we have taken to walk the sustainability path.

Plants line windows in the centre of the office, overlooking the atrium at Sanskrit Bhawan.

Our work areas are designed to make the best use of space, while allowing for abundant natural light. In the common areas, furniture and book racks are all made of bamboo, as are ceiling frames and light shades in the cabins and the conference room. Walls are dotted with handmade earthen planters fired in CEEW colours to hold indoor plants. The pin-up boards use block-printed cotton and natural fabrics. We have also designed cane-backed white boards. In Sagarmāthā, our conference room, a cane wall paneling reduces the amount of cement needed while giving an aesthetically earthen look. We are especially proud of our handmade blinds, made from banana fibre and recycled newspapers. Look up, and you see recycled plastic ropes covering exposed pipes.

Our meeting rooms and common areas are named after the tallest peaks of each continent.

Handmade blinds, made from banana fibre and recycled newspapers, line the windows.

Our main work space has suspended plants that improve indoor air quality. We take care of their nutrition through a timed drip irrigation system and a coco peat base. Other features like controlled water-use faucets, sensor-backed lights, and a floor made of kota stones are choices we have made to embed sustainability into smart. And at the end of the day, we continue our practice of waste management, and (thanks to the building management) have a car park covered with solar panels.

Elbrus, the CEEW library, has been designed to give team members a working-cum-reading space. Books, plants, and ideas abound at this summit.

Handmade ceramic lamps illuminate the workstations.

We celebrated moving into our new home with an intimate gathering of our Trustees and close associates. The celebration included a walk-through of the new office space, and a warm discussion with our Trustees on the past, present, and future of The Council – what drives us and guides us.

The highlight of the evening (apart from the cake!) was a session that saw The Council’s team present readings, skits, and films; from the poignant to the cheeky. A recital from Ghalib gave way to an excerpt from the film Udaan, and the session ended with a video about The Council’s ‘band of researchers.’

Our trustees get a tour of the new office

CEEW staff and Trustees reflect on the journey to our own space.