The SacredGroves Project

There is an acute shortage of affordable housing in Auroville which deters many good people from joining the community. The SacredGroves project was conceived to alleviate this problem with the construction of 108 new homes for newcomers, Aurovilians and long-term volunteers, in a manner consistent with the Mother’s vision for Auroville.

The project is designed to be a model of ecological community living using ecologically sensitive construction methods. We hope this model can be replicated in high density urban areas in India and elsewhere.

Ecological community living

Many of the problems of earth, soul and society are caused by the high-earning, high-pressure, high-carbon individualistic urban lifestyle that so many people lead. Instead, we offer the opportunity for a simpler, more self-sufficient yet inter-dependant and ecological way of living that allows more time for family, community and the nourishment of the soul.

We aim to achieve this by providing low-cost, low-maintenance, off-grid ecological housing incorporating the following elements –

•    Energy self-sufficiency using solar, wind, pumped storage and bio-mass systems.
•    Water self-sufficiency from rainwater and grey-water harvesting.
•    Some food self-sufficiency from the provision of organic vegetable gardens for each house.
•    Preservation of forest areas – the sacred groves.
•    Thick walls and passive cooling system negate the need for AC and even fans.
•    Composting toilets.
•    Shared spaces and utilities to encourage community activities and interdependence.

Ecological construction

The construction industry in India is responsible for huge ecological problems. Illegal mining and quarrying are destroying vast areas of forests and hills. The indiscriminate dumping of construction and demolition (C&D) waste into wetland areas surrounding our cities results in the drying up of essential water bodies and aquifers. The dredging of sand from rivers alters their flow and adversely affects aquatic life.

The SacredGroves project offers an alternative model of construction by using the following elements –

  • Re-using waste building rubble (from various Auroville and Pondicherry sites including the  Matrimandir) to construct houses made of earth concrete  – a much less cement-intensive building material.
  • Re-cycling wood from packing crates.
  • Re-using discarded petrol pump pipes for shuttering.
  • Re-using tetrapak cartons to make innovative furniture.
  • Being mindful of our own construction waste by re-using, re-cycling and composting as much as possible.
  • Being mindful of our own use of scarce resources like energy and water.



6 Replies to “The SacredGroves Project”

  1. I want to send you a hard copy of the AVI UK Newsletter which features an article about Sacred Groves. Please give me a contact name and postal address.

    1. Thank you for consideration.
      NAME : Sherin michael
      ADDRESS : 50 bharathi nagar,4th cross,puthur.trichy 620017

  2. It’s a commendable approach towards serving a society like auroville neighborhood. It always been my dream to work in such a firm, where I get an opportunity to serve a society wholeheartedly.

    Thanks for your sincerely reply. I agree to the terms and conditions of the firm n would like to contribute to the best of my knowledge.

  3. Respected sir/ma’am,
    Thank you very much for the reply. I would herein like to confirm that I have read through the documents and would gladly comply and abide by its terms and conditions.

    I would also like to add that, it got me a clearer picture, and increasingly interested in all that sacred groves is. I see it be an ethereal community, true to its motto, to its people in each and every sense. I admire the model, for the way it takes both the affordability factor and sustainability factor, to build houses which sensitise and integrate with nature, harnessing its power but minimising the waste generated and overcomes the imposition of huge financial load on the user. To which I, totally agree as this often unattended or not-completely attended factor ends up consuming a huge portion of the user’s life, giving him strain and debts, raising the question, is that the home we want to build for him?

    I am and have always been interested in hand on work, as it gets one closer to the Nature, Materials and techniques of building, I think sacred groves has gone one step ahead further by integrating each individuals mind, body and soul into the process, being a harmonious group, hence building with love.

    I am very happy to have found a Realm for me to Resonate with.
    It would truly be an enriching experience for me to be a part of the sacred groves. Given in, I would contribute my best to it each day, sharing the same joy and passion as yours.
    Thanking you,
    Abinaya Thamilarasan.

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