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RUMTEK MONASTERY
MONASTERY

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ROPEWAY STATION AREA

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VISUAL ASSESSMENT
SURVEY METHODS
INTRODUCTION
Visual landscape assessment is a key element in landscape planning, management and monitoring, and serves as an important basis for landscape policy. The identifying character of rural and urban environments is, to a large extent, built upon visual perception. Visual landscape attributes like spaciousness and related indicators,
such as degree of openness, building density and the nature of spatial boundaries, are important elements in landscape perception and preference.
The areas covered under the assessment of Gangtok were:
1. Sonam Tshering Marg
2. Mg Road
3. Ropeway, Namnang
4. Chandmari
5. Secretariat
6. Palace and Palace Road
7. Deorali Fringe area
8. Rumtek Monastery
9. Sikkim Himalayan Zoological Park

COMPONENTS
1. Recognising Topography: through pictures, plans and sections

Flood plain

Lowlands

Undulations

Hills

Mountains

2. Recognising Landscape elements: through sketches and photographs

Steep landforms

Plains

Built forms, farming, landcover, woodland, hydrology, communication

3. Recognising Aesthetical and perpetual aspects: through sketches, color palettes and photographs
Scale, enclosure, diversity,texture, form, line, color, balance, movement, pattern, unity, security, stimulus, tranquility, pleasure, visual dynamics

4. Drawing Inferences: through the collected data


Regarding the landscape character of a particular region, the key characteristics, the management and condition of the place and the sense of place.

VISUAL ASSESSMENT
AREA: SONAM TSHERING MARG

THROUGH PHOTOGRAPHS

The view shows the distant hills of the Gangtok region


from the Sonam Tshering Marg.

THROUGH COLOR PALETTES

RECOGNISING LANDFORM/TOPOGRAPHY

The view shows the residential area on the sonam Tshering Marg. Floors on the buildings are constantly on a rise.

VISUAL ASSESSMENT
AREA- SONAM TSHERING MARG
THROUGH SKETCHES

RECOGNISING LANDSCAPE ELEMENTS

RECOGNISING AESTHETICAL AND PERPETUAL ASPECTS

Typical sketch of the street showing the retaining wall, storm


water drains and the built form.

INFERENCES
The experience through the street offers a subtle variation, from hotel accommodations, residential
apartments and homes. The natural slope of the street, acts as a natural drain for the rainwater.Their is
high pedestrian traffic. The natural vegetation forms the backdrop whereas the houses have introduced
potted species.
A typical house of the area between two layers of vegetation

VISUAL ASSESSMENT
AREA:MG ROAD

THROUGH PHOTOGRAPHS

The view shows a busy MG Road during the morning


hours. One can spot the street furniture and plants. the
entire road is pedestrianised with shops on either side
and a wide median in the centre.
THROUGH COLOR PALETTES

RECOGNISING LANDFORM/TOPOGRAPHY

The view shows the starting of the MG road with the pedestrian footover in front. A tall statue of Mahatma Gandhi
marks the beginning of the road.

VISUAL ASSESSMENT
AREA:MG ROAD
THROUGH SKETCHES

RECOGNISING LANDSCAPE ELEMENTS

RECOGNISING AESTHETICAL AND PERPETUAL ASPECTS

View of the Mg Road- street furniture.

A portion of the cross -section from Mg market to Lal market

INFERENCES
The area is a lush green coniferous zone with animal areas dispered around the access path. Shades
of green dominate the backgorund and the foreground. Faunal and floral interaction is on its peak. One
can hear numerous sounds of various animals. Also provides a sense of height and beautiful views of
the Gangtok town below. The scale of spaces ranges from intimate ones to clear zones.

VISUAL ASSESSMENT
AREA:ROPEWAY, NAMNANG

THROUGH COLOR PALETTES

RECOGNISING LANDFORM/TOPOGRAPHY

THROUGH PHOTOGRAPHS

Around the deorali area:Vegetation around the Deorali


station area is mostly decidious and other broad leaved
varieties---conifers are infrequent. Some efforts have
been taken to beautify the area with hedges and flower
beds along the road sides.

Namnang station :The area is surrounded by dense vegetation which consists mainly of conifers such as Japonica
species , eucalyptus varieties and native shrubs.Little
white and yellow daisies are also seen blooming on the
crevices of retaining walls along the approach road.

VISUAL ASSESSMENT
AREA:ROPEWAY, NAMNANG
THROUGH SKETCHES

RECOGNISING LANDSCAPE ELEMENTS

A view of the busy town from the Ropeway

RECOGNISING AESTHETICAL AND PERPETUAL ASPECTS

A glimpse of the ropeway station

Forests on the way

INFERENCES
The ropeway is an insight to the town in one go. Offers exciting views of the natural and man- made
landscape around. It connects the highest point of the town to the lowest.Passes through dense and
thickly populated area of the town. Whereas the area around the ropeway terminal is green and rich in
flora. It has the potential of a landscape design being introduced.

VISUAL ASSESSMENT
AREA: CHANDMARI

THROUGH PHOTOGRAPHS

The view shows the kind of residential construction in the


Chandmari area.

THROUGH COLOR PALETTES

RECOGNISING LANDFORM/TOPOGRAPHY

View showing the streets of the residential areas. Streets


accomodate both vehicular and pedestrian traffic.

VISUAL ASSESSMENT
AREA:CHANDMARI
THROUGH SKETCHES

RECOGNISING LANDSCAPE ELEMENTS

Houses with sloping roofs

RECOGNISING AESTHETICAL AND PERPETUAL ASPECTS

A typical house with potted plants in front

INFERENCES
Active street life, good use of outdoor spaces, entertainment, always vibrant. The area seems to be
colorful and dynamic. Local architecture, different from the main town can be spotted.
A view showing the road with houses on both sides.

VISUAL ASSESSMENT
AREA:SECRETARIAT

THROUGH PHOTOGRAPHS

The view shows the Secretariat in the backdrop with lush


green vegetation in the foreground. also shows the heavy
parking on the roadsides and pedestrian movement.
THROUGH COLOR PALETTES

RECOGNISING LANDFORM/TOPOGRAPHY

The view has been taken from the development area


road, it is the upcoming urban hub of the town. One can
spot the contemporary style multistoreyed buildings.

VISUAL ASSESSMENT
AREA:SECRETARIAT
THROUGH SKETCHES

RECOGNISING LANDSCAPE ELEMENTS

An impression of the flora of the region

RECOGNISING AESTHETICAL AND PERPETUAL ASPECTS

NH31 Highway with vehicular and pedestrian segregation

A small junction with the main highway diverting into another.

INFERENCES
The Secretariat area is a an urban setting with a diverse landscape character. The area though busy
tends to have a calm and a pleasant character to it because of the dense vegetation. The diversity in
fllora and fauna attracts the onlooker. Dark and shadowed beacuse of broad canopies. Shades of green
remain dominant. The traffic- pedestrian and vehicular, is managed well.

VISUAL ASSESSMENT
AREA:PALACE AND THE PALACE ROAD

THROUGH PHOTOGRAPHS

The view shows the monastery inside the palace complex. The monastery has a garden with various flowering
species in the front.
THROUGH COLOR PALETTES

RECOGNISING LANDFORM/TOPOGRAPHY

The gate of the palace as seen from the palace road,


which is also know as the ridge park road as it sits on the
ridge of the hill. It gives amazing views of the Mg Marg
below.

VISUAL ASSESSMENT
AREA: PALACE AND THE PALACE ROAD
THROUGH SKETCHES

RECOGNISING LANDSCAPE ELEMENTS

View of the Palace Monastery

RECOGNISING AESTHETICAL AND PERPETUAL ASPECTS

View of the palace road

INFERENCES
It is a well developed area with gardens and green sidewalks. Dominated by high pedestrian movement
in the morning and evening. The microclimate is pleasant because of a vast number of conifers and
other tree species. Walking is pleasurable with beautiful views of the downtown.
A section through different layers of the palace hill.

VISUAL ASSESSMENT
AREA:DEORALI FRINGE

THROUGH PHOTOGRAPHS

The view shows the crowded streets of the Deorali market


area, the dense construction on both sides of the road,
which itself is busy throughout the day.The view also
shows pedestrian movement on one side.
THROUGH COLOR PALETTES

RECOGNISING LANDFORM/TOPOGRAPHY

The view shows the fringe area where newer buildings


are coming up. The construction is pretty much multi-storeyed. The commercial zone is expanding downwards
through the Derali area.

VISUAL ASSESSMENT
AREA:DEORALI FRINGE
THROUGH SKETCHES

RECOGNISING LANDSCAPE ELEMENTS

Section through the area.

RECOGNISING AESTHETICAL AND PERPETUAL ASPECTS

A view from the Deorali area of the hills behind

The butterfly overbridge and the busy road down below

INFERENCES
The butterfly skywalk and the ropeway station become the major landmarks of the area. It has distributed vegetation. Few trees are present on the roadsides. The area also offers interesting views of the
lower valley. Urban fabric is dense with less green or landscaped areas. Mixed landuse. Shades of grey
and vehicle/construction noise dominate the region.

VISUAL ASSESSMENT
AREA: RUMTEK MONASTERY

THROUGH PHOTOGRAPHS

The view shows the garden at Rumtek with the employee quarters behind. A number of flowering species have
been introduced in the campus apart from the native flora
which add vibrance and color to this area.
THROUGH COLOR PALETTES

RECOGNISING LANDFORM/TOPOGRAPHY

The view shows the different levels of the Rumtek Monastery and the natural vegetation of the Sikkim hills behind.
The monastery stands way up the hill and is smeared in a
bright palette of colors according to the Buddhist philosophy.

VISUAL ASSESSMENT
AREA: RUMTEK MONASTERY
THROUGH SKETCHES

RECOGNISING LANDSCAPE ELEMENTS

The terraces or the levels of the Monastery as seen from the


plaza

RECOGNISING AESTHETICAL AND PERPETUAL ASPECTS

The entrance gate to the Monastery

INFERENCES
The area is calm and far above the hustle and bustle of the roads and vehicles. The strong monochromatic backdrop of coniferous trees provides a strong contrast to the colorful buildings and the introduced flora species in the premises.
An overall view of the Monastery

VISUAL ASSESSMENT
AREA: SIKKIM HIMALYAN ZOOLOGICAL PARK

THROUGH PHOTOGRAPHS

The view shows the dominating conifer forest behind. The


layers of forest are seen fading off the zoo accessway.
The journey through the road provides numerous view
points.
THROUGH COLOR PALETTES

RECOGNISING LANDFORM/TOPOGRAPHY

The view shows the diverse vegetation on both sides of


the zoo road. Number of species of bamboo, ferns, conifers, hydrangeas, azaleas and begonias are found here.

VISUAL ASSESSMENT
AREA: SIKKIM HIMALYAN ZOOLOGICAL PARK
THROUGH SKETCHES

RECOGNISING LANDSCAPE ELEMENTS

The red panda area with the coniferous background

RECOGNISING AESTHETICAL AND PERPETUAL ASPECTS

The access to the viewpoint in the Himalyan black bear area

View inside the pheasants area

INFERENCES
The area is a lush green coniferous zone with animal areas dispered around the access path. Shades
of green dominate the backgorund and the foreground. Faunal and floral interaction is on its peak. One
can hear numerous sounds of various animals. Also provides a sense of height and beautiful views of
the Gangtok town below. The scale of spaces ranges from intimate ones to clear zones.

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REFERENCES
BOOKS :
1. Polunin, Oleg & Stainton, Adam. Flowers of the Himalaya, 2008
2. Stainton, Adam. A Supplement on Flowers of Himalaya
3. ENVIS Center. Sacred Groves of Sikkim
4. ENVIS Center. Biodiversity of Sikkim and conserving a global hotspot
GOVERNMENT DEPARTMENTS :
1. ENVIS Center, Gangtok
2. Forest Department, Gangtok
3. UDHD (Urban Development and Housing Development), Gangtok
4. PHED (Public Health Engineering Department), Gangtok
5. Tourists Information Center, Gangtok
6. Tourism Department, Tadong, Gangtok
7. Geological Department, Gangtok
WEB RESOURCES :
1. www.sikkim.gov.in
2. www.sikenvis.nic.in
3. www.sikkimudhd.org
4. www.sikkim-irrigation.gov.in
5. www.raysikkim.org