Prince Charles to build ‘green utopia’

Updated: Jan 11, 2011, 20:54 PM IST

London: The Prince of Wales is planning to build a shantytown for 15000 poor people in India inspired by the one he saw in `Slumdog Millionaire`.

As a part of the plan, schools, shops and 3,000 homes will be built, reports a daily.

Charles plans to turn a 25-acre expanse of Indian wasteland on the outskirts of either Calcutta or Bangalore into a ‘mini oasis in the desert’ and the development will be modelled on Poundbury, the Dorset model village that has been Prince Charles’s 30-year pet project.

“When you enter what looks from the outside like an immense mound of plastic and rubbish, you immediately come upon an intricate network of streets with miniature shops, houses and workshops, each one made out of any material that comes to hand,” a daily quoted him as saying.

“We have a great deal to learn about how complex ¬systems can self-organise to ¬create a harmonious whole,” he added.

The new town, for mainly low-caste residents, will be ‘high-¬density but pleasant’, a spokesman for the prince’s charity said.

It will be designed to collect rainwater, which will be used for showering, washing and in toilets before being recycled to water plants. Shade and natural ventilation will combat temperatures that regularly top 38 degrees Celsius.

And instead of shared sanitation blocks, residents will have individual toilets and waste facilities.

The spokesman said, “India is a rapidly expanding economic power and its housing market is increasingly vibrant.

“The proposed development follows the prince’s vision, and it’s fair to compare it to Poundbury or Knockroon (a second model village planned for Scotland).”