Lionel Vijay Dsouza

Director, RC Architecture (Interview PART-1)

Vijay Dsouza, expert in the field of architecture and design. His industry experiences have been condensed in this blog in an effort to impart wisdom and learning to the entire fraternity. We asked him a series of questions to learn more about the people behind this amazing industry. He shared invaluable knowledge and insights into his profession with us, which helped shape India’s current architectural scene.

He has graced us with his valuable knowledge by sharing highlights of his professional journey in a freewheeling interview with Best Creators. He shared some of his philosophy and challenges as an expert in the Architecture and Interior Design Industry. Vijay used to play sports to stay in shape and loves playing badminton and squash to keep himself fit and sharp. He also enjoys cycling and reading to keep up with what is going on in the world.

Journey so far

He is an architect by profession. He completed his architecture from Maryland college for engineering. It’s around 25 years since he started a firm RC Architecture. 26-27 years back, they have started this in a basement. The initial investment was INR 2000 on computers, then they picked up soil cement blocks from a person who eventually became a blind. They used two plywood sheets and cut them in half so they have around 16 running foot of tables. So, it started that way only. And then from there they started growing slowly. and then technology came up and it helped a lot. Since they started with a new city, they use to take whatever project they could get hands whether it was refurbishment and architecture, interiors or anything, they were a mix basket of all the sector. So, they were doing a fair bit of architecture, hospitality, interiors or anything. And from there they started growing and five years back they built their own office in Richmond and they were pan‑India.

Most of their clients are MNC and corporate. As he mentioned that they were a mix basket, so they do work for builders in terms of apartments and commercial complexes. On one side, they do fair bit of work for governments. They are currently working with the UP government and have done a lot of work in Karnataka with the tourism department. They have also worked with few of the states and universities. On the corporate side, they have been working with big names, one of the largest projects today in India for Qualcomm which is around one and a half million square feet. They are doing work for Google for Bangalore and Gurgaon facility, ABB, Dell, GE, Wells Fargo. Currently they are around 70 people in their firm.

Top Philosophies

One should always be on context because it drives for us all our projects. Context can be the site that is given. It could be the topographic conditions of the site, the climatic, the direction of where your site is facing. Context can also be the clients and their culture and the philosophy what he wants translated into the space. It also depends on the current time that you are in, what are the trends in the industry. So, context for him as one world encapsulates a lot of things that is required and that’s probably a philosophy. It always keeps the context in place. It means that every project that we do will have its own language and style.

There’s nothing that the common trend probably will be being innovative and creative. So, for him in one word, the philosophy would be on context.

Factors that Impacted the Efficiency of Clients

Today where they are, he is quite happy to say that they’ve been able to impact a lot of 50 fortune, a hundred companies in the way that shapes their culture. For him, it’s quite an important thing because he and his clients have been in the industry in the workplace building workplaces for themselves for a half a decade. Getting to work with them and then trying to shape their culture in terms of how they should even approach work, how they interact, communicate and bring people together. He has been able to work quite a few of the leading companies and make a change which later on they take and implement in Western markets. And this has been vital contribution when it comes to the interior part which is quite fascinating. One of our country’s growths has been IT, which has primarily occurred in large cities with tech companies and other companies looking to innovate sometimes in backend work and be able to shape their culture, and this is how they likely directly or indirectly affect companies that are large corporations shaping a future.  Being a part of that and trying to shape the work culture is a contribution. To be continued>>