Temple towns have given rise to thriving artisan communities, from goldsmiths to weavers, producing not only religious offerings but also exquisite art for residents and pilgrims. These sacred places are economic and cultural anchors, fostering unique trade clusters and drawing in performers, musicians, and delectable cuisine. They’re quiet havens for children to study and leisure getaways for working-class women. Beyond their structural beauty, temples preserve cultural heritage through classical performances and lively festivals, drawing thousands of pilgrims to the surrounding streets.
Madurai, an ancient temple town dating to the 6th century, is celebrated for its architectural grandeur and rich legends centered around the powerful deity Meenakshi. The city’s concentric layout follows Shilpa Shastra guidelines, and it’s historically known as the “City of the Night.”
Meenakshi Amman Temple serves as a dynamic hub, fostering social, cultural, religious, and economic connections among the people of Madurai and beyond, enhancing community and quality of life.
From February 10 to 14, 2024, placemakers from India and abroad will convene for Placemaking Week India, themed around Temple Townmaking and set against the vibrant backdrop of Madurai. Here, we hope to explore the unique, ‘organic’ public spaces intrinsic to temple precincts and tackle local place challenges. We aim to incorporate placemaking principles and practices in Madurai to create a more inclusive and culturally rich city for residents and visitors alike.
Placemaking Week India 2024 will showcase how historic and religious sites can be integrated into the urban fabric and serve as dynamic public spaces that transcend their primary functions.
The annual event of Placemaking India is where the magic of networking, fun, collective learning and collaboration happens. Read our Event Report from Waterside Placemaking Week India 2022.
A warm welcome awaits you at Temple Townmaking Placemaking Week India 2024 in February in Madurai! Register before Thursday, 25th January to avail of the early bird rates. The participation fee of Rs. 7,500 covers all the activities, transport to Karaikudi and six heritage meals.
Forty rooms of the 3-star Royal Court Hotel have been block-booked for registrants to Placemaking Week India 2024 at a 25% discount over regular tariffs. Within a ten minute walk of the west gopuram of Meenakshi Amman temple and just opposite the Madurai Railway Station, Royal Court is ideally nested in the bustling city centre and is equipped with a health club and offers round the clock room service, tea/coffee maker in all rooms, electronic safe and a doctor on call. Children under 8 years stay free. Room rates with complimentary breakfast range from Rs. 2,300 per day for a shared room in the superior category to Rs. 5500 for double occupancy in the premium category.
Capacity Building for
local authorities and
National conference on temple towns: building syncretic communities
Walkshops and co-
creation: cultural and
Evenings dedicated to live
action around the
Meenakshi Amman Temple
Here’s what attendees had to say about Placemaking Week India 2022
The Smart Citizen
Thiagarajar College of Engineering
Placemaking Week India 2024 Temple Townmaking