The COVID-19 pandemic has transformed how we travel and come together. As streets and buildings became empty and people practice social distancing, so too have airports experienced a tremendous decline in passengers and flights. As the aviation industry shaped globalization, it has also contributed to how quickly the disease spread. In a new aerial series, photographer Tom Hegen explores the pandemic's impact on aviation from above.
As Hegen explains in the project's brief, since the beginning of civil aviation, goods and people could be transported faster across the continents. But this intensive networking of the world also means that diseases are spreading faster than ever before. Due to globalization, the coronavirus was able to spread to all parts of the world and shut down public life. In April 2020, worldwide air traffic fell dramatically. At many airports around the world, runways are closed and used as parking areas for grounded aircrafts. The airplanes that were once a symbol of globalization have become a symbol of the current lockdown.
In the same vein as Hegen's work, The New York Times recently published a piece called "The Great Empty", showcasing a new side to urban life. From Times Square to the Place de la Concorde in Paris, photographers are capturing these "empty cities" in a defining moment across the globe. Hegen believes that as a global society, we can learn from this crisis: the global supply chains that are currently interrupted should be reconsidered, and perhaps, production can be brought back to the country where the products are sold.
With the rise of both self-imposed and mandated social distancing, as well as global turn towards remote work, COVID-19 has shaped how travel and how we work. With architects, educators and designers taking stock and looking to the future, there are major lessons that will come out of this crisis. From telecommuting and distance learning to virtual events, designers have quickly rethought traditional workflows to stay connected. At the same time, travel will unquestionably change as airports and airlines implement new measures to ensure safety and rethink passenger experience.
We invite you to check out ArchDaily's coverage related to COVID-19, read our tips and articles on Productivity When Working from Home and learn about technical recommendations for Healthy Design in your future projects. Also, remember to review the latest advice and information on COVID-19 from the World Health Organization (WHO) website.