ArchDaily's theme of August 2020, How We Will Live Together, invites readers to contemplate the way we inhabit spaces with those around us. In this article, we address different aspects of coexistence in a world impacted by COVID-19 and the changes that need to be made in order to create a world where everyone has the space to live, work, and grow.
Approaching the context of widening political divides and growing economic inequalities. A new spatial contract. Learning how will we live together. These thoughts brought by Hashim Sarkis, curator of the 17th International Architecture Exhibition of Venice Biennale 2021, may raise important questions about how architecture crosses and materializes social and political conflicts. To understand a more decentralized point of view, which indicates possibilities other than those dictated by normative mindsets, we interviewed Tainá de Paula, a Brazilian architect and community mobilizer in poor suburban areas.
Since the 1990s, copious amounts of cities in China have been undergoing urban renewal. Prompted by this state-facilitated urban redevelopment, skyscrapers are being built rapidly in major cities to attract affluent middle-classes, resulting in countless relocation and displacement of the working-class population. Such process is known as “gentrification”.
Due to population growth and an increase in urban density and real estate prices, architects and urban planners have been pursuing alternatives for new spatial configurations for settling and housing in the cities. The multiplication of shared housing and workspaces is an example of how the field of architecture is adapting to new ways of living in society.
Inspired by vernacular architecture, Kathryn Larsen is a bio-based designer working with seaweed. Throughout her career, she has been doing an intensive investigation into eel-grass, a material that has been used for centuries around the world. Larsen wants to apply all the benefits of this material (rot resistance, fire resistance, non-toxic, insulation characteristics comparable to mineral wool, and its ability to create carbon negative buildings) into prefabrication development and other technologies that enable the creation of new cladding and other elements, such as insulation batt and acoustic panels.
In some of the most dense cities around the world, it’s becoming an increasing challenge to find a comfortable space to live- and similar for when you die, too. It’s estimated that 55 million people pass away each year, and for every one living person today, there are 15 times the number of deceased. Yet urban planners and architectural developers are more interested in dealing with the living than dabbling in the business of death. As a result, it’s created tension in the two parallel worlds- and as time goes on, more questions are being raised about how we address public space that can be designed so that both the living and the dead can coexist.
The Un-Habitat or the United Nations agency for human settlements and sustainable urban development, whose primary focus is to deal with the challenges of rapid urbanization, has been developing innovative approaches in the urban design field, centered on the active participation of the community. ArchDaily has teamed up with UN-Habitat to bring you weekly news, article, and interviews that highlight this work, with content straight from the source, developed by our editors.
Public space has always been a top priority in every city’s urban planning agenda and given today’s world context, these urban spaces have emerged as fundamental elements of cities and neighborhoods. Plazas, squares, and parks, undeniable necessities in the urban fabric, have become, today, more vital than ever.
The COVID-19 pandemic has reshaped how we work together. From telecommuting to virtual programming, architects and designers are rethinking traditional office structures to reimagine collaboration around the world. For architect Evelyn Lee, her work as the first Senior Experience Designer at Slack Technologies centers on building better workplace experiences. In a year defined by remote work, she's exploring what culture and community mean today.
During the next decade or so, our cities will expand at an inconceivable speed. According to the UN’s 2019 World Population Prospects, our planet by 2030 is expected to have 43 megacities —classified as those with more than 10 million inhabitants. Most megacities will be in developing countries. And by mid-century, almost 70 percent of the world’s population will be urbanised, with today’s rate at just over half. Moreover, 90 percent of the urban population growth is expected to happen in Africa and Asia.