This article was originally published on Autodesk's Redshift publication as "Customizable Communities Could Be the Key to the Future of Urban Housing."
London has a fascinating history of urbanization that stretches back to Roman settlement in 43 AD. During the Industrial Revolution and Victorian Era, the city’s population peaked, as did its problems related to population density. The air was filled with soot and smoke, crowded slums were the norm in the inner city, and cholera and other epidemics spread quickly due to inadequate sanitation.
These conditions gave rise to modern urban planning and public-health policy, which now must define what “good density” might look like in the future of urban housing. The UN predicts that by 2050, 66 percent of the world’s population will live in metropolitan areas, up from 54 percent today.