The queer crowd has always been present, finding ways to exist, gather, and celebrate. Although their visibility hasn't always been highlighted throughout history due to the consciousness of having to submit to heteronormative and strict mass normality in the past, doesn't mean they previously didn't have their own spaces to call their own. Queer spaces, past and present, have been categorized as strong, vibrant, vigorous, and worthy of occupying their own place in history, filling in as safe places for identifying individuals, places of social gathering, entertainment, and even offering community housing; therefore, there will always be a need for queer spaces.
Community Design: The Latest Architecture and News
Co-living is a residential community living model, referring to a modern form of group housing that has significantly transformed London life and the UK as a whole. The notion of co-living has even more so been popularized by the rise of housing startups, with many offering affordable housing in homes and apartments alike shared by a handful of adult housemates.
Participatory design is a democratic process that aims to offer equal input for all stakeholders, with a particular focus on the users, not usually involved directly in the traditional method of spatial creation. The idea is based on the argument that engaging the user in the process of designing spaces can have a positive impact on the reception of those spaces. It eases the process of appropriation, helps create representative and valuable spaces, and thus creates resiliency within the urban and rural environment.
Disney, the multinational entertainment and media conglomerate announced its new addition to its Signature Experiences Program. Titled "Cotino", part of its new Storyliving by Disney venture, the master plan is Disney's first master-planned community project, and will feature distinctly-designed housing units and neighborhoods, along with commercial and civic amenities and man-made beaches in the heart of Rancho Mirage, California's Coachella Valley.
UNStudio has recently published a report exploring the broader scope of community building and placemaking in the post-pandemic urban environment. Through examples from their practice, UNStudio highlights various design strategies currently incorporated in architecture and urban planning that cater to the universal and crucial need to connect socially. In addition, the practice stresses the importance of “ third spaces” and human-scale connectivity, as well as the blending of digital and physical spaces of interaction.
When designing community spaces, the architectural concept can easily clash with the user's experience. Therefore, engaging the community and future users in the project development and design process is a way of adding different perspectives to the architect's vision towards a more intelligent architecture.
Johns Hopkins University has selected BIG to design its new Student Center, regenerating the heart of its campus and reviving the social experience, from a shortlisted list of 4 offices, after a months-long international competition. Entitled “The Village”, the proposal is an “open, modern, and welcoming facility envisioned as a social engagement hub for all members of the Hopkins community”.
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.
As the climate crisis continues to unfold, professionals in architecture, engineering, and sustainable design have relentlessly searched for new ways to mitigate the negative effects of modern industrial production. One group of such innovators, Zero Mass Water, have contributed to this effort through their creation of ‘the world’s first and only hydropanel’ - an apparatus called SOURCE.
Some assembly required for this vision of future urban living. Known for simple, well-designed, flat-pack furniture, IKEA is proposing expanding their DIY-model to a much larger scale: entire city centers. Democratic Design Days is an annual event where IKEA introduces its upcoming brands and collaborations, this year featuring The Urban Village Project, a collaboration between SPACE10 and EFFEKT Architects. After two years of research, SPACE10 (IKEA’s global research and design lab) is releasing their vision to the public for a new way to design, build, and share our homes, neighborhoods, and cities.
This project emerged during the summer of 2015, when CHOPEkE Collective, together with Paúl Pérez, a seminarian and active member of the group, visited the community of Santa Luisa de Marillac, located in the central periphery of Ciudad Juárez. At the time, members of the community had an "unworthy" space -as they called it- for their meetings and spiritual activities.