Many of us have probably seen or heard of the conversation on whether architecture is coming to an end or not. Some believe that robots and automation may be the end of it and even predict the end to be 2025. Yes, that close. Can you imagine? For someone that is about to study architecture, that may sound very terrifying and some people already in the profession may find that hilarious. Everyone else in between has mixed emotions and sees how it is possible and how it is not. 

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Architecture ©Pinterest

Technology has undeniably had an impact on Architecture but this by no means suggests that Architects won’t be needed more and here’s why.

Human beings need shelter.

They have and they always will. The shelter is a basic need and even the cavemen knew that. For as long as human beings continue to exist, the need for shelter will always need to be met. The first forms of shelter were built to meet their needs using readily available materials and with the knowledge, they had at the time. They needed shelter for survival. 

Today, human beings desire much more than that and Architecture first came about as a result of this. We cannot predict the future but the thing we can be sure of is that architecture will go on for as long as humanity does. 

An example of a form of shelter in the 21st century ©Pinterest

The world is evolving.  

And people are too. As people evolve, so does everything else around them. Their culture, expectations, and way of living change as well. Architecture is an art and one other reason why robots would not replace human beings is that they are not creative. Robots cannot create something new but can only make something from already existing pieces of information. In a world that is constantly evolving, there is a great need for creativity more than ever. 

Global warming for instance has had a huge impact on how buildings are designed and built these days. Buildings to affect the environment and climate change. The energy in buildings that are used for lighting, cooling, and heating results in the increase of carbon emissions into the atmosphere.

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The Bosco Verticale in Milan, Italy. © Business Online

To reverse this and create a solution to this problem, energy-saving buildings are now being desired and designed. The popular term ‘form follows function’ that was coined decades ago is in present-day changing to ‘form follows environment’ which supports sustainability. Sustainable or green building is creating a structure that is environmentally responsible and resource-efficient throughout the building’s life cycle. This means being environmentally conscious from planning to design, construction, operation, maintenance, renovation, and demolition.

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Suzlon One Earth in India © Quora

Some common features of the sustainable building include the use of low carbon building materials, the use of natural light through passive design, utilizing native vegetation, collecting rainwater, the use of solar panels, and the recycling of water. The number of sustainable buildings around the world has doubled and is still on the rise. Some of the world’s popular green buildings include Greenwich community village (London), Parkroyal collection Pickering (Singapore), Bosco Verticale (Milan), and Suzlon One earth (India).

Not only have climatic changes in Architecture and the role of architects but so have health concerns. This year experienced and is still experiencing a pandemic that has changed life as we know it. Since culture and our ways of living are a major influence on how architects design buildings, Architecture in the next few years will not be the same as the function of a home or an office will no longer be the same. 

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A proposal for an educational center that meets all Covid-19 requirements  © Valentino Gareri

Architecture is so much more than it was. 

Not so long ago, people believed that architects only designed buildings. That’s still kind of true. Architects design buildings but they also do much more than that. In a generation that’s much more connected and easily informed, Architecture isn’t just for architects and engineers. It’s also about people. As it should be because buildings are being used by people. With the use of media at its highest, a lot of new career paths have emerged for Architects which include more than designing and drawing. 

Architecture journalism is an example of this because a lot more architects are beginning to express their passion for architecture through writing and photography. Or rather, express their passion for writing and photography through architecture.

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Generali Tower in Milan Italy © Zaha Hadid shot by Marco Tagliarino
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The reflection of the main hall is a glass case at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London shot by Thomas Knowles. © Twitter

Jonathan Glancey, Paul Goldberger, Michael Kimmelman, and Inga Saffron are some of the world’s known architectural journalists. Recognized architectural photographers include Edmund Sumner, Fernando Guerra, Ishita Sitwala, and Mike Kelly. Architects have also been known to branch into other creative design sectors like furniture design, automobile design, and set design. Some famous architects to do this include Zaha Hadid, Frank Gehry, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, and Rem Koolhaas. 

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The Barcelona chair was designed by Ludwig van der Rohe. It was initially made from ivory pigskin and traditional leather. © Pinterest

The possibilities of Architecture are endless and it has so much to offer to daring and limitless dreamers. 

Zyabo M'hango
Author

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