Architecture has come a long way in proving itself to be more than just a medium of increasing the artistic and aesthetic value of a building. In the last few decades, this field has spread its wings covering various aspects of design like landscape, interiors, product, urban, etc. But, how will architecture evolve in the future? The fast-paced progress of our society demands this profession to be more adaptable, and hence increases the potential of the field even more. Today architects work hand in hand with the advancing technology, cultural sensitivity, and impacts of climate change. Some professionals are even considering extraterrestrial architecture. Concepts like sustainability, carbon footprint, affordability have become compulsory considerations for this industry. However, it should widen its scope and include more transformative topics like regenerative architecture, digital tools, robotics, parametricism, etc. It is time to rethink our methods, integrate our artistic sensibilities with science, and create something beyond imagination

Role of Architects

In the future, Architects might not play a key role in designing infrastructure. As the scope of architecture would increase. They have to collaborate with other professionals like social scientists, environmental specialists, robotics engineers, etc to play an active role in the design team. These new creative consultancies may encourage greater collaboration among those involved in the design and construction process. However, this wouldn’t limit the possibilities for an architect. Individuals keen on solving the diverse array of issues that impact the world around them can foresee themselves as Architects. They also have to explore new possibilities like stage design, public art, installation design, public space design, and other fields.

Tools that would shape the Future of Architecture

The pandemic had bound all of us in our houses, making it difficult for everyone to communicate their ideas. This has probably highlighted the importance of modern tools in the field of designing. For example, the crisis compelled most organizations to promptly digitize all aspects that were still taking place on the premises. People are taking a more holistic approach in portraying and integrating their designs. John Maeda, Design Partner, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers., quotes that “There will be new kinds of design tools to help designers in tech craft effective experiences for consumers that go beyond “beautiful” pixels. Most of the tools we use today are rooted in conventional two-dimensional, static media, as they all grew up during the “desktop publishing” revolution of the ’80s and ’90s. We will see more “hybrid” tools that cross code with design, like Koen Bok’s Framer.js, Ben Fry and Casey Reas’s Processing, and Evelyn Eastmond’s DesignBlocks.” The studio of an architect has to transform reflecting their expanding practice. They would have to incorporate tools like Virtual reality, Building information, 3D printing, robotics, Parametricism, etc.

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Building Information modelling_© Emerging Trends That Will Shape the Future of Architecture | by TMD STUDIO LTD | TMD STUDIO’s Insights | Medium

Modern Approaches in the Ever-changing world

How do you envision the future of architecture

Will it be more sustainable or will it be a repetition of buildings, or will it be straight out of a sci-fi movie. In a world that is constantly evolving, modern approaches are necessary. The modern tools may indicate that we are moving towards a more futuristic sci-fi-based version of architecture. Twenty years ago, people probably envisioned cities to be marked by iconic buildings, flying cars, and luxurious interior spaces. Different concepts like the colonization of mars, underwater cities, etc are emerging. But in this era of climatic crisis, we have greater problems to solve. There is a focus on the importance of green infrastructure and energy efficiency. The scarcity of land would probably compel us to build vertical cities or think more innovatively. For instance, Amphibious architecture or floating architecture. But some vital methodologies are being implemented in our design principles, for a better future.

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Floating Architecture_© Studio Tom Emerson

Sustainability: Sustainable architecture aims to design buildings that are functional now but have a low environmental effect and use less energy in the future to benefit future generations. This approach may use modern technologies like solar power, green insulation, sustainable resource sourcing, use of smart appliances, etc. It may also utilize the age-old traditional knowledge of indigenous people and preserve the culture and nature. Organizations like LEED, IGBC, GRIHA, etc had been set up to encourage such practices.

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Biophilic vertical social housing by  Stefano Boeri_©Stefano Boeri designs first tree-covered social-housing project (dezeen.com)

Use of innovative materials: It is no longer sufficient to construct a concrete or brick structure and call it a day. The materials utilized in construction must be carefully considered. Sustainability, carbon footprint, cost, and innovation are now all factors that architects must consider when selecting building materials. According to a 2017 study, global cement production accounts for around 5% of human-caused CO2 emissions each year. Brick production is also blamed for a slew of problems, including soil degradation due to raw material sourcing. Wood burns, steel rusts, and glass breaks, to name a few things. Engineers, scientists, and start-ups are suggesting new materials in response to these limitations, claiming that they may assist improve on our current construction staples. Some examples of emerging sustainable building materials would be 3D printed bioplastic, hydro-ceramics, hempcrete, bamboo, rammed earth, hollow clay bricks, etc.

 

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Antony Gibbon’s vision of a building shaped with hempcrete_©www.ubm-development.com

Regenerative Architecture: Regeneration may be defined as a method of revitalizing systems that are lost in existence. This process goes beyond the approach of sustainability. It is fundamental to the system of ecology where the output is more than input, developing a net positive system.

In this era of constant flux, an architect has to innovatively integrate traditional spatial knowledge with cut-edge technologies to create sustainable designs. Architects are recognizing the importance of designing inclusive places that reflect the same values as their communities and the general public. Though the future is uncertain, we might conclude that adaptability is the key to progress in this field.

References: 

  • Emerging trends that would shape the future of Architecture  [online]( last updated:5  Jan 2017) Available at Emerging Trends That Will Shape the Future of Architecture | by TMD STUDIO LTD | TMD STUDIO’s Insights | Medium
  • Five innovative materials that could change construction  [online]( last updated: 17  Jan 2019) Available at Five innovative materials that could change construction | E&T Magazine (theiet.org)
Author

Srishti Dasgupta is currently pursuing Architecture from Mumbai University. Her passion for art initiated her interest in Architecture.The creative field also inspired her to explore various aspects of art and culture. She intends to keep capturing the rationalities of everyday world, integrated with the creative world through different mediums.

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