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Future architecture

Alissa Ugolini—homify UK Alissa Ugolini—homify UK
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There is a lot of talk in design circles about the topic of future architecture. Some critics believe designers will return to the original vernacular of homes; honouring the methods proven to withstand centuries of weathering, war and decay. Then, there is a totally opposing view, provided by those who envisage space age technologies and ground-breaking discoveries in material finishes and formations. Will we still live on the ground, up in the sky, or perhaps even have made it to Mars in the years ahead? Without a crystal ball, there is really no way to delve into the future and see what lays ahead. Yet, already, there are many architects and designers who are pushing boundaries and breaking the mould, though in vastly different directions, towards the future.

Today on homify, we are going to critically analyse a few projects that may gives us clues about architecture in the future. From traditional to all out futuristic, from community to self-contained, we are going to look at 5 examples of the changing face of architecture in the 21st century.

Co-housing communities

LILAC Co-Housing, a room with a view:  Houses by ModCell

LILAC Co-Housing, a room with a view


LILAC is an anagram for Low Impact Living Affordable Community, and is definitely a project and idea that we can see growing in popularity. Inner city living and urban sprawl have taken over, with very little care being taken to address important issues such as community or green open space. Located in west Leeds on an old school site, the community will include a mix of one and two bed flats and three and four bedroom houses. The majority of the occupants will have a private garden, with the flats on the upper floors having access to a generously sized balcony. The internal floor plan boasts a self-contained kitchen, bathroom and living space.

However, the twist lies in the common house, which is said to form the heart of the community, offering a chance for occupants to interact via shared facilities including a community garden. ModCell, the innovative firm behind such an interesting commercial project, have sought to minimise the footprint of the co-housing space, with projected heating bills of less than £200 per annum.

A nomadic calling

For some, the idea of being rooted to one place for an extended period of time is harrowing, as is the thought of being tied down to a mortgage until your dying days. Thankfully, the next shift in architecture supports an affordable nomadic lifestyle, with occupants able to pack up and shift whenever the seasons or wind changes. NOMAD Micro Homes have come up with this brilliant solution that will change the face of cities and communities, giving homeowners the flexibility to live where they want, when they want. Suitable as a permanent living solution, guest house or holiday home, you can be mortgage free for life, or have a tiny £350 repayment loan for over just 5 years! It almost sounds too good to be true! Perhaps the size of the pictured unit is not quite big enough? Not a problem. There are a wide range of styles and sizes available to cater to your needs.

Into the trees

It's really not a crazy proposal to suggest that humans will be living amongst trees in the not so distant future. Maybe living conditions on the ground will change thanks to chemical dumping or natural disasters, so, it's time to change direction and look up! Titled the Roost Treehouse, Anthony Gibbons Designs has proposed we live in homes that mimic the forms found in nature; in this instance, trees. The design is said to camouflage itself in such a way that it will neither interfere with the growth of the tree, nor will it affect the environment or surrounding landscape. Each capsule has a central staircase that leads to an outdoor platform. The interior of the pod sleeps two people, with the top platform providing occupants with stunning views over the canopies of trees. Of course, the materials used in construction are sustainable, and, if you like the idea, yet do not have a tree to build it around, a central pole can be used in lieu of a tree trunk. What a marvellous notion indeed!

Sustainable building materials

Commercial and public green roofs:  Houses by Organic Roofs
Organic Roofs

Commercial and public green roofs

Organic Roofs

Green roofs and solar panels are not a new sight, and though not traditionally seen, are making their way into both residential and commercial properties thanks to the innovation of companies like Organic Roofs. The thermal benefits provided by a green roof are second-to-none, and have been scientifically proven and documented. Depending on the size of the property and roof, overall energy costs can be reduced from between 25% to 80%, with average heating and cooling loads slashed by as much as 30%. Perhaps the traditional notion of rafters, beams and a rooftop will be totally abandoned in the future? Instead, both designers and homeowners will opt for more environmentally sensitive solutions that not only help nature, but also improve air quality and habitat for densely populated inner city living situations. Just imagine, instead of seeing an stretch of corrugated steel or tiled rooftops in an aerial view of a city, that we find ourselves presented with an expanse of luscious green rooftops inhabited by birds and scented by the wonderful perfume of nature.

Whitton Drive:  Terrace house by GK Architects Ltd

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