That figure proved difficult to achieve back in the 1960s, a time when much more space was available. But the challenge seems far more daunting today. How many can we build and at what price? Planners, architects and policymakers seem to concentrate on practical, mostly technical aspects concerning the feasibility of constructing huge numbers of affordable homes and the resulting effects on the environment.
Yet the construction challenge is about More Than Houses. It is also about how all these individual units connect to collective networks. How can we respond to the growing tendency to view the home as an isolated bubble? Hooked up to the new agora on the internet, the home has become a virtual meeting place where occupants communicate through social media.
Moreover, and corona has accelerated the process, we are seeing the contours of a new society that facilitates the individual’s every need. You no longer need to leave home for work, food or entertainment. In recent years this ‘stay-at-home’ economy has grown enormously in the US, China and Japan. That has had a dramatic effect on the appearance of cityscapes filled with deserted districts, and landscapes filled with anonymous distribution centers and new digital hubs.
What purpose do parks and squares serve as traditional shared spaces in an increasingly segregated urban landscape that emphasizes the individual more than the community?
With More than Houses, AFFR will explore the parallel worlds emerging behind the walls of our homes, and how they are shaping the society for which we are building.