The trouble is that in many areas, especially in the West, we have been late confronting the problems of our own very cities’ futures. For many years, cities were seen to be victims of economic decline and hotspots of social breakdown and environmental decay. De-industrialisation, poverty issues and downsizing were thought to be eating away at communities and civic structures. Cities were seen as dinosaurs, extinct leftovers of the Industrial Revolution.
Now, we see everything in a new light. A new urban narrative is taking hold with cities portrayed as centres of economic dynamism and huge melting pots of cultural and ethnic diversity that will nourish innovation, foster productivity and provide the amenities and opportunities to attract the talent to generate solutions and better standards of living of our future cities. In fact, it’s already started. Cities are in fashion once again amongst consumers, tourists and physical transformation already visible on renewed industrial land sites and waterfronts.
As Hester Lacey so clearly points out in The Evidence, “Humans are masters of adaptation and city dwellers are fast evolving to meet the challenges brought on by our shift from rural to urban and finding opportunities within our new habitat.” And changes there will be, as words like “micro”, modular”, “multi-generational”, “collective”, “multi-generational”, “virtual” and “remote working” really take hold.
The creative industry roundup featuring the new design, retail, lifestyle, material and technology stories that you need to gen up on.
THE BIG IDEA
The 40th issue of Viewpoint explores the socio-cultural macro trends of urbanisation and the mass movement of people to cities, unpacking how these will a effect the spaces in which we live, work and play.
THE TOOL KIT
Introducing the designers, architects and other creatives who are fast evolving to meet the challenges posed by our shift from rural to urban, and nding opportunities within our new habitat. They are applying skill, craft and innovation to transform the cityscape — Adam Nathaniel Furman / Space Encounters Studio Ilio / Storefront / Something & Son.
THE VISUAL ESSAY
A visual essay featuring the work of photographer and sculptor Lorenzo Vitturi, who documents the changing face of the city through collected urban debris.
Interviewing industry leaders to get their take on The Big Idea — Daan Roosegaarde / Gerard Greene Jing Liu / Thomas Ermacora / Charlie Green.
Designers and architects of all kinds are rethinking and reshaping the urban landscape, one ingenious project at a time, from engineering nature into our homes and workspaces to harvesting the very pollution our cities create.
Reporting on emerging behavioural and attitudinal lifestyle trends that are shaping the design world — The Now Age / Conscientious Commerce / The Femme Sex Tech Revolution / The Myth of Middle Age / Open Minds.
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