Dezeen deputy editor Tom Ravenscroft takes a look at architecture designs biggest trends of 2018, from tackling gender imbalance to off-grid living.
High-speed travel infrastructure has been in talks for years, and now architects have begun sketching out plans on how hyperloops will change transportation. UNStudio, Foster + Partners, and Priestmangoode have all created their own concepts for hyperloop stations.
Many A-list celebrities have delved into the world of architecture. Kanye West announced his first Yeezy Home that is expected to be a social housing venture. Elon Musk also said that he was in the works of creating bricks to be used for low-cost housing.
The unfinished, rustic design has also made a comeback. Unfinished surfaces and exposed concrete walls are highly trendy amongst many establishments, such as Pentolina, a pasta bar in Melbourne and Hono Izakaya, a Japanese restaurant in Quebec City.
As the discussion of gender imbalances has come to the forefront recently, architecture firms have launched initiatives to tackle this disparity. After Pritzker Prize-winning architect Richard Meier was accused of sexual harassment multiple times, the conversation became prevalent in the architecture community. Dezeen launched the Move the Needle campaign to improve gender equality and esteemed architect Elizabeth Diller said that the industry is seeing a dramatic change.
Another way architecture took a stance on worldwide issues was when research group Forensic Architecture created a 3D video of the Grenfell Tower fire, a tragedy that shook the area to its core. It received a nomination for the Turner Prize.
As technology has advanced immensely, buildings are now being 3D printed. CLS Architetti and Arup used a robot to 3D print a house. The US military also used a 3D printer to build concrete barracks. NASA also announced winners of a competition it held to design a 3D-printed habitat on Mars.
Spy museums have been on the uprise as well. David Adjaye created the Spyscape museum of espionage in New York and Johann Obermoser opened a James Bond-themes museum in Austria.
To the surprise of no one, coworking spaces have grown massively all over the world. Coworking operators such as WeWork opened within Stirling’s No 1 Poultry in London, as well as nightclub Ministry of Sound debuting a coworking office. Niche coworking spaces are also on the uprise, with female-only spaces popping up in major cities.
Indoor arches have grown in popularity, with this design being used in restaurants, bars, and even residential projects like a Parisian pied-à-terre designed by Freaks Architecture in Paris.
While the increase of technology has its advantages, it has led some to begin living off-the-grid. People are choosing to live nomadic lives in barren parts of the world, such as corners of the southern California desert.