Trendspotting: Homes of the Future
Irwin Weiner ASID - Hats off to the architects, contractors, and city planners who are forward thinking enough to encourage dramatic bursts of new home building that, shall we say, totally breaks the mold.
We're used to seeing the vernacular box house with pitched roof and porch and a yard with the usual outdoor rooms. But today's "homes of the future" are anything but traditional.
Here are some trends worth noting:
- Many new communities are being built with low or no carbon footprints. Rainwater gets recycled, sometimes dramatically so as in Meixi Lake, China - a high-rise eco city filters the water that goes into this planned community's lake (below, bottom photo).
- Dynamic modern architecture from top residential designers (top photo, home designed by architect Mark Koehler and second photo, glass house on stilts designed by Benthem Crouwel) is showcased in planned cities of the future, like beautiful Almere, Netherlands.
- Solar energy is being used to power clusters of homes in newly-planned communities.
- Almere has led the way in relegating cars to underground roads. The surface is reclaimed by pedestrians and cyclists, reducing pollution and noise - see today's featured video below for a cycling tour of Almere from videographer Harald Walker.
- Will global warming increase sea level and endanger coastal towns? Ijburg, Amsterdam in the Netherlands has a cluster of 75 floating houses to address land shortages of the future and the rising tides of the future (above, third photo).