We live in a historical period in which we were aware of the importance of protecting our planet from the inconsiderate handling of pollutants such as plastics and fuels even before the virus took over our lives. The normality to which we are now returning is a different one. A normality that, for all those companies that can make this possible, consists of smart working, video aperitifs, more family life, where we rediscover natural living and give it more value.
All this will inevitably lead to a restructuring of architecture and territory, which will probably become even more beautiful.
Cities will have to revise their urban planning, providing wider pavements, cycle paths and green spaces to ensure social distance and a more conscious use of public transport.
Many people will decide to move away from the cities.
But there are also architects like Jacques Herzog and Pierre De Meuron who, instead, believe that the houses of the future will not necessarily have to move to the countryside, but rather be built in the city so as not to lose sight of “the concept of social proximity”, albeit in another way.
The design of new urban centres
These aspects will have to be taken into account when constructing new buildings and designing city centres, for example by creating the possibility of using common green spaces, perhaps on rooftops or in abandoned neighbourhoods.
Our increased ecological sensitivity will make it possible to renovate the buildings in accordance with an energetic requalification and thus promote the installation of photovoltaic systems, the construction of large parking lots with charging stations for electric cars and heating systems that guarantee the protection of the environment.
Moreover, thanks to the positive results obtained through Smart Working, more and more companies will continue this way of working and possibly do without large offices. Commercial buildings could be converted into recreational and leisure areas where the new health regulations can be met.
On the other hand, the private home, which will retain its value and play an even more important role and become the basis for a safe life, will have to be designed to provide a quiet, secluded and transformable space that can also be used as a workplace.
According to the Federal Office for Spatial Development urban settlement areas, which also include new buildings, railway lines and roads, are about 43% and have recorded a rapid increase in recent years that has even exceeded population growth.
This should not be underestimated, because although land use in Switzerland shows a good relationship between nature and settlement areas, it is necessary to reduce this growth. Important recreational and green spaces must be returned to the population.
Let us not forget that man, as a “social being”, must live together with his fellow human beings. It is therefore everyone’s goal to work towards making urban areas increasingly sustainable and ecological, starting with housing.