Today, 55% of the world’s population live in cities, and this figure is projected to increase to 68% by 2050, according to the United Nations (UN). Asian cities are among the fastest-growing in the world, with the number of urban dwellers in South Asia likely to increase by between 250mn and 300mn by 2030.
How do you adapt real estate projects and infrastructure to build liveable cities to cope with the challenges of rapid urbanisation? How can technology help to reach this ambitious objective?
I’d like to explore 3 key ingredients for a ‘smart’ city:
Time is something all of us don’t get enough. The always-connected and instantly available mindset creates opportunities for new technologies to become available to us; allowing us to do more, yet with less time. Convenience becomes a key driver in design to decide what we need for our future infrastructures.
As urban population increases, planners and architects are looking for ways to shape and improve our cities. For example, the way we commute will change with developments becoming more efficient, compact and sustainable. The rise of green transportation around us improves the last mile design, making our cities more liveable.
Densification creates opportunities. Co sharing, consolidate resources, giving us more time for other things. New data, collected from technologies which we use to communicate and consume, on the other hand, allow us to make decisions in a proactive way. Allowing us to design and respond to our cities directly. Offices, malls, schools, health institutions, hotels and key real estate elements are becoming hybrids between one another, blurring the boundaries even more to make cities more interesting, in an intelligent way.
We also like to design our cities around the way we like to live. Our experiences can also become new drivers for developments and giving rise to a generation of new communities in our cities. A well connected community with little boundaries.
Cities are also becoming younger, particularly in China, with a large working middle class population of young, tech savy generation that demands efficient services and embraces a strong sharing and work culture.
Airports are becoming new city hubs. As cities expand, putting pressure on growing infrastructure, airports now become mini metropolis–aeropolis, giving rise to new opportunities for a place for work and entertainment.
SkyCity in Hong Kong International Airport will become a landmark entertainment hub for the city, while also adding value to the 70 million travellers using the airport and attracting local visitors.
A catalyst to make cities more convenient and liveable, the iconic Beijing Daxing International Airport Commercial Terminal is another highly anticipated airport development. Due to open in 2019, its innovative design houses a hybrid of hospitality, work and retail component. This space becomes a new anchor hub for new offices, catalysing the Daxing community located on the south of the 6th ring road in Beijing.
“The making of liveable cities is about connecting, activating and transforming places for people and environments to enrich quality of life.”