What is urban architecture you ask? Urban architecture enterprises of buildings made for an urban setting. Design considerations for these setting include, the practicalities of life, housing and workplace capacities, the harmony between form and function and energy-efficient design.
Architecture is like any artform in that it sees and follows trends. With changes affecting where and how people work, as well as the world's depleting environment, the demands of tenants and homeowners are changing, and architects must ensure that their designs address those demands. For instance, advances in communications have made it possible for people to live and work in the same place.
As a result, more and more buildings that include shops, restaurants, and services in their foyers are being developed. Similarly, with so much pressure and pollution threatening the well-being of the planet, many companies and individuals have tried to build sustainable features into their properties and make use of renewable energy. This may mean including solar panels on a home, or it might mean building a garden on the roof of an office tower.
An example of new sustainable housing developments, is that being built in Toronto's Regent Park. This 12-storey, 85-unit co-operative seeks to provide an alternative to the majority of condominium towers going up in the city, made mostly of glass. Most units have private terraces, hallways are naturally lit, and the roof is completely covered in grass.
Although we have described some of the most common demands of urban architecture, it can also refer to any kind of innovative design. In Rotterdam for instance a market was built in the shape of a tunnel. Designed by MVRDV and developed by Provast, the development of the market made waves in the city and the world of urban architecture. The halls of the market are covered with LCD screens playing fruit and vegetable images. The arches of the market are ten stories high and furnished of 228 apartments available for rent or purchase.
One of the greatest examples of innovative and environmentally friendly architecture is Mangal City. Mangal City is a series of futuristic skyscrapers built in London. They are inspired by the complex ecosystem created by the mangrove tree. The skyscrapers consisting of modular pod capsules which shift through the day to adapt to environmental and contextual conditions.
Architecture is one of the most exciting parts about a city. It's always interesting to visit a new place and see the style of buildings that make it up. Of course, for every urban building that's built there are many shade structures, environmentally friendly canopies, and pow wows that people can easily add on to the outside of their homes, and office towers and schools can put in their courtyards.