Opinion POST PANDEMIC: THE FUTURE OF CONTEMPORARY DESIGN Design consultant on how " the most unsettling and far-reaching" COVID-19 pandemic is reshaping work culture and how different industries work. Esra Lemmens H ome design will have to change in the future with good developers and vision, even in a densely populated place. The world, especially designers, can learn a lot from the remarkable example of Hong Kong. However, they still need to work more on ventilation and building airy homes. The infrastructure of a city is a reflection of the government's priorities and shows what they care about. It's a physical manifestation of their ideas, concepts, and what they want to provide to the people. For example, in Singapore, the government cares about the spaces remote workers will need high-speed broadband. Stable, high-speed internet is a pre-requisite for work-from-home. It is also essential to focus on things that you usually touch and even the use of space. Ergonomics will become important more than ever before. You may not want to splurge on an elegant sofa or furniture pieces that occupy wider spaces if you live in a small home. Moreover, designers will need to focus on household items and furniture, which can perform both form and function. In this uncertain environment of the coronavirus outbreak, the home has become humans' last refuge, especially for those who are living under quarantine. The comfort of being at and working from home, wasting time instead of money, has led people away from their addiction to material things and into a realm of sharing, caring and making. It has challenged our concepts of wellness, personal space, sustainability, and productivity. This pandemic has pushed the companies to initiate working virtually. However, work-from-home is not a piece of cake; it may not be as comforting as it may seem. Companies will demand spaces to operate the whole mechanism from home. As a designer, you will have to carve out spaces for clients that are not just a selling point. Instead, the focus will be on a workspace with a live-work environment. To make this happen, what you will need is a flexible environment, a shapeshifting home, and furniture that is multifunctional. Plus, you also have to consider fundamentals, such as privacy and comfort, lighting, proper ventilation, and a small outdoor space. To keep up with the changing dynamics, you will need a boost in technology. For instance, How urbanisation and density will develop Do you know by 2050, more than 70 per cent of the world population will live in urban cities? Urbanisation is taking place faster in Asia compared to other regions; it comes as no surprise as 21 of the 30 largest cities of the world are in this part of the world. While cities are considered as cradles of collective creativity, the Coronavirus has forced the world to rethink its idea of urbanization and density. While the trend of urbanization will continue to grow in Asia, the COVID-19 crisis will change the function of cities. People may look to improve ventilation, a way to interact with sunlight and greenery, and more outdoor areas in their homes. These demands are achievable Esra Lemmens 12 commercialinteriordesign.com July 2020
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