Future Urban Habitation Symposium 2019

29 Jan 2019 - 30 Jan 2019 9.30AM to 6.00PM National Design Centre, Auditorium, Level 2, 111 Middle Road, Singapore 188969

According to a prognosis by the United Nations, in 2050 two-thirds of humanity will be living in cities worldwide. With this urban growth, high-rise housing on a large scale will again be a ubiquitous response to give shelter to the ever-growing urban populations. This process will necessarily impact high-rise typology, and against the backdrop of an increasing population density it will be ever more essential to investigate how design strategies for high-rise buildings can be rethought to facilitate sustainable built environments, inclusive communities and adaptiveness to the demographic dynamics of changing societies.

Emerging with these challenges, Asian metropolises like Singapore will again become laboratories for future urban habitation – setting an example on how forward-looking strategies for housing applied on large scale will have a transformative power for the urban societies of the future.
The symposium intends to cater interdisciplinary debates between experts from various fields. The symposium will bring together.

  • Experts and practitioners from social science and services
  • Policy makers and stakeholders
  • Local and international architects of innovative housing projects
  • Design researchers working on housing typology, generative design, big data applications, evidence-based climatic performance and construction & materiality

The symposium will be an opportunity to jointly reflect about a future of urban living, to collaborate on and to synthesize forward-looking concepts. Envisioning both social and architectural concepts and ideas could contribute to innovative solutions and strategies for sustainable and liveable urban dwelling models for the future. We hope that these will translate into perspectives and propositions illustrating potential design objectives for a hypothetical Newtown of the future.

It is also hoped that discussing beyond thematic and professional silos will help to initiate multi-disciplinary networks for future collaboration.


Four intersecting thematic frameworks will be discussed in the symposium:

High-Dense Typologies For Building Community

With ongoing and intensifying urban growth, high-rise housing on a large scale will again be a ubiquitous response to give shelter to the ever-growing urban populations. As high-rise building types will consequently emerge to be larger, higher and accommodating more residents than ever before, designers will have to imagine a new social aesthetic of vertical communality. Integrative models of urban living will be discussed, that aim to support liveable urban communities and to foster social cohesion and sense of belonging.

Inclusive Urbanism

Concepts for future public housing will also be discussed as an urbanistic theme, to better understand the dependencies and mutual potentials evolving between the urban domain and innovative forms of habitation. How will the future of urban territories be conceptualized and designed to accommodate densifying and diversifying urban communities, and to cater inclusive and sustainable collective living? How can the housing environment be more empowering for ground-up initiatives and place-making and enabling active communities?

Adaptable And Responsive Habitation

At the same time, urban societies of the future will face significant demographic shifts; with increasing demands by ageing populations, diversifying forms of habitation and lifecycles that are less consistent than before. Participants will debate, how flexibility-driven design approaches could smoothly respond to changing demands, and cater the diversifying needs of tenants during both the launch- and service life-time of buildings.
They will also discuss how social practices for ageing-in-place and for intergenerational co-existence could be accommodated, and how integrative programs can cater for inclusive sustainable societies.

New Tools, New Approaches

The panels will highlight the expanded opportunities given by new forms of knowledge, techniques and design tools to respond to future challenges. The application of generative design tools, the capabilities to analyse the climatic and social performance of designs and their contexts, and the expertise on innovative building techniques and materials offer a whole set of potential answers that help to inform and inspire an environmentally, socially and economically more resilient built environment.

More details can be found on ASD website.