Urban centres in sub-urban districts and suburban townships have evolved from their original purpose of providing local level services to the surrounding regions, connected mainly by road. The shop-lot typology alone can not serve the increasingly complex roles and functions, and the exchange of people and information that occur on daily basis. Emerging from this change and demand certain ideas and approach to urban planning and design, architecture and engineering are becoming prevalent:
• Transportation and mobility integration
• Connectedness of the community
• Architecture-public domain-infrastructure integration
• Design intelligence and smart technologies
As transport-oriented-development become the hub, design parameters need to cover integration with vehicular network and parking design strategy to avoid the loss of urban character. Personal mobility solutions also become relevant in addressing the issues of traffic congestion and sustainability - it is a new approach that mediates between public transport and cars that is environmentally sensitive and socially sustainable. As people transit through the hub, between homes - workplaces - shops, the journey is placed under the spotlight in its connectedness, quality of experience, amenity and facility - such as shops, services, recreation, safety, security, convenience, practicality, handling cross-section of users, environmentally friendly design, quality/character of public domain, value to community building, placemaking potential, etc. The role of architecture is further challenged by the necessity to answer the needs to integrate and connect using new and hybrid typologies - last millennium paradigm shift in design for cars needs an up-shift to meet a new paradigm of public transport, autonomous vehicles and personal mobility devices - that would change spatial layout and visual experience of space due to different speeds of travel within and across buildings. This compels the incorporation of intelligent and adaptive design strategies and the use of smart technologies to serve the built environment rather than to be dictated by it conversely. Architecture will need to be seamless and all-encompassing to integrate the public domain and infrastructure to optimise land use and efficiency, and critically to propound the importance of placemaking for the people and the value of the public domain as the common denominator of the city.
A common typology has been evolving on the drawing board - a 'link' that is based on a flexible linear structure that integrates a multitude of services, predominantly used for movement of people, activated by activities at key nodes while drawing closer the relationships between inside and outside. It functions on ground plane at the most rudimentary level, but key to its versatility is its transmutability to flex up and down vertically and twist laterally - for multilevel, multi-block connectivity - opening up new levels of accessibility and flexibility when coupled with personal mobility solutions within an architectural spatial configuration.
All above Description by: Ar Tang Hsiao Seak
Design Architects: Garis Architects S/B
(Ar Tang Hsiao Seak / Ar Ngu Ngie Woon)
Composed by: Albert Chua