The Future of Cities and Transportation Post COVID-19

The Future of Cities and Transportation Post COVID-19

Title: The Future of Cities and Transportation Post COVID-19
Year created: 2021
Technique: Digital illustration using Adobe Illustration

Author’s details: 
Group: Mpumelelo Nyuswa & Nosandi Khanyile
Department of Visual Communication Design: Interior Design Programme (3rdYear)


Category 2: Post COVID-19 (Future Imaginings)

In the future, cities need to consider more than sustainable materials and Technology. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, designers should primarily consider the safety and health of people–primarily in future city design. For our project submission, we have proposed a future Utopian city in the form of a digital collage as well as the design of a transport node located within this city.

Usually, when we think of how cities will look in the next decade, we have extravagant and unrealistic ideas. We only think about possible technological advancements and not about what we need as a society.TheCOVID-19 pandemic has limited physical human interactions. Therefore, cities should be designed around these limitations.

The collage shows a future Utopian city that is inspired by the concept of Afro futurism. Crumpton (2018) describes Afrofuturism as an aesthetic overlap of historical and scientific philosophies and technology of African culture. It all starts with embracing Africa in all its beauty, rich culture, and imperfections to spark creativity in conjunction with technology. The city also has bicycle lanes –essential for reducing the use of public transportation. This is even more convenient when facilities are available within a 15-minuteradiushence we further propose the 15 minute neighbourhood.

Afrofuturism in architecture can be a way to change the Western perspective of African design. It is a way of portraying how historic African culture can be referenced in modern design. This acts as a link between cities and rural areas and could be a means of bringing communities together. The train in the collage is as an extension of that metaphor.

The transport node that we have designed is a bus stop. It is designed with the intention to make the user feel like they’re outside as people no longer feel comfortable in confined spaces. This is achieved by incorporating a glass
façade with plants. A plant-inspired design encourages a healthier lifestyle, sustainability, and reduces the cities’ impact on the planet.
In order to encourage social distancing restrictions, the bus stop has individual seating for its users to keep close contact at a minimum. Touchless technology has contributed positively towards mitigating the spread so essentially the node features hand sanitisers with motion sensors.
Numerous things can be improved in cities but society needs cleaner and safer environments. There is also a need for a bold action plan to make social distancing easier in both our cities and the way we travel while keeping the economy and sustainability in mind.

October 11, 2021

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