Home design is influenced by many things, but as this Dwell article discusses, the U.S. population that is sheltering in place has had more time to consider the impact design has on their daily life. Some architects believe that might change future demand, home features and amenities.
Working from his New York base, Riehm adds, "In the process of being sequestered for such a long period of time, clients and designers will think anew about making environments that are comforting, efficient, and safe. Over the last few decades, with more days on airplanes, nights in hotels, and meals on the go, home for many people had become a place to drop your bags and sleep a few nights a week. If anything, this pandemic has forced a widespread consideration of domestic environments."
This pervasive hunkering down at home has resulted in New York architects focusing on a wide range of design issues stressing self-sufficiency, flexibility, sustainability, health, wellness, and hygiene—along with a renewed interest in public versus private space.
Dutch-born architect Winka Dubbeldam, founder and principal of her SoHo-based firm Archi-Tectonics, is currently working from a cottage on Eastern Long Island and projects an increase of home offices, easy-to-maintain surfaces, and the use of HEPA filters while Frederick Tang, principal of his namesake Brooklyn firm, underscores the importance of infrastructure and HVAC technologies. "Air filtration systems are often an afterthought, but I think homeowners will become experts on topics like HEPA filters and fresh air intake," says Tang.
"This crisis also underscores the importance of investing in sustainable and resilient infrastructure," says Riehm, citing a potential increase in built-in amenities including more pantry space and storage. He also stresses a continued reliance on large-scale appliances and an intensified dependency on Internet connection.