Ways that innovation in design is making city dwelling easier


Living in a city can be tough – the lack of fresh air can lead to mental and physical health problems. City planners try to make the spaces as green as possible to emulate the fresh country air, by planning parks and open spaces, or even building rooftop gardens.

There are also advances in transport, making getting from A to B easier, as we all know how busy city traffic can be at rush hour. From Uber’s private hire service to self-driving cars, there are many technological advances to make getting around a big city easier and parents with children understand the need to stay on top of things.

For those who are new to living in the big city, there are mobile apps which can help you feel like you’ve lived there forever. Google maps has walking directions which can be read to you through your headphones, meaning you won’t have to keep stopping to pull out your phone. It can also show you various routes to get from A to B, so you can choose the best for you.

It has even been mentioned that cities could become ‘smart’, meaning we could interact with them. One app which has already become successful is NYC’s ‘Don’t flush me’, which tells users when they shouldn’t flush – such as heavy rain causes sewers to overflow.

Even more advanced than this is Rio’s control room, where cameras all over the city collect and send data. This allows officials to monitor pollution and weather conditions for example. These will allow trends and patterns to be observed and predicted, meaning we can better prepare for the future.

The data collected by these ‘smart cities’ is available online, meaning residents can also monitor their city’s status. However, with this there is the worry that the data and the technology used to obtain it, could fall into the wrong hands.