BIG and UNStudio’s investment in co-working platform SpaceForm signals a tide-change in architectural practice

by DailyBriefers
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SpaceForm screenshot. All images courtesy of Squint/Opera, UNStudio & BIG

SpaceForm screenshot. All images courtesy of Squint/Opera, UNStudio & BIG

BIG is making a huge investment along with partners UNStudio and Squint/Opera in a new virtual platform that responds to the demands of the post-pandemic world with a digital presentation tool aimed at increasing effective collaboration on and reducing the carbon footprint of future projects across the world.

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Video courtesy of Squint/Opera, UNStudio & BIG

The new project, called SpaceForm, promises to drastically reduce costs of project development by offering users the ability to present 3D models with up to 100 co-workers in real-time, saving resources with its multi-device ability to connect with widely-used visualization software like Rhino, Rivet, Sketchup, and Unreal seamlessly. 

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, firms had been mostly expanding their footprints, growing a web of connections between offices that has become obsolete in the minds of some thanks to the changes caused by the pandemic. Now, with the onset of virtual workspace becoming all the more apparent, BIG has coupled with UNStudio and creative digital designers Squint/Opera to develop the platform based on a prototype first conceived in 2018 with the help of funding from video game producer Epic Games’ seed-funder initiative Epic MegaGrant.

The ability to work with so many disparate people so intimately is one reason BIG founder Bjarke Ingels is so interested in its potential. 

“In the future, every physical object will be connected to one another, sensing each other and everything in between. For every physical object, there will be a digital twin. For every physical space, a virtual space,” Ingels said in a statement. “SpaceForm is the augmented creative collaborative environment of the future which will allow an instantaneous confluence of actual and imagined realities — the present and the future fusing in our augmented sense of reality.”

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