Urban planning after the Coronavirus

Published by Basilio on

The recent epidemic of COVID-19 has changed forever the way of seeing the world of millions of people, it is a crisis that marks the end of an era. The need to isolate themselves to contain the epidemic has accelerated the expansion of the digital job offer. The relocation of the job offer to telework will have a direct consequence on the choice of residence. Urbanism after the Coronavirus is a reflection on how the way of life of our society can evolve after the epidemic. And since the Architecture is a physical expression of our society, will change with this one.

Adahuesca pueblo en el Somontano, Aragón
Adahuesca pueblo en el Somontano, Aragón

Today's society tends to concentrate in overpopulated areas. Which monopolize the labor supply and resources, while the rural environment can hardly provide employment. Large cities offer greater job prospects and opportunities, with job shortages in rural areas the main reason for their depopulation.

The vulnerability of overcrowded areas.

The big problem is that the way of life of big cities like Madrid, Barcelona or London is oriented to living away from home. Most of the population resides in houses with a minimum size due to the high value of the land in these cities. In fact, in the case of Spain, the supply of housing is so scarce that it is usual for a rental of a two-bedroom house to consume the average salary of a worker. Precisely in these large cities is where the epidemic is priming, creating a distressing situation for people who must endure isolation in their homes.

Vista de BarcelonaArquitectura para luchar contra el Coronavirus
View of Barcelona from Montjuic

According the Basic study of the housing situation and residential demand in the Municipality of Madrid, carried out by the sociologist José Luis Zarraga, the useful surface of the majority of the houses studied corresponds to the 60-79 m² fork. (Page 35, volume IV)

The report, which includes the conclusions of more than 6,300 household surveys, about 300 per district. The state of the homes influences how the Coronavirus crisis is faced, being yet another factor of inequality. The humblest sectors of society are those with the smallest dwellings and with the worst conditions to spend long periods of time without leaving. While the sectors with the most resources have homes with more space and more resources to cope with the crisis.

In short, overcrowded conditions are one of the main causes of the rapid expansion of the epidemic in large cities.

Telecommuting

On the other hand, the need to avoid social contact to control the epidemic has accelerated the implantation of telework and distance training. The definitive implementation of the digitization of office work opens a future in which job opportunities are opened that were previously only found in large cities. Likewise, the new telecommunications network 5g, which will expand the current bandwidth by ten times, allowing the implementation of internet of things. Allowing new interconnection functionalities such as monitoring and controlling the machinery of a factory remotely and without latency. This situation will multiply the virual jobs exponentially.

The repopulation of rural areas

This accumulation of circumstances can help revitalize the currently declining rural population centers. The expansion of a fully digital job offer will allow you to live away from big cities. Giving the economies of rural areas more diversity, currently being anchored to the primary sector and seasonal tourism in some cases. On the other hand, the low price of land allows us to have more spacious and comfortable homes with less economic resources.

In short, the demographic recovery of the depopulated Spain It opens as an opportunity with the generalization of digital work. Being also an opportunity for the recovery of architectural heritage abandoned by depopulation.

Population density in Spain by municipalities.

Alquézar pueblo del Somontano en AragónArquitectura para luchar contra el Coronavirus
Alquézar pueblo del Somontano en Aragón