Self-navigating cars, small streets and a city crawling with information is architect Jurgen Mayer H.'s winning idea for Audi's Urban Future Award, announced this week at the Architecture Biennale in Venice, Italy. Audi's Urban Future competition tapped six firms—also included were Alison Brooks Architects, BIG, Diller Scofidio + Renfro, Cloud 9 and Standardarchitecture—to imagine mobility and urbanism in the city of 2030. The winning concept, by J. Mayer H. Architects focused on a future where navigating an urban environment is no longer the headache-inducing, traffic-snarling norm—and driving will actually be an entirely pleasant experience.
In 2030, says Mayer H., cars will be hybrid mobility devices which drive themselves. To maximize efficiency, we'll share these vehicles, which will pick up and drop off passengers as effortlessly as a taxi. And since drivers will not have to worry themselves with such silly things as safety and directions, the car itself can become an interactive, immersive experience.
Think of it like Ford's integrated dash technology Sync, merged with your iPhone's favorite augmented reality app, blown up across the entire windshield. Information about historic architecture, real estate values, or local amenities can be easily accessed to help passengers learn more about their cities.
Due to the blissful flow of vehicles that can drop passengers off and drive themselves to their next destination, there will also be no more need for parking spaces. Thus, says Mayer H., once-invaded pedestrian areas will regain their lost space from cars. Those super-narrow streets with ultra-wide sidewalks will become a reality. Signage, which only exists to help guide humans through busy streets, will no longer be needed, de-cluttering the urban environment.
J. Mayer H. is known for its trippy computer generated forms and experimental materials. Check out more of their work here.