Is “Crisis Architecture” the Way of the Future" - architecture and design

Is “Crisis Architecture” the Way of the Future"



Cultural zeitgeists have a way of influencing architecture and design. It’s a trend that has lasted centuries and continues to evolve today. Unfortunately, the prevalence of mass shootings, public violence, and terrorist threats is quickly becoming the catalyst for yet another architectural movement — one that national security site War on the Rocks is labeling “crisis architecture.”

Even the earliest building blueprints included considerations for what was happening in the world at the time. For example, forts like Brimstone Hill Fortress on the Caribbean Island of St. Kitts were intentionally placed on higher ground so as to provide their occupants with optimal views of approaching invaders. Even in the medieval age of castles, monarchs included lookout towers, moats, and other seemingly impenetrable lines of defense to serve specific purposes. Later, the idea of urban safety influenced designs for municipal buildings and residential housing alike. Today we have a different kind of enemy to protect against: individuals who perpetrate mass shootings or other types of terror attacks. As a result of these attacks, we’re already seeing huge changes in urban planning. This encompasses infrastructure to mitigate attacks on high-rise buildings from car and other streetside bombs. It also entails putting barriers up around buildings and monuments. However, these steps do little to protect against the damage one might cause once they’re inside...
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