UNStudio and BIG invest in Virtual Design Platform SpaceForm

July 13, 2021

UNStudio and Bjarke Ingels Group have partnered up with Squint/Opera to develop SpaceForm, a virtual, cloud-based platform that facilitates design, review and collaboration processes for architects and developers. The new virtual workspace explicitly developed for the architecture and construction industry aims to fill a gap by creating a viable and sustainable way of collaborating and designing remotely across global teams, thus reducing the need for travel.

Described by UNStudio founder Ben van Berkel as “the first online platform that allows for immersive design reviews with clients”, SpaceForm uses gaming technology similar to Fortnite to create a 3D multi-user platform for presenting designs and digital twin data in real-time. The platform’s prototype was developed in 2018 by the creative studio specialized in digital media Squint/Opera and has subsequently been improved based on the feedback of architects and designers. Building on the extensive collaboration experience of UNStudio and BIG, the workspace helps design teams and stakeholders communicate more effectively, improving the decision-making process.

The use of immersive, real-time gaming technology in the built environment is exciting as it opens up new ways to explore and engage with the unbuilt world. Real-time environments allow people to feel what a space might be like, when you can explore that space with your team and clients, together, on any platform - this is a game-changer. The recent shift in remote working has presented new opportunities, as the right platforms will converge to reduce the need for so much business travel - SpaceForm wants to drive that shift - Jan-Maarten Heuff, Squint/Opera Director and SpaceForm CEO.

SpaceForm simulates 3D environments for collaborative reviews while facilitating immersive experiences of the architecture projects. The platform supports data sharing from several of the most used 3D software and allows the visualization of digital twins and urban data, with the scope of improving the communication of complex solutions among stakeholders. Bjarke Ingels synthesize the capabilities of the latest SpaceForm prototype as “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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