Re-visioning Sustainable Urban Housing in 2020: the year of perfect vision

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Civilization?s vantage point has shifted with advances in technology from an eye-level view of the horizon to a bird?s eye view from a plane, to a planet-wide view from space. This relatively new global view is now the cultural perspective and embraces the holistic view of the biosphere as a large, interconnected, complex habitat that is subject to ever increasing anthropogenic pressures. The newly realized global perspective and realizations of global scale manmade impacts has added the concept of sustainability to the architectural realm. Architectural design issues of sustainability are inherently multi-scale, interconnected, and complex; and can not be resolved with western reductionist science alone. The future of sustainable urban housing will be a nonlinear outcome resulting from the rebalance of culture, technology and economy interacting with choice in our society. The architecture of urban housing has a potential role to play in moving that rebalance point. This thesis will attempt to put on stage a context for urban housing in Western society that is transitioning towards sustainability in 2020, the year of perfect vision.