November 3, 2017
Los Angeles, CA, USA

Building on the themes of the AERIAL FUTURES: Leading Edge Symposium, these three concurrent think tanks, hosted by our academic partners, brought participants into discussion of technology, surveillance and the passenger experience. 

November 3, 2017
University of California, Los Angeles

Aerial Futures, Seamless Transitions anticipated the metamorphosis of mobility devices, infrastructure, and way finding to interrogate the future of arrivals and departures in the ground-based infrastructure airfields. This think tank responded to recent advances in autonomous vehicle design as well as the coming wave of specialized vehicles and systems, which will define the future of access to assess their impact on the planning of future airports. 

Autonomous mobility devices will enable a reassessment of the spatial precepts of airfields and their relationship to the surrounding urban landscape, with a concurrent compression of the footprint required by rental, passenger, and service parking. Participants speculated on how these changes may enhance the passenger experience by the creation of specialized baggage handling, arrival and departure devices and the like, based on developing transportation technology and advances in materials handling to create a system of hand-offs devoted to an uninterrupted arrival experience.


Chair: Craig Hodgetts

Craig Hodgetts, Principal and Co-Founder of Hodgetts + Fung Design and Architecture, is an internationally recognized architect known for his imaginative synthesis of architecture, arts and technology. With a broad ranging background in automotive design, theater, and architecture grounded by Mid-Western traditions, Hodgetts brings dramatic concepts to life by means of an uncompromising application of constructive methodology. He has been called upon to produce full-scale architectural projects, master plans, urban designs, exhibition installations, entertainment venues, and industrial products. Creative Director of Hodgetts + Fung, Craig is known for employing an imaginative weave of high technology and storytelling, contemporary ideology, information culture and evolving lifestyles. 

Aerial Futures, Seamless Transitions was hosted by UCLA Architecture & Urban Design and supported by Hyperloop One


November 3, 2017

Aerial Futures, Ubiquitous Perception responded to evolving technology in artificial intelligence, machine vision and augmented reality, to speculate on the future of airport architecture. The think tank envisioned a near future, in which the ability to precisely locate and identify every traveler from curb to gate will influence the organizational, formal and experiential nature of architecture.

Ubiquitous computing allows us to re-territorialize the primary hierarchies of curbside, security, and gateside areas and the proportional real-estate they embody. The primary focus will be to re-imagine security methods and passenger experience, through the use of augmented reality. Participants considered how the creation of 3D digital media on a per-traveler basis can transform retail, layovers, and way finding; and discussed costs and benefits of voluntarily enacting this form of ubiquitous panopticon from both the traveler and operators. 

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Chair: M. Casey Rehm

Casey Rehm is a designer and algorithmic consultant whose firm Kinch is based in Los Angeles. In addition to his practice he is a full time faculty member at SCI-Arc.  He received a MSAAD from Columbia University in 2009 and his BArch from Carnegie Mellon University in 2005. He has over 12 years of architectural experience, working for firms in New York, Los Angeles, Berlin, and London. In addition to his professional experience, Casey has been a full time faculty member at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, assisted studios at the University of Pennsylvania, and the Pratt Institute. Currently he teaches graduate design studios and seminars in programming, interactive media and robotics in design.

Aerial Futures, Ubiquitous Perception was hosted by SCI-Arc. 



November 3, 2017
University of California, Berkeley

Time and space in airports are often perceived as more of an obstacle than an enjoyable experience. Examining traveling publics and terminal spaces, this workshop looked at diverse passenger experiences of waiting, eating, shopping and other activities that might take place.  

Participants in Aerial Futures, Time & Space at the Terminal visited a popular retail location in downtown LA to conduct basic fieldwork that will inform a forthcoming discussion. The think tank diagramed the passenger experience, considering the role of time in the design of interior airport spaces. The group established a conceptual framework for user groups, relative to their experience waiting in contained retail environments, and the impact this has on their behavior.

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Chair: Dr. Margaret Crawford

Margaret Crawford is Professor of Architecture at UC Berkeley, teaching courses in the history and theory of architecture, urbanism and urban history and studios focusing on small-scale urbanity. Her research focuses on the evolution, uses and meanings of urban space. She has written and edited several books including Building the Workingman’s Paradise: The Design of American Company TownsThe Car and the City: The Automobile, the Built Environment and Daily Urban Life and Everyday Urbanism, and has published numerous articles on shopping malls, public space, and other issues in the American built environment, recently investigated the rapid physical and social changes in China’s Pearl River Delta.

Aerial Futures, Time & Space at the Terminal was hosted by UC Berkeley College of Environmental Design and supported by Westfield




Thanks to the generous sponsorship of our donors, 
this think tank was offered free of charge.