Arena builders

Designers, will your next big break be in the metaverse?

With dozens of platforms now offering land in these new digital realms and brands and organizations rushing to stake their claim, metaverse real estate sales topped half a billion dollars last year. In addition to designing virtual homes, shops, offices, schools, galleries and event venues, virtual space planning and digital furniture and finishes are design services that continue to be in high demand. .

Looking ahead, “where the Metaverse will really excel will be in experiences and services, whether it’s education, entertainment, or going to the bank,” Singaby notes. “Maybe you can get into a DMV metaverse, which could be improved for sure.” Just like in the built world, the types of virtual spaces people want to go to spend time in will be functional, enjoyable, and human-centric. As creators of spatial experiences, architects and designers have much to offer. “We’re thinking about a type of interaction that has unlimited potential, and it’s a potential that’s pretty undefined right now,” observes Lane of Digby. “So when you’re working in an industry that’s literally designed to design things, there’s an incredibly exciting opportunity there.”

For all the enticing possibilities the metaverse offers to design professionals and the clients they work with, this emerging technology, like all new technologies, also brings with it a series of larger problems. Among them are the accessibility, diversity, sustainability, safety and security of current and future virtual environments. For designers, the promise (and responsibility) of building a better parallel world is not to carry over the inequalities and problems that plague us in the world today.