Where We Live Now

Where We Live Now explores the historical, political, and socioeconomic forces that shape our homes and communities.

Affording America: Representative Ilhan Omar Wants Homes for All
Affording America: Representative Ilhan Omar Wants Homes for All
The Minnesota congressperson thinks the federal government should guarantee a place to live for every American.
How to Build an Affordable America
There are as many solutions to the country’s housing crisis as there are causes. We need them all.
Is a Sustainable Suburbia Still Possible Post-Pandemic?
In 2010, Dwell took a look at four radical plans to reshape and retrofit spaces outside of our cities.
How Will Architecture Merge the Digital and Physical Worlds?
How Will Architecture Merge the Digital and Physical Worlds?
Artificial intelligence is not only changing how we design buildings—it’s also influencing how buildings shape our behavior.
We May Already Have the Technology to Survive a Climate Crisis—We’ve Just Been Ignoring It
In her book “Lo—TEK: Design by Radical Indigenism,” designer and activist Julia Watson urges us to use millennia-old knowledge to build a world in symbiosis with nature.
Here’s What They Don’t Tell You About Living in a Tiny House
The micro home movement paints a rosy picture of financial freedom, simplicity, and self-determination—but going small comes with its own set of challenges.
A State-by-State Guide to Housing Measures on the 2020 Ballot
These initiatives on state ballots will decide questions about rent control, property tax, and urban development.
Going Circular Is the New Green—Here’s How Home Goods Companies Are Closing the Loop
From IKEA to Emeco, a growing number of businesses are slashing waste by putting it straight back into production.
Should We Keep Living in Disaster-Prone Areas?
After a year of ecological calamity, experts wrestle with whether or not we should rebuild in risky areas—and who will pay for it if we do.
To Combat Raging Wildfires, California Turns to Native American Knowledge
Decades of fire suppression have contributed to increasingly destructive infernos. Now, the U.S. Forest Service is learning from Indigenous fire science to restore balance to the...
The Pendleton Problem: When Does Cultural Appreciation Tip Into Appropriation?
The Pendleton Problem: When Does Cultural Appreciation Tip Into Appropriation?
Designers weigh in on the fine line that divides the two when it comes to home decor.
Is the Pandemic Priming Neighborhoods for a New Wave of Gentrification?
Evictions, foreclosures, and city dwellers seeking greener pastures may exacerbate an already precarious housing market.
A New Book Celebrates a Texas Midcentury Gem—and the Trailblazing Architect Who Designed It
In 1952, John Saunders Chase became the first African American to graduate with an architecture degree in Texas. When nobody would hire him, he built his own legacy anyway.
How Blockbusting and Real Estate Profiteers Cash In on Racial Tension
Scholars of housing segregation have described blockbusting as a tool of racial capitalism. Here’s what we can learn from the practice—and how to fight back.
In Times of Crisis, Hostile Architecture Poses a Bigger Threat Than Ever
The coronavirus and social upheaval are creating a new breeding ground for hostile design that’s even more insidious than the uninviting park bench.
Just How Inclusive Is Accessible Design?
The Americans with Disabilities Act was signed into law 30 years ago. Here’s what it achieved, and where it still falls short.
Why Now, More Than Ever, the ADU Is the Future of Home
Whether it serves as an investment, backyard office, or intergenerational housing, the accessory dwelling unit (ADU) has never made more sense.
What Do Monuments Mean to Us?
The recent takedowns of controversial statues call into question the meaning and permanence of monuments themselves.
A Conversation With L.A.’s Chief Design Officer Christopher Hawthorne
The city’s chief design officer explains why Los Angeles is America’s creative capital and what the mayor is doing to make housing more affordable.
21 Resources on Redlining’s Role in Cementing the American Wealth Gap
A decades-long housing policy that segregated U.S. cities still plagues Black communities today.
The Unsung Story of Eichler Homes and How They Helped Integrate American Neighborhoods
Joseph Eichler not only defined the middle-class home of the midcentury period, but also worked to dismantle racist housing policies.
Urban Planner and MacArthur “Genius” Emmanuel Pratt’s Vision for Chicago Is Radically Simple
Ideas like urban acupuncture and biofeedback belie the simplicity behind Sweet Water Foundation’s mission—to help folks in blighted neighborhoods reclaim their humanity.
Emmanuel Pratt Is Using “Urban Acupuncture” to Reclaim Neglected Chicago Neighborhoods
The MacArthur fellow and cofounder of the Sweet Water Foundation speaks about “regenerative design” and reclaiming the community.