Forward-Thinking Typologies

New spatial configurations for how we live, work, and play



Our world is going through radical changes and every building type needs to be reconsidered given current social, cultural, and economic needs. Trends may come and go, but we seek solutions to the ways we live, work, play, commute, and shop that will be as relevant now as they are in the decades to come.


As one of Bloomberg’s “Top 100 Business Innovators,” HWKN combines years of experience with technologically informed design thinking to find novel building typologies that anticipate the complex needs and challenges of the future. We consider everything from new work environments to shared apartments with calibrated amenities. The goal is to find new organizational and operational principles that maximize the value for the user and the developer. 


To develop our new residential brand FLX LIVE, we built on 10 years of residential design experience— amounting to thousands of units—and our extensive research on the impact design can have on improving the aging process. From this work, we have created an innovative “double-studio” apartment type that allows renters to achieve a workable balance between cost-of-living, space-sharing, and community experiences. After benchmarking this unit-type against 50 alternative layouts, the new FLX apartment typology was chosen because of its ability to encourage intergenerational living, affordability, and developer flexibility. 


We believe that updating typologies helps future-proof new real-estate development and creates subsequent demand for these properties.


Our Forward-Thinking Typologies experience includes:


  • FLX Work (New flexible and customizable office-building typology)
  • WeLive (The second generation of co-living)
  • Gravity 2.0 (First communal living development in Ohio)


Additional Scope:

Opportunity Mapping

Unforgettable Buildings