Urban Design

Designing Communities for Wildfire Resilience

As architects and urban designers, we see the threat of wildfires as intrinsically connected with community planning, design, and policy decisions. With a focus on the challenges ahead for California, this document puts forward best-practice design guidelines for settlement patterns, urban design strategies, and architectural considerations that could strengthen resilience against wildfire.

Digital Design, Master Planning, Partnerships

Master Planning and Space Architecture for a Moon Village

In partnership with the European Space Agency and faculty at MIT, SOM is engaged in a collaborative endeavor to design and master plan the first full-time human settlement on the Moon. Presented at the 70th International Astronautical Congress, this paper outlines the goals and summarizes the key design, planning, and engineering considerations.

Digital Design, Parametric Design, Tall Buildings

Building on the Legacy of Technological and Architectural Innovation

In this article published in "The Changing Shape of Architecture: Further Cases of Integrating Research and Design in Practice" (Routledge, 2019), Neil Katz and Daniel Cashen explain the history of the firm and its output in the context of its technological advancements and social collaborations.

Master Planning, Sustainability, Urban Design

The Hong Kong Water Line: A Recreation and Conservation Vision for Hong Kong Island

The Hong Kong Water Line project, a research-based proposal by SOM's Hong Kong office, introduces the concept of a new multipurpose trail around the entirety of Hong Kong Island. The proposal seeks to enhance coastal access, provide a sustainable transportation corridor, and offer a framework for marine conservation.

Structural Engineering

Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport: Integrated Terminal Building

The new Integrated Terminal Building at Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport combines international and domestic operations at one of the busiest airports in India. The 410,000-square-meter building, being constructed at the site of the existing terminal, will achieve a capacity of 40 million passengers per annum upon completion in 2014. This paper looks at the structural innovations incorporated into the design of the Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport's Integrated Terminal Building.

Energy, Sustainability

Harnessing Nature

A new office complex on the outskirts of Hyderabad, India, harnesses energy from an abundant resource in the country that many architectural solutions overlook — the sun. This paper discusses how SOM's design manages to meet two seemingly conflicting objectives: maximizing shading while using daylight as an energy source.


Analemma Skylight

In a collaborative project with artist James Turrell, our team, working with astronomer Dick Walker, designed a skylight that would admit a spot of light into the building for a specified period each day of the year. This paper describes the project, from inception to completion.