Waypoint: Mars

What would Martian Architecture be like?

GroupmatesGoi Yong Chern, Ong Chan Hao
Competition HostVolume Zero
AwardHonourable Mention


What would a habitat for the first five colonizers on the Red Planet be like? How does it help with research on the viability of life for the future human generations, and how does it define a trend for Martian architecture?

A competition organised by Volume Zero. See the entry.

The Story

A pioneering colony on Mars demands an architecture that is not only conducive to our first steps, but also to serve as the future seat of a permanent colony.

Forgoing static planning for a dynamic system, boring machines cut across the Martian surface to construct an ever-growing spine, promising limitless expansion for colonists. The spine first serves as research domains, then transforms into a circulatory system for materials and colonists, catalysing new developments.

Expansion is only finite, as eventually Mars will also be stripped of its luster, joining Earth as another waypoint on mankind’s never-ending journey.

Waypoint: Mars

We have never been satisfied with our lot. Human nature has driven us to heights unanticipated, and Earth poses no more challenge to our pioneers.

Our future lies amongst the stars, and in this age of navel-gazing and uncertainty we need more than ever a symbol of progress; one that anticipates an interplanetary future and captures the imagination.

As such this pioneering colony on Mars demands an architecture that is conducive to our first tentative steps, yet serve as the future seat of a thriving permanent colony. It will have to adapt to the reality of automation from an anthropocentric core. Most of all, it must serve as testament to the will of the men and women that brought us this far – and as a beacon of inspiration to those that will follow.

Thus: a bold, linear gesture that forgoes static planning in favour of a modular, growing axis – promising limitless expansion for colonists present and future in a new world of infinite possibility. A payload of engineer-researchers will assess and overcome challenges using rapid prototyping, relying on offworld drops of ABS as initial raw material, with the eventual goal of total self-sustainability, spearheading future colonization efforts.

Download the competition entry pdf:

Gardens and fab-labs flank a central spine of human activity as researchers push into the unknown – a machine built to serve the twin spirits of life and innovation.
A technological future for mankind: The physical heart of the new city becomes a hive for drones and material as colonists strip Mars to build faster and further. Even as human endeavour drives us to new heights, our fundamental – perhaps destructive – nature remains unchanged.