After exploring the horizons in various aspects, Virtual Reality has now marched its footsteps to architecture. Initially, what seemed beyond imagination has been witnessing rapid growth in the Architectural world, each passing day. It is a common phenomenon that the architect enters his own building, which in the end doesn’t match with his vision. Traditional design visualization can only offer this much and this is when VR comes in the spotlight. People often don’t understand the exact spatial relationship by just taking a look at a 2D or 3D model, but VR can give an experience similar to the physical architecture. VR plays an important role in the designing and construction process, from generating design options to proposals and to finding out errors. Let us just take a look at it-
Concepts are the most significant part in architecture. An architect has to design the model keeping in mind the necessities of his client. With Building Information Modelling (BIM), which is the physical and functional characteristics of a facility, the architect needs to imagine being in the actual place and VR makes it possible. For instance, with VR it is possible to see different shades of light in a particular room at any time of the day or the wall color or the different styles of flooring. With Virtual Reality allows us to experience the proportions and scale our necessities accordingly. At any stage, an architect can just pop a headset and step inside the building.
Construction is a headlong process and VR can be of great help to track the progress of a construction site. Users can actually see and experience the foundation being executed, sites being graded and the buildings being constructed along with the demolitions on the occurrence of any errors. Headsets make it possible for the user to execute minute details or spin the building like a turntable to make necessary subjective changes.
Architects are now making advancements in developing a new tool of Virtual Reality for people suffering from dementia. Known as the Virtual Reality-Empathy Platform (VR-EP), the kit consists of a laptop with graphics, games controller, camera, software programming and a VR headset.
People suffering from dementia can have cognitive impairments which can lead to confusion and anxiety, but VR replicates visual impairments in an interactive environment to make it simple.
While BIM makes the life cycle of a building easier at all stages it somehow fails to explore the human elements of architecture- space and aesthetics, which VR can. Currently, VR is being used as a big tool to wow clients but the real power will be realized when the architects and engineers will include VR as an essential tool for designing.