Meanwhile, Arnaud Grignard and his colleagues at the MIT Media Lab are using agent-based simulation to explore possible designs for busy public spaces, including a regenerated Champs-Élysées in Paris. And New York startup Topos is using AI to help understand how the layout of a city affects those living in it. In one project it used a range of AI approaches, including image recognition and natural-language processing, to learn how different areas in New York were used by the people living there. It then redrew the boundaries of New York’s five boroughs on the basis of similarities between neighborhoods, such as whether they are residential or commercial, leafy or urban. The resulting map arrays the boroughs as more or less concentric rings around a central Manhattan.
Jasper Wijnands, at the University of Melbourne in Australia, is also convinced that AI has a place in future urban design. He and his