By 2050, the United Nations predicts that over two-thirds of the world’s population will live in urban areas. To many architects, the most appealing response to this this influx is to build vertically. But rather than continuing to colonize the sky by erecting skyscrapers which, as they grow taller, embody ever-louder expressions of bravado, why not consider constructing in the opposite direction? The idea of going underground is gaining favor. In Mexico City, for example, architecture firm BNKR Arquitectura has proposed a 65-story inverted pyramid—the “Earthscraper”; this nod to the city’s Aztec history could house 5, 000 people underneath the Plaza de la Constitución. Singapore and other Asian metropolises have also begun subterranean exploration in response to population booms. Doing so pushes against popular conceptions of the underground as a burial zone or a space occupied by the living only while This story is from Kinfolk Issue Thirty-Two Buy Now Related Stories Arts & Culture Issue 19 Going Incognito We all secretly wonder what mischief we’d make if invisible: When our identity is hidden, everything seems possible. Arts & Culture Issue 19 The Best Policy Sometimes we talk to each other without feeling heard. Honesty—a most intimate interaction—can be just as thrilling as its more devious inverse. Arts & Culture Issue 19 A Sense of Suspense With unhinged imaginations and mountains of cliff-hangers, the filmmakers behind the sci-fi podcast Limetown have all the makings of a scary story. Arts & Culture Issue 19 Like Clockwork In this new column about time, we learn how slipping off our watches makes us feel like deadline-damning renegades. Arts & Culture Music Issue 19 On a Grander Scale Malaysian singer-songwriter Yuna now may live on the opposite side of the globe, but she’s determined to evolve while staying true to her roots. Arts & Culture Issue 19 Neighborhood: Fire Stations The firefighting profession has evolved over time from Ancient Rome’s rudimentary bucket brigades to today’s sleek life-saving departments.