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 50 Close Knit Close Knit: Meet the weavers keeping traditional Egyptian tapestrymaking alive. Arts & Culture Issue 50 The Old Gays Inside a Californian TikTok “content house” of a very different stripe. Arts & Culture Issue 50 New Roots The Palestinian art and agriculture collective sowing seeds of community. Arts & Culture Issue 50 Angela Trimbur An all-out tour de force. Arts & Culture Issue 50 Peace & Quiet In the UK, a centuries-old Quaker meeting house encourages quiet reflection. Arts & Culture Issue 50 Free Wheelers On the road with London’s Velociposse Cycling Club.