Epic Games Unreal Engine Launches Project Hillside

Recreating the original vision for Habitat 67 with Unreal Engine and RealityCapture

Project Hillside Trailer | © Unreal Engine

Moshe Safdie’s original vision for Habitat 67 has become a reality with real-time tools and techniques that Safdie could have only dreamed of when he first envisioned the project 56 years ago. Project Hillside is a collaborative project among Safdie Architects, Epic Games, and Neoscape that digitally manifests the complete masterplan of Safdie Architects’ most iconic project. This gives a new generation of audience an opportunity to experience what Habitat 67 could have been in real-time and its entirety.

To bring the original design of Habitat 67 to life in Unreal Engine 5, Safdie Architects expanded upon the original masterplan's components to construct the unbuilt portion of Habitat 67. The Safdie team used the schematic drawings from the 60s held at The Moshe Safdie Archive of McGill University to further develop the hotel, school, office spaces, and other buildings that are part of the complex to create a comprehensive 3D model. Safdie and his team gave particular consideration to interpreting the interconnectivity between diverse building programs, assessing the structural feasibility, considering the functionality of the water features and gardens, as well as the intricate network of pedestrian and vehicular connections and how they relate to each other in the overall site plan. This cross-generational effort within Safdie Architects’ office was then brought to Neoscape, where they used just a few tools from the Epic Games Ecosystem to develop key visualization requirements. What was just a concept in 1961 was brought to life.

“This is exactly what we need to rethink how our cities are made. I hope that making this model accessible to the public at large and the idea that you could live somewhere like Habitat 67 helps advance people's desire to have this realized.”

— Moshe Safdie, Safdie Architects Founding Partner

“Many of the foundational principles that continue to advance Safdie Architects’ work today can all be traced back to Habitat 67. Our projects through the years have evolved and built on the core values of fostering community, providing equitable access to light, air, and green space, and humanizing large-scale development, all of which are embodied in Habitat 67. To be able to use the latest technology to demonstrate the potential of these ideas allows them to live on beyond the walls of our studio.”

— Jaron Lubin, Safdie Architects Senior Partner

Project Hillside is now available on Unreal Engine, explore the original Habitat 67 model, full cinematics, and scanned data now.

Published in Events on May 17, 2023

Tags: Release