Some boats with the full plastic and sunbrella enclosures have been very sucessful at utilising the cockpit as a permanent additional room.
So, sure the nav station and the helm station can be combined.
Cockpit tables have electrical outlets for laptops for additional info sources.
The library of books needed are now on computer, including the requiremens to have a copy of ColRegs for instance... All on computer.
The space given to the nav station below has been reduced and reduced and now on many new boats its multi function with a saloon sofa. Anyway its become the electrical switch board and entertainment center.
The other night a friend was describing how he has connected he tv on the saloon wall to the PC and uses a wireless keyboard and mouse to do his nav from the lounge instead of the nav station.
So yes, the nav station can become a bar, or added space, if the elements are moved to better locations.
Every other walk of life is modernising, why shouldnt boats. Inner city trendy appartments dont have kitchens any more but areas integrated with the living room where one can cook.... My house doesnt have a laundry anymore... The clothes washer/dryer is in the kitchen under benches...
A creative mind can do a lot for the livability of a boat.