Evolutionary algorithms are a class of stochastic search methods that attempts to emulate the biological process of evolution, incorporating concepts of selection, reproduction, and mutation. In recent years, there has been an increase in the use of evolutionary approaches in the training of artificial neural networks (ANNs). While evolutionary techniques for neural networks have shown to provide superior performance over conventional training approaches, the simultaneous optimization of network performance and architecture will almost always result in a slow training process due to the added algorithmic complexity. In this paper, we present a geometrical measure based on the singular value decomposition (SVD) to estimate the necessary number of neurons to be used in training a single-hidden-layer feedforward neural network (SLFN). In addition, we develop a new hybrid multiobjective evolutionary approach that includes the features of a variable length representation that allow for easy adaptation of neural networks structures, an architectural recombination procedure based on the geometrical measure that adapts the number of necessary hidden neurons and facilitates the exchange of neuronal information between candidate designs, and a microhybrid genetic algorithm (mu HGA) with an adaptive local search intensity scheme for local fine-tuning. In addition, the performances of well-known algorithms as well as the effectiveness and contributions of the proposed approach are analyzed and validated through a variety of data set types.