Future Vision Aqua Cities

The structure of the floating city planned in the sea of ​​the Maldives resembles the coils of a brain coral.  ©Waterstudio.NL – Dutch Docklands Maldives

The structure of the floating city planned in the sea of ​​the Maldives resembles the coils of a brain coral.
©Waterstudio.NL – Dutch Docklands Maldives

Get out on the water to escape the consequences of climate change: This is the idea behind the futuristic-looking plans of "aquatects". They want to resettle people in cleverly constructed swimming cities. In the July issue, bild der wissenschaft reports on the construction of such settlements that has already begun and how scientists are developing ever more sophisticated concepts for amphibious architecture.

It seems highly questionable that mankind will still be able to get the climate problem it has caused itself under control. One should therefore now prepare for the impending consequences. An important aspect is the rise in sea level caused by the melting of the ice masses. According to forecasts, many of the world's currently densely populated coasts and islands could be flooded by the end of the century. So if you don't want to go under, you have to flee - or swim on top: Due to the threatening future scenarios, the concepts for building floating houses and entire cities on the water are increasingly becoming the focus of settlement planning.

In the first article of the two-part title topic, the bdw author Martin Angler deals with the previous developments, the current construction projects and the further development of the technologies of aqua architecture. In the Netherlands in particular, multi-storey constructions have been floating on stable bases for some time. However, these are still rather expensive rarities. On the other hand, in the island state of the Maldives, which is particularly threatened by sea-level rise, a major project is now to ensure extensive and affordable settlement space on the sea. The construction of the aqua city, which consists of many modules resting on hollow concrete bodies, has already begun. In the end, the concept of a Dutch architect should include around 5000 floating houses. Angler reports on the structures and techniques intended to make the project literally viable and sustainable.

Flood-proof, elegant and sustainable

City planners in South Korea have even more ambitious goals: The floating city "Oceanix" is to be built there, which will one day offer around 100,000 people a home on the rising sea surface. The planners want to use sophisticated strategies to equip the settlement with an independent and sustainable energy and water supply. The platforms are also intended to provide space for the development of coral reefs, the author reports. In the article "Built on water" he also describes in detail what challenges the currently planned floating settlement projects entail and how researchers and engineers are mastering them. https://www.wissenschaft.de/bdwplus/auf-wasser-build-3/#slider-intro-1

In the second article of the title topic, the bdw editor Ralf Butscher focuses on an aqua architecture research project from Germany: It deals specifically with the potential of floating houses to become completely independent of the energy and water supply on land. Scientists from Brandenburg and Saxony have developed the necessary technology and have already implemented it in a construction: This is how a very special house with its own electricity, heat and drinking water supply was created, which is now floating on an opencast lake in southern Brandenburg. The ingenious concepts can now benefit the development of self-sufficient infrastructures of floating cities - but also of settlements on land, according to the article "abbeled".

You can read the articles on the cover topic “Floating Cities” online as part of a bdw+ subscription, or you can find them in the July issue of bild der wissenschaft, which will be available in stores from June 20th.

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