As Climate Change Accelerates, Floating Cities Look Like Less of a Pipe Dream

That was the headline in the New York Times last week when the news broke about The Seasteading Institute’s plans to develop the first floating city in the waters of French Polynesia. The project has gained extensive international attention with prominent (online) newspapers covering the story such as The Daily Mail Online, The Dutch Cowboys and De Tijd.

To date, The Seasteading Institute has raised around $ 2.5 million from more than 1.000 investors to take the first steps in realising a seastead in a lagoon off the island of Tahiti. It is estimated that a total of between US $10 million and US $50 million will be needed to realise this ambitious plan.

The floating city will consist of 16 platforms made from reinforced concrete that will be strong enough to support three-storey buildings such as appartments, hotels and offices. Blue21 has been collaborating with The Seasteading Institute on the design of the sustainable modular platforms which will enable inhabitants to rearrange them according to their needs. Over the coming months Blue21 will continue collaborating with the Seasteading Institute to finalize the design of the floating city and the plans for development. Construction should start by 2019.

Where privately funded organisation such as The Seasteading Institute have clear ideas on how to overcome the challanges that climate change bring us, governments seem to be less focussed on battling these dangers. In the run-up to the upcoming elections in The Netherlands the national newspaper Trouw looked into the plans running political parties have for taking a stand in climate change. Unfortunately none of the parties seem to have a clear strategy on how to proceed. Let’s hope that the government will be inspired by the historical deal made in French Polynesia and take concrete steps against climate change in other parts of the world.

Image source: The Seasteading Institute

World’s first floating city to be developed in French Polynesia

French Polynesia has signed an historic agreement that will allow for the development of the first floating city in a lagoon in French Polynesia. During a visit to The Seasteading Institute in California on the 13th of January a memorandum of understanding was signed by Mr. Jean Christophe Bouissou, Minister of Housing and the government’s official spokesperson on behalf of French Polynesian President Edouard Fritch. Blue21 co-founder Karina Czapiewska was there on this memorable occasion.

The floating city is to be developed in a lagoon off the island of Tahiti. Suitable locations will be sought in sheltered waters behind a reef break so that the island will be protected from large waves. Environmental and economic impact studies will then be conducted to ensure that it will benefit the local economy and avoid damaging the environment.

The special governing framework needed to realize the development will be completed by the end of 2017, studies into the project should reach completion by 2018. Construction of the pilot project based on Blue21’s sustainable modular platform design, will hopefully start in 2019 and is estimated to cost between US $10 million and US $50 million.

This exciting new development has been picked up by media around the world with BBC News and Global Construction Review reporting on the news. Visit The Seasteading Institute’s website for more information on the collaboration with French Polynesia.

Image source: The Seasteading Institute

Exciting development for the future of world’s first seastead

On the 13th of January, the French Polynesian President, Édouard Fritch, will travel from Tahiti to San Francisco to meet with members of the Seasteading Institute. The purpose of his visit is to sign a Memorandum of Understanding, confirming the agreement with the Seasteading Institute to collaborate on developing the world’s first seastead in French Polynesia.

Blue21 co-founder Karina Czapiewska has travelled to California to witness this monumental step in the development of a floating city in the South Pacific. Last autumn Blue21 was also part of a delegation that travelled to Tahiti to meet with President Fritch and other government officials to discuss plans to develop a seastead in French Polynesian waters. If all goes to plan, the special governing framework needed to realize development, will be completed by the end of 2017.

For more information check out the Seasteading Institute’s website.

Image source: The Seasteading Institute

How would you design a floating city?

You can share your ideas on designing a floating city during the Dutch Design Week in Eindhoven from the 22nd to 30th of October, where our floating city design is part of Regeneration.

Our floating city design will be on display and open to feedback from visitors. This way we want to raise awareness on floating development as a solution to sea level rise, land shortage and climate change. And of course all feedback will help us in further developing our vision and design for floating cities of the future.

I am unable to attend the DDW but here are

 my ideas on designing a floating city

Thank you for sharing!

Location and opening hours Floating City @DDW

ddw-2016_2

Photos © Cleo Goossens @DDW 2016

Blue21’s floating city at Dutch Design Week 22nd -30th October


What ideas do you have when it comes to designing a floating city? You can share them with us during the Dutch Design Week in Eindhoven from the 22nd to 30th of October. There our floating city design will be on display and open to feedback from our visitors.

Will you not be visiting the Dutch Design Week? Or have you obtained new insights since you have visited our exhibition?

Then you can share your ideas with us here. In doing so you will help us in further developing our vision and design for floating cities of the future. Thank you!

On Regeneration
Our floating city design is part of Regeneration, an exhibition curated by Transnatural.

Regeneration explores the possibilities of regenerating our current, ecosystems. The exhibition will show a variety of projects by artists and designers who deal with issues involved with this ecological regeneration and, simultaneously, they investigate newly possible resources derived from these regenerated ecosystems.

Transnatural composed and curates the exhibition and offers an ongoing cultural program on balancing nature and technology and represents an Art & Design Label. After the DDW the exhibition will travel home to Transnatural where you can visit it until April 28th 2017.

Projects and participants
Caravel / Ivan Henriques (BR), The Salt Project / Eric Geboers (NL), Interwoven / Diana Scherer (NL), The Floating City / Blue21 (NL), Post-Fishing / Inês Marques (PT), Mist Collecting Surface / Robyn Tayler Payne (UK), ReGen Villages / ReGen Labs (NL) & Effekt architects (DK)

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