Floating Ecosystems-A Sustainable Alternative
The inspiration for floating cities stems from the major problems facing the 21st century, such as land shortages, rising sea levels and growing C02 emissions, all of which many suspect will lead to the demise of our land-dependent population sooner rather than later.
The creators of Blue 21 believe future communities will be water-based and that floating self-sustaining eco-systems will be able to alleviate earth’s over-populated space by utilizing the world’s oceans to house the population. The floating structures would be able to sustainably produce food for its communities without competing for scarce land and or depleting natural resources.
The Blue 21 project incorporates a number of strategic sustainable features to ensure healthy, green living standards, including hydroponic growing systems, biofuel production through floating algae, and protected fish and seafood habitats that would contribute to a “cyclical metabolism”. Additionally, the floating development is designed to be “plugged in” to existing cities in order to help recycle local waste nutrients and CO2 emissions that often pollute the environment.
This concept has already been turned into reality. An amazing neighborhood of 75 modern floating homes has popped up in IJburg, Netherlands, paying tribute to close relationship that the Dutch have with water. Using docks as sidewalks and the IJ Lake as a backyard, the flotilla is a large-scale adaptive development in a country that will be disproportionately affected with rising seas due to climate change. The modular homes by Architectenbureau Marlies Rohmer feature a flexible design – wall panels can be swapped for windows to adjust each house to its site. On a hot day residents can jump off the porch for a dip, or in winter they can strap on a pair of ice skates to get around.