Dome Cities In the World of 2011

Dome cities as they’ve been called have been a mainstay of futurists since the 1960’s.  But unlike the fantastic domed cities of tomorrow that may have once graced the exhibits of the World’s Fair, the latest incarnation of the domed city might actually be feasible and cheaper than ever before.  And with climate controls within each city’s walls, entire civilizations might be built in entirely enclosed environments at less cost than they normally would be.  If Remizov’s theories prove valid, we may be looking at the future – and it’s all under glass.

The Remizov domes use a completely new approach to the concept of a future enclosed in a small space.  Rather than using the nuclear reactors or geothermal energy of yore that would have been both expensive and difficult to construct (and dangerous in the case of nuclear reactors) these structures would instead focus on minimizing the amount of energy used and push for energy to come from natural sources such as the wind and sun.  These truly green cities would have areas set aside in layers for parks and crops while the under sides of the struts would be layered like shelves or pancakes on top of one another.

The outside structure would be largely prefabricated, and would look like a glass slinky that would unfurl and fan out allowing a tropical rainforest or other environmental extreme to be grown in the middle of even the harshest desert or even floating on the sea.  As the domed city swayed gently on the breeze and stood solid against any oncoming hurricanes, the clear plastic dome would collect solar energy through clear photovoltaic cells and a wind turbine at the top.  Below the dome, which could house anywhere from 50 to 10,000 people depending on the size of the structure.  Rather than needing to be built, the structure would simply spring up from its prefabricated design and begin taking in citizens.

What would living in a dome be like?  It’s easy to paint a picture of a brilliant futuristic utopia, but life in a domed community would have its own host of problems as well.  As the gardens within would be carefully maintained, personal accountability may be of high importance to the other citizens of each domed community.  And each dome may even build up its own politics and in cases of extreme isolation, perhaps even its own government.  And if food production were automated on the plentiful surfaces within the dome, and electricity were taken directly from the environment around them those wanting to get in may require a large initial investment with the promise of a life of luxury after that.  Or a sort of “rent” system could be settled partially through the division of labor.

The main hurdles a system such as this will have to overcome will likely be the cost.  But if it were cost effective, housing developers could benefit by turning vast areas of desert from completely barren wastelands into promising new frontiers.