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terça-feira, 9 de julho de 2013

Masdar, a city of the future

Masdar City, in Abu Dhabi, is a planned city, what means that over there things can't be build in a particular way that is technically know in architecture and other arts as "I do any f*ck that I want". There are many planned cities all over the world, but what makes this one special is that it is being build with the objective to serve as model of how cities will be (and will need to be) in the future.

All the buildings, the streets and everything else, are all designed to create a city where cars are not necessary, where climate and weather conditions are considered and where everything is as self sustainable as possible, using only clean forms of energy, like solar and wind, and recycling everything, including water.

Much of what is necessary to make a structure such as this to work is still on the field of theory, for this reason part of the project is to make the city a pole for development of technologies of this kind, offering the possibility to develop and test in great scale all the necessary applications, that can later be exported to be applied in cities all over the world. A great number of companies, from all parts of the globe, and research institutes such as MIT are part of the project.

Self driven electronic cars and one of the City's field of solar panels

Right now, just a select group of 100 students are living in the city. This number will be increased to another 500, when the second step of the building schedule concludes later this year. Also later this year, the German multinational engineering and electronics conglomerate company, Siemens, will be the first private company to initiate operation in the city, on their on facility, build up considering all the standards of self sustainability and design of Masdar City.

The city is set to be fully operational until 2025, and it is expected to have a population of almost 50 thousand people, among students, workers from the companies and so on. Hit play to know more.

Just as a curiosity, it is worth to mention that this idea of a city that is a university, a institute of applied research, a industrial park and, without true intention, a actual city, is getting very popular, specially considering this aspect of smart self-sustainable cities.

In China, a city named "Great City", that I'm sure have a much more soundy name when said in Chinese, goes by the same ideas as Masdar City. In Portugal, a city named PlanIT Valley, not only go by these molds, they also wanna be a pole of development of other high advanced technologies. There also smaller projects, like the city of Fujisawa, in Japan.

Considering that people are weirdly complicated and that reality very often goes irresponsibly and almost comically against the notion of what is correct, nothing can really assure that we will have cities as this ones in the future. Nevertheless, it is undeniably important to see people thinking about these problems of transportation, sustainability and all, with actual money being invested in it and with concrete results at the end.

Another thing that gets my attention is this idea of a "City of scientists", despite the fact that it includes many different professions, there is a well defined focus and it gives to these cities a especial character. How long it will take to expand these idea to other similar cities, like a "Artificial Intelligence City", or "Hospital City", or a "City of Law, Judgment and rights", or a "City of Music", or a "City of Economy"? Personally, I don't think it is positive when people of a certain group isolate themselves to live only with people of that group, I really don't. At the same time, I do can see how beneficial it would be to have these poles focused in development, with the best professionals, literally, living as neighbors, receiving the best investments, creating the top of the technology to be applied all over the world.

But, for now, skipping the subject entirely, do you think they can come up with a self-sustainable version of McDonalds? I really like that sh*t.

--- Links
- Video of a visit at Masdar City, occurred in last January
- More about Masdar City, in Wikipedia
- Masdar City website
- More about Siemens, in Wikipedia
- More about the "Great City", in China
PlanIT Valley City website
Fujisawa City website