by Carla Andrea Fundarotto
Maldives Floating City is called, the initiative of the Maldives government which aims to transform the archipelago into a floating city with low environmental impact. The project, whose preparatory work will begin next September, was born in 2018 from an idea of the entrepreneur Mark Collins Chen , Minister of Tourism of French Polynesia, which was later conceived by the Dutch company Dutch Docklands , expert in floating infrastructures , and Waterstudio , which deals with urban planning and architecture. The idea is based on the construction of a fully floating city located just minutes from the capital Male and the international airport.
Where did the idea of building a floating city come from?
The idea was born following the rising of the sea which represents a serious threat to the island. The “melting of the glaciers”, in fact, is one of the consequences of global warming and will inevitably cause the sea level to rise. A recent study found that by 2050, at least 90% of the world’s largest cities will face rising seas. Recent studies have revealed that by 2050 the 26 atolls in the northern Indian Ocean will become uninhabitable and above all that they will be submerged by water before all places in the world because of their morphology. These islands are in fact only 90 centimeters above sea level and according to some estimates the state is the country with the least land in the world.
But how is the floating city built?
The project foresees an area of about 200 hectares, where buildings will rise directly on the water and where there will be not only houses, but also hotels, restaurants and trendy boutiques. There will also be a school and a hospital.
The Structure will consist of three areas: the neighborhood, the village (made up of several districts) and the city (made up of several villages). Thanks to the biorock, an extremely light material covered with limestone, the islets can float and withstand storms. In the center of the cities, the spaces will be destined for homes, while around them, on islands of sand, hotels will be placed with their large structures. The floating infrastructures will be anchored thanks to these strips of land with the important function of barrier to ocean waves, thus decreasing their strength.
When will the works start?
The first preparatory works will begin next September and in 2022 the real constructions will begin. According to forecasts, the floating city is expected to be finished by the second half of the decade.
With the start of the works, sales will open, which, according to reports, will have affordable prices. It will be possible to buy lots starting from 250 thousand dollars (roughly just over 200 thousand euros), for a house of about 300 square meters, with a roof terrace and inevitable sea view.The most used material for construction, thanks to the conditions of the territory and the capacity of flexibility and at the same time of resistance, should be wood and bamboo. The consumption of CO2, thanks to the ban on the transit of cars and trucks, to photovoltaic, wind and self-power systems, will be reduced to the maximum.