The architecture solution for submerged regions



A floating metropolis is seen as the long-term solution for the Maldives which has been warned to be submerge if sea levels rise more than a meter by the end of the century.

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A floating metropolis is seen as the long-term solution for the Maldives which has been warned to be submerge if sea levels rise more than a meter by the end of the century.

The architecture solution for submerged regions

The project for a floating city with buildings raised to sea level is taking shape in a lagoon in the Maldives, 10 minutes by boat from Male capital.

Planned with brain coral-like architecture, the city will feature 5,000 floating structures including houses, restaurants, shops and schools with canals flowing along each area.

The architecture solution for submerged regions

The first constructions will be announced this month and residents can move in as early as 2024. The entire city is expected to be completed in 2027 with a population of 20,000.

The architecture solution for submerged regions

The project is a collaboration between real estate developer Dutch Docklands (Netherlands) and the Maldives government, and is a practical solution to cope with sea level rise.

The architecture solution for submerged regions

The Maldives has 80% of its land area less than a meter above sea level. The country's officials warned that if sea level rises by one meter by the end of the century as forecasted, almost all of the Maldives will disappear.

Therefore, floating cities will be a new hope for more than half a million Maldivians - According to Koen Olthuis, founder of Waterstudio, the architectural firm that designed the city.

According to reinsurance company Swiss Re. , in 2021, flooding caused more than $82 billion in global damage.  Climate change causes extreme weather to occur more, with losses forecasted to increase dramatically.  A report from the World Resources Institute predicts that by 2030, coastal and riverine flooding will affect $700 billion of urban property.

The architecture solution for submerged regions

Similar floating projects have been launched such as the Oceanix urban area in South Korea or the group of floating islands in the Baltic Sea, but not in the same scale and speed as in the Maldives.

The project provides large space which can ease the burden on the capital Male - one of the most densely populated cities in the world.  Prices are also said to be competitive in the country: $150,000 for a studio apartment and $250,000 for a family home. 

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The architecture solution for submerged regions

The city will attract locals with its colorful houses, large balconies and sea views.  Residents will move between the areas by boat or can walk on the sandy roads by bicycle, electric scooter or on foot.

The project aims for the city to be self-sufficient and have the same functions as on land. Electricity is provided mainly by solar energy, while wastewater will be treated locally and reused as fertilizer for crops.  The city will also use seawater cooling to replace air conditioning which helps to save energy.

The architecture solution for submerged regions

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