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Construction to Begin on World’s First Floating City!

Posted by on Friday, November 29th, 2013

Freedom Ship International

A view of Freedom Ship International — Image source: Inhabitat.com

Some technology is inevitable. We know it’s on its way, but nobody can be exactly sure just how many years it will be until it finally becomes a reality. Floating architecture is a perfect example of this. Designers have come up with a few rudimentary floating buildings, but nobody has genuinely made an attempt to build a floating city of the future.

But that’s all about to change! A Florida-based construction firm plans to move forward with the construction of Freedom Ship International, a massive 25-floor ship that will become the world’s first floating structure. The floating city will offer virtually everything that you could find in a conventional city: residences, shopping areas, art galleries, parks, casinos, aquariums, schools, hospitals, and an airport on the upper-most level.

Floating City

The ship will measure 4,500 feet long — Image source: Inhabitat.com

The finished product will be 780 feet shy of hitting the one mile marker with an intended length of 4,500 feet. Obviously, most harbors aren’t designed with such gigantic ships in mind, so the Freedom Ship International will simply putter from major city to major city and remain anchored offshore.

That’s a shrewd business plan. By sailing from city to city, FSI will bring in tons of revenue as locals in each new city clamor to go on shopping sprees on the world’s first floating mall. That strategy will ensure that the ship will pay for itself — between taking a cut of all transactions and what will likely be astronomically high property values, the FSI should be able to pay for everyday maintenance and make a hefty profit on the side.

Of course, it will take more than a few years to pay off the ship’s staggering $10 billion price tag. The company’s vice-president announced that they’re just $1 million short of being able to begin construction, so it’s entirely possible that we could see construction begin on the world’s first floating city within the next year or so.

Freedom Ship International

The Freedom Ship International will have an airport on the upper level. — Image source: Inhabitat.com

I’m excited that somebody is finally taking the plunge into the future of floating cities, but I also wish that they’d selected a slightly more eye-catching design. The FSI is rather on the industrial side. Don’t get me wrong — I’m sure that the finished FSI will be quite impressive as it oh-so-slowly sails along the coastline of major metropolises. However, the multi-layer design and minimal flourishes make it look a bit like a parking garage. I suspect that the view will be much more impressive from on board the ship, where visitors will be able to stroll through hundreds of shops and verdant parks.

Overall, I’m torn about the FSI. On the plus side, we’re finally on the verge of having a floating city. This breakthrough could revolutionize public and private development projects by transforming the open ocean into prime real estate. On the down side, you obviously have to be a little bit skeptical of such an ambitious project, especially since nothing like this has ever been done before. FSI represents a chance for aquatic architecture to really impress the people of the world, and I worry that its somewhat uninspired design won’t always turn heads.

What are your thoughts? How do you feel about the design of the Freedom Ship International?

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