It would be far easier and would require less energy to build new, efficient cities than to attempt to update and solve the problems of the old ones. The Venus Project proposes a Research City that would use the most sophisticated available resources and construction techniques. Its geometrically elegant and efficient circular arrangement will be surrounded by, and incorporated into the city design, parks and lovely gardens. This city will be designed to operate with the minimum expenditure of energy using the cleanest technology available, which will be in harmony with nature to obtain the highest possible standard of living for everyone. This system facilitates efficient transportation for city residents, eliminating the need for automobiles. The Venus Project's Circular City arrangement is comprised of the following:
All the facilities are available to everyone without cost in a resource based economy. The sole purpose of this sophisticated technology is to free people from boring monotonous tasks, make available a much higher standard of living, and provide more leisure time.
With an opportunity for constant growth and achievement people could have the time and freedom to choose the lifestyle they find most fulfilling. The city is designed to serve the needs of every member of society.
The Venus Project calls for a cybernated society in which computers could replace the outmoded system of electing politicians that in most cases represent the entrenched vested interests. This new technology will not dictate or monitor individuals' lives, since in The Venus Project this would be considered socially offensive and counterproductive. Books such as 1984 and Brave New World, and motion pictures such as Blade-Runner and Terminator 2 have spawned fear in some people regarding the takeover of technology in our society. The Venus Project's only purpose is to elevate the spiritual and intellectual potential of all people, while at the same time providing the goods and services that will meet their individual and material needs.
Cybernation is the linking of computers with automated systems. Eventually the central cybernated systems will coordinate all of the machinery and equipment that serve the entire city, the nation and ultimately the world. One can think of this as an electronic autonomic nervous system extending into all areas of the social complex.
For example, in the agricultural belt the computers could automatically monitor and maintain the water table, soil chemistry, and coordinate the planting and harvesting of crops. In the residential sector, the system could maintain environmental cleanliness and the recycling of waste materials.
In addition, to ensure the efficient operation of the city's various functions, all of the processes and services could be equipped with electronic environmental feedback sensors. These sensors could be coordinated with redundant, back-up systems that could operate in the event of failure or breakdown of the city's primary systems.
Only when cybernation is integrated into all aspects of this new and dynamic culture can computers appropriately serve the needs of all people. No technological civilization can ever operate efficiently and effectively without the integration of cybernetics as an integral part of this new world civilization.
These proposals, from an engineering standpoint, seem fantastic and unfeasible within the present monetary system; and they are. The sums involved in ventures of this magnitude would be too huge and inconceivable. No government today can possibly afford this prodigious undertaking. All of this could only be accomplished in a resource-based world economy where all of the world's resources are held as the common heritage of all of the earth's peoples.
This University of Global Resource Management and Environmental Studies, or "world-university," is a testing ground for each phase of development. This would be a dynamic, continually evolving research institute open to all of society. Student performance would be based on "competence accreditation," and research findings would be periodically applied directly to the social structure to benefit all members of the world society. People will live in these experimental cities and provide feedback on the reliability and serviceability of the various structures. This information would be used to formulate modifications to structures so that maximum efficiency, comfort, and safety is assured. This facility is also used to develop modular construction systems and components that can be installed to serve a wide range of needs and preferences. In most instances, the external appearance of the buildings will reflect the function of the building - they are designed "from the inside out."
These skyscrapers would be constructed of reinforced and pre-stressed concrete, steel and glass. They will be stabilized against earthquakes and high winds by three massive, elongated, tapered columns. These support structures will surround the cylindrical central tower, which is 150 feet wide. This tripod-like structure is reinforced to diminish compression, tension, and torsion stresses. These super-size skyscrapers will assure that more land will be available for parks and wilderness preserves, while concurrently helping to eliminate urban sprawl. Each one of these towers will be a total enclosure system containing an access center, as well as childcare, educational, health, and recreational facilities. This will help alleviate the need to travel to outside facilities.
If we do not maintain a balance between the population and the earth's carrying capacity we may have to move our cities not only skyward and seaward, but subterranean as well.
For inhospitable regions of the planet, such as polar and desert areas, underground cities would provide entirely comfortable homes for many. Numerous elevators will readily allow residents to enjoy skiing and other recreational activities on the surface. The primary source of power for these cities, where feasible, would be geothermal energy.
Designs by Jacque Fresco, The Venus Project ©
Models and Photos by Jacque Fresco & Roxanne Meadows
3D Renderings by supporters of The Venus Project