Monday, October 26, 2009


I first learned the word arcology as the end goal of the video game SimCity 2000. Who knew that years later, I'd be living in one of the closest approximations of one . . .

"Arcology . . . is a set of architectural design principles aimed toward the design of enormous habitats (hyperstructures) of extremely high human population density. These largely hypothetical structures would contain a variety of residential and commercial facilities and minimize individual human environmental impact. They are often portrayed as self-contained or economically self-sufficient.

The McMurdo Station of the United States Antarctic Program and other scientific research stations on the continent of Antarctica may most closely approximate the popular conception of an arcology as a technologically-advanced, self-sufficient human community. Although by no means entirely self-sufficient (the U.S. Military "Operation Deep Freeze" resupply effort delivers 8 million gallons of fuel and 11 million pounds of supplies and equipment yearly) the base has a very insular character as a necessary shelter and protection from an extremely harsh environment, is geographically isolated from conventional support networks, and must avoid damage to the surrounding Antarctic ecosystem due to an international treaty. The base generates electricity with its own power plant, and grows fruits and vegetables in a hydroponic green house mainly for limited winter use when resupply is nonexistent. The base also provides a full range of living and entertainment amenities for the 3,000 or so science and support staff that visit each year." -from Wikipedia's entry on Arcology.

Thanks to Evan Jenkins for bringing this to my attention.

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