arcology Burj-Dubai chicago-spire Innovation Science Shimizu-Mega-City-Pyramid sim-city

Sim City Arcologies are Becoming a Reality

Launch Arcology from Sim City 2000Back in the day, I was huge fan of Sim City, Sim City 2000, and even Sim City 3000. So much so that I put up a small fansite and was constantly bombarded by emailed requests to download Sim City for free. Sim City was a great game but it never was a completely accurate city simulator. In Sim City 2000, for example, filling every square of land with high-rises would only get your population to 100,000 or so. In order to reach the millions, you had to wait past the far-flung future year of 2000 and build arcologies. Now we are seven years past 2000, so where are the arcologies? On their way. There a number of projects being proposed and built that could qualify. First, there's this huge pyramid proposed for Tokyo Bay. Shimizu Mega-City Pyramid is obviously an arcology, just take a look at this clip from Extreme Engineering: [youtube]vfsoBAT27pA[/youtube] The Burj DubaiNow Simizu may never be built, but another arcology-sized building, Burj Dubai, is well on it's way to completion. When it's completed, it will be the world's tallest building by a huge margin - the current tallest, Taipei 101, is 509.2 m / 1,671 ft. Burj Dubai will be 818 m / 2,684 ft. The tower will have a hotel, offices, apartments, and probably some retail. Still, you could make an argument that it's not intended to be a complete city in a building, so it's not a real arcology. If you include the nearby highrises and Dubai Mall, all surrounded by harsh desert and built in the last ten years, it's hard to argue that this is a totally different way of building human habitat. If you are despairing at the prospect of yet another world's tallest building going up outside of the United States, birthplace of the skyscraper, take heart. The Chicago Spire, planned to hit 609.6 m / 2,000 feet, shows that America is not yet out of the supertall game. This one is even less like an arcology, though, since it will be entirely residential. Apparently architect Santiago Calatrava skipped right on to Sim City 3000.