What will the city of the future look like? Or, more importantly, what should it look like?
Yesterday, 15 students from the Vienna European School visited us at the Complexity Science Hub (CSH) and, in a workshop with CSH researchers Rafael Prieto-Curiel and Dániel Kondor, designed a city as perfect as possible.
There was a lively discussion: How far should people travel to reach the nearest hospital? And how many subway lines and stations minimize travel time?
Three groups resulted in three cities. Three cities that were remarkably similar in the end. All of them had a more or less round shape. “Quite simply because it’s practical. Everything you need is relatively close by,” a student pointed out when Rafael asked about their decision for this city shape.
THE ROUND SHAPE WINS
Simple, yet somewhat surprising. After all, the students visited us during their project week because they wanted to learn more about the mega-project “The Line,” a 170km long, 500m high, and only 200m wide city planned to be built in the Saudi Arabian desert. Rafael and Dániel, who argued in a previous study that a linear city is neither practical nor livable, didn’t need to be told twice.
EXPLORE IT FOR YOURSELVES
“But it’s important that we don’t tell the young people what makes the cities of the future livable; they should discover it themselves,” Rafael and Dániel are convinced. Because what the world of tomorrow will look like depends on those who will shape it tomorrow.
And so, how should the city of the future look? “Round, compact, and dense in the center, car-free, crisscrossed by an efficient network of public transportation, and green,” the students succinctly concluded.