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A construction company that proposed putting solar panels on the moon has developed a plan that may be even more ambitious: they want to build a city that sinks to the ocean floor.
Shimizu Corporation unveiled their blueprints for the underwater cities in Tokyo this week, predicting that the first of them would be ready for residents to move in as early as 2030.
Each Ocean Spiral – as the cities will be known – will be able to house roughly 5,000 people and will have an enormous floating dome at the surface, which could be made watertight and retracted underwater in bad weather as deep as nine miles.
According to Shimizu, the seabed could also be mined for rare earth minerals and metals, while an ‘earth factory’ would use micro-organisms to produce methane from carbon dioxide.
Industrial-scale three-dimensional printers would create the components of each Ocean Spiral from resin rather than concrete. Undersea docking facilities would allow the delivery of supplies.
Although the initial cost of the project could be as much as £16.4billion, the Japanese company say subsequent Ocean Spirals would be significantly cheaper.