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China’s Chengdu Future City Among Major Global Metaverse-Inspired Projects

The Metaverse is a growing phenomenon with many new entrants adopting the technology as the days go by. Creating metaverse projects cuts across different categories of developers, especially since the exponential growth in the awareness of virtual reality that was encouraged by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The participants that are actively involved in metaverse development include governments, technological companies, and independent users. These participants are deploying all manner of skills towards the realization of virtual existence. Coupled with the growing complexities of climate change and how it could limit human interaction, various governments around the world are already working towards virtual cities. These are cities that could sustain the dynamics of human interaction, despite impending physical limitations.

China as a country ranks high among the nations where the metaverse is gaining significant adoption, albeit in the early stages. Thousands of metaverse patents have been registered in China, with prominent tech companies in the region leading the charge. As a government, the positive sentiment and accommodative body language towards this technology are also obvious. It has become an inspiration for the development of human infrastructure, especially in the context of a futuristic perspective.

Chengdu, the sub-provincial city in Sichuan, which also serves as the capital city of the province has joined other major cities of the world in initiating a futuristic city being built around metaverse-inspired smart technology. This futuristic city is called Chengdu Future City.

The Chengdu Future City adopts an architecture that is detached from the conventional planning of regular urban cities. Its master plan is based on a concept that is different from the traditional car-oriented road networks. The city comprises six distinct zones that are connected by automated vehicles via a smart mobility network.

Pedestrian friendliness was also considered in the design of the Chengdu Future City. All the zones are interconnected and are just 10 minutes walking distance from each other. The city spans a total area of 4.6 square kilometers, within which it included an international education park with landscaped terraces of buildings, including a university.

The Chengdu Future City is just one of several other metaverse-based cities that are popping up in different parts of the world. The Mirror Line project in Saudi Arabia is another prominent example. It is a Neom Project whose cost is estimated at $500 million. The flagship infrastructure of this city is the planned record-setting 170 kilometers-long skyscraper called the Mirror Line.

The Mirror Line will consist of two buildings standing parallel to each other with a height of 490 meters each. It is designed by a US-based architectural firm known as Morphosis Architects. The target of the Mirror Line designers is to achieve zero carbon emissions since there will be no cars within the walkable city. There will also be a high-speed transport system that will connect both ends of the city in 20 minutes.

In Malaysia, a futuristic city known as the BiodiverCity is also in the works. Three artificial islands built off the shore of Penang Island will sustain this future idea. Each of the three islands is expected to accommodate between 15,000 to 18,000 residents. BiodiverCity will be a nature-friendly city that will be constructed using only natural materials.

BiodiverCity is planned with tourism in mind. 4.6 kilometers of public beaches and 600 acres of parks with a 25 kilometers waterfront will make for an interesting tourist destination. The city will be free of cars and its inhabitants will explore the planned autonomous water, air, and land public transport network provided.

Other metaverse-inspired futuristic cities around the world include The Akon City in Senegal, Telosa in the United States, Woven City in Japan, New Administrative Capital, Egypt, Liberland, the Metaverse, Floating City in the Maldives and many more.

With the growing encroachment of newer technology and its application, more conceptual ideas will come to the limelight. Turning imagination into reality is one aspect where the metaverse is playing a key role in writing human history. In this area, China’s proactivity has been quite noticeable as exemplified by the futuristic model of the Chengdu Future City.


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