Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Fast City

Posted By on Wed, Feb 10, 2010 at 8:30 AM

I am a huge fan of Fast Company and have been ever since the magazine started.

In this month's issue, for example, they have a story about how Volkwagen is trying to win over America and one about sophisticated prostheses that seem like something out of The Six Million Dollar Man.

But what caught my eye was a story about an influx of new urbanites and how tech companies are trying to build new green cities to house them. It begins thusly:

The Korean government had found his firm on the Internet and made an offer everyone else had refused. The brief: [Gale International head Stan] Gale would borrow $35 billion from Korea's banks and its biggest steel company, and use the money to build from scratch a city the size of downtown Boston, only taller and denser, on a muddy man-made island in the Yellow Sea. When Gale arrived to see the site, it was miles of open water. He signed anyway.

The instant city is designed LEED-certified, emitting a third of the green-house gases of a typical city its size, as well an international business district, an aerotropolis (no, we're not the only ones chasing this concept), and a smart city with every inch of the city wired.

But with humans becoming an urban species, and the world's 20 largest megacities consuming 75 percent of its energy, these green instant cities represent an emerging market and an opportunity for technology companies.

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