French Polynesia could host world's first floating city after signing agreement with Seasteading Institute

Plans to build the world’s first fully-floating city have taken a step forward, with the French Polynesian government reaching an agreement with nonprofit The Seasteading Institute to cooperate on a legal framework for the scheme, which would be located in the country’s waters.

Seasteading is a concept for new libertarian aquine communities granted “unprecedented political autonomy” by their host nations in exchange for economic and social benefits. Billionaire PayPal founder Peter Thiel is a supporter of the idea, and was an early financial backer of the Seasteading Institute.

Critics of the model argue it will merely create a haven away from traditional laws, taxes and regulations. However, the French Polynesian government has indicated its intention to allow the first seasteading settlement in its waters in the belief it will bring jobs, economic growth and environmental resiliency to the region, without the requirement of paying subsidies.

It has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the institute, stating that the new water-based community, currently called the Floating Island Project, would be granted it’s own “special governing framework” and could create an “innovative special economic zone.”

The Seasteading Institute has formed a new company, Blue Frontiers, to construct the island, which will use sustainable modular platforms designed by Dutch engineering firm Blue21 that can adapt to rising water levels and rough sea conditions. A delegation has been exploring potential sites near the islands of Tahiti, Tupai, and Raiatea.

Before it reaches the building stage, it must conduct an economic analysis to demonstrate the economic benefits for French Polynesia, as well as an environmental assessment to assure the health of the ocean and seabed.

Seasteading investors will self-fund the initial studies and the construction of the floating islands. The pilot project is expected to cost between US$10m (€9.3m, £8m) and US$50m (€46.5m, £40.1m).

“Our seasteading collaboration with French Polynesia was initiated by the Tahitians themselves and will bring jobs, economic growth, and environmental resiliency to the region,” said Randolph Hencken, executive director of the Seasteading Institute. “Signing the MOU with French Polynesia is an important first step, and a huge milestone for seasteading.

“We will draw from the best practices of more than 4,000 existing Special Economic Zones around the world to create a ‘Special Economic SeaZone, which will combine the advantages of French Polynesia’s geopolitical location with unique regulatory opportunities specifically designed to attract investors.”

French Polynesia was touted as a potential destination for floating cities by the country’s former tourism minister, Marc Collins. Explaining his reasons, he said: “More than most nations, our islands are impacted by rising sea levels, and resilient floating islands could be one tangible solution for us to maintain our populations anchored to their islands. For many Polynesians, leaving our islands is not an option.”

Architects and engineers have long been fascinated by life on water. Dutch designer Koen Olthuis recently told CLAD how floating structures can relieve pressure on overpopulated urban areas and offers flexible solutions for problems thrown up by rising sea levels and climate change.

Seasteading  Seasteading Institute  architecture  design  French Polynesia  floating cities 
Related stories

Floating Seahorse villas: CLAD gets exclusive first glimpse of underwater residence

Fancy owning a floating private island? Dutch developers create a luxury secluded getaway

Snowflake shaped designs revealed for European floating hotel

Plans to build the world’s first fully-floating city have taken a step forward, with the French Polynesian government reaching an agreement with nonprofit The Seasteading Institute to cooperate on a legal framework for the scheme, which would be located in the country’s waters. Seasteading is a concept for new libertarian aquine communities granted “unprecedented political autonomy” by their host nations in exchange for economic and social benefits. Billionaire PayPal founder
CLD,ARC,DES,ECO,TEC
One proposed design for a seasteading settlement / The Seasteading Institute
More news
News stories: 1 - 30 of 7564     
 
 
 
News stories: 1 - 30 of 7564     
 
 
 
company profile
Company profile: Starpool
Starpool is recognised as a leading company in spa design. Along with its business model based on careful planning, excellent products and outstanding services, Starpool is introducing its idea of wellbeing to the world.
Try cladmag for free!
Sign up with CLAD to receive our regular ezine, instant news alerts, free digital subscriptions to CLADweek, CLADmag and CLADbook and to request a free sample of the next issue of CLADmag.
sign up
features
The book was published in 2019 by RIBA Publishing
Elina Grigoriou
"Temperature, noise level and colour affect our stress levels. As designers we should be asking ourselves, how do these things match up?"

The London-based interior designer and wellness expert hopes her new book will help readers understand how to design with wellbeing in mind

The Royal Pool and Spa Suite has a private bio-sauna, steam sauna and jacuzzi
"Wellness embraces the entire holiday experience"

The design of the newly-opened Lefay Resort and Spa Dolomitti in Italy aims to celebrate and protect its spectacular surroundings

Polizzi worked closely with architect and designer Tommaso Ziffer on Hotel de la Ville in Rome
Olga Polizzi is director of design for Rocco Forte Hotels and also owns two of her own hotels
"On Via Sistina, everything breathes history. At the same time I wanted to reflect the modern hunger for the fantastical - Tommaso Ziffer"

Following the highly anticipated launch of Rome’s Hotel de la Ville, Rocco Forte’s director of design reflects on a fascinating project

Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
To advertise in our catalogue gallery: call +44(0)1462 431385
features
The Center for Sustainable Landscapes in Pittsburgh, US
José Almiñana
"We are committed to designing evocative landscapes informed by the best environmental science"

The Andropogon principal on pushing the boundaries of landscape design for the benefit of humans and nature

Marianne Shillingford
"The technology involved in paint is extraordinary"

Used cleverly, colour has the power to influence how people use the spaces they inhabit, says the creative director of Dulux

features
Tina Norden
"We have created an approach which is playful, provocative but also functional"

Conran and Partners’ Tina Norden on playing with colour at Prague’s newly redesigned Hotel Maximilian

A yoga platform offers views of the spectacular scenery
"Sam was such a champion for the team, and my goal is simply to carry that same torch"

As Blackberry Mountain resort opens in Tennessee, we find out why the project is a deeply personal one for owner Mary Celeste Beall

cladkit product news
Ritz Carlton co-founder joins Frontline Summit 2020 as keynote speaker
Hospitality veteran and Ritz Carlton co-founder, Horst Schulze, who brings more than 65 years’ experience to the table, has been announced as a keynote
Megan Whitby
Frontline work has never been more important and frontline workers are the largest class of workers on the planet, as ...
Painting with Light pushes boundaries to create unforgettable visual concepts
The team combines lighting, video, sound and special effects, with scenic and architectural elements, to create unforgettable visual experiences
Megan Whitby
Belgium-based light and video design studio, Painting with Light, will translate the story of your location into a visual experience, ...
Christie laser projectors power new Five Senses Bubble dome theatre
The dome aims to integrate technology with arts and culture
Magali Robathan
Christie® GS Series 1DLP® laser projectors are delivering vivid and lifelike visuals in a new dome theatre located in Xiong’an ...
cladkit product news
LianTronics’ glasses-free 3D Star Trek LED screen attracts attention
Magali Robathan
LianTronics’ giant curved LED wall with stunning glasses-less 3D spaceship display effect has attracted many on the street of Chengdu, ...
Cosm unveils Experience Centre with ‘one of a kind’ LED dome
The new Experience Centre houses a 20m LED dome
Magali Robathan
Cosm, a global technology company that builds end-to-end solutions for immersive experiences, has unveiled its Experience Centre which houses a ...
Siminetti unveils first glimpses of Mother of Pearl decorative surfaces inspired by the four seasons
The new winter design is finished with naturally occurring hexagonal patterns found in snowflakes
Megan Whitby
Siminetti has collaborated with British designer Chrisanna London to create a luxury Mother of Pearl decorative surface range inspired by ...
cladkit product news
Atelier Alain Ellouz launches handcrafted precious stone lighting collection
LYRA has a sleek, cylindrical design complete with an elegant brass dimming switch
Megan Whitby
LYRA, GAMA, MONA and ATHENA are the first pieces from designer Atelier Alain Ellouz’s new.édition collection of handcrafted stone lighting ...
Móz Designs columns anchor the world’s largest indoor aquarium
The design of the columns was inspired by the sea
Magali Robathan
After a two-year renovation, Oakland-based metal experts Móz Designs have unveiled their inclusion in Georgia Aquarium’s new shark gallery. Located ...
ASPA International launches handheld UV-C light disinfection lamp
The compact plug-in product can be used easily in a commercial spa or domestic setting to disinfect surfaces with UV-C light
Megan Whitby
For over 30 years, ASPA International has designed and built high-quality spas for the hotel, health and wellness sectors. During ...
x
Sign up with CLAD for regular news updates