“Eighty miles southwest of Beijing, the Chinese government is planning a new five-million person city as a model of sustainability—powered by clean energy, featuring huge green spaces, and unsullied by many cars. A new design shows what neighborhoods in the city, called Xiong’an New Area, might look like.
City blocks would surround courtyards with native plants and garden plots. Apartments, designed for people of all income levels and ages, have large balconies with built-in boxes for gardening; greenhouses with vertical farms sit on the roofs, next to rooftop homes with gardens of their own. The wooden buildings, designed to use 80% less energy than typical buildings, use on-site solar power. Most streets are designed to prioritize people on bikes and on foot, not cars.
Called a ‘self-sufficient city,’ the design also responds to the pandemic. Apartments are designed with space to work from home in future outbreaks; if the lockdown isn’t as strict, people can use coworking spaces in each apartment building. The abundance of onsite food production offers fresh daily produce. Terraces give each apartment private outdoor space, and are designed to have a landing zone for future drone deliveries. Manufacturing spaces in the building give residents access to 3D printers and other tools, so they can make parts for repairs in their unit without leaving home.”