Could this be the future of human civilization, post climate catastrophe? London designer Phil Pauley envisions underwater cities – or, more accurately, small communities – wherein everything that’s needed to support roughly one hundred inhabitants is grown, created or processed onboard. Sub-Biosphere 2 is the product of 20 years of research, and though the designer is also a sci-fi writer, he sees the city as much more than just a fantasy concept.
The 1,105-foot-wide structure consists of eight smaller bio-domes encircling a central support biosphere. The pods would hold dwellings, an observation center, and areas for producing energy, growing food and processing water and waste. The idea is that there would be no need for any kind of sustenance from the outside world, making the city almost entirely self-sustainable (we’re assuming they would need things like building materials from other locations.)
A video shows the spheres ascending and descending from the surface of the sea to the ocean floor via a metal frame structure. Pauley says the biosphere would “recreate Earth’s atmosphere – the regions of the land, sea and air which hold life” and also act as a global seed bank. The 100 people living onboard would be sufficient “to rebuild our species in the event of a catastrophic natural disaster.”
“Land-based events have wreaked havoc on life on Earth before, in the case of dinosaurs and in more localized events such as supervolcanic eruptions and pandemics,” says the designer. “If we cannot avoid a runaway greenhouse effect, it may be that we may be safer living under the sea in the long-term.”