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Old 4th January 2014, 01:10 AM   #161
L.Y.S.
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Originally Posted by Lukraak_Sisser View Post
There is also the fact that savings on electricity would quite likely be negated by the fact that the vast majority of an arcology would not have access to natural light and thus require artificial lighting 24/7.
You're thinking completely wrong. The vast majority of the structure will be built using strong and durable translucent materials. The point is to let as much natural light through as possible. This will dramatically cut down on the cost of lighting. I've shown a number of structures which already conform to this model. Open spaces for parks and recreation centers are a big part of the equation. People can't just be stranded in a building all day. Space to play, walk, and stay fit will also be important to maintaining a healthy populace.

The arcologies of blade runner have become obsolete. Gone are the days of claustrophobic and inhumane arcologies, and in with the new spacious and aesthetically pleasing arcologies.
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Old 4th January 2014, 03:39 AM   #162
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Originally Posted by L.Y.S. View Post
You're thinking completely wrong. The vast majority of the structure will be built using strong and durable translucent materials. The point is to let as much natural light through as possible. This will dramatically cut down on the cost of lighting. I've shown a number of structures which already conform to this model. Open spaces for parks and recreation centers are a big part of the equation. People can't just be stranded in a building all day. Space to play, walk, and stay fit will also be important to maintaining a healthy populace.

The arcologies of blade runner have become obsolete. Gone are the days of claustrophobic and inhumane arcologies, and in with the new spacious and aesthetically pleasing arcologies.
But there are people living in these arcologies, right? Won't the person living on the externally facing wall of the arcology block the sunlight from the person one unit in (and everyone else further in)? Or will his carpets and furniture and paintings also be translucent?
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Old 4th January 2014, 04:41 AM   #163
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Originally Posted by L.Y.S. View Post
You're thinking completely wrong. The vast majority of the structure will be built using strong and durable translucent materials. The point is to let as much natural light through as possible. This will dramatically cut down on the cost of lighting. I've shown a number of structures which already conform to this model. Open spaces for parks and recreation centers are a big part of the equation. People can't just be stranded in a building all day. Space to play, walk, and stay fit will also be important to maintaining a healthy populace.

The arcologies of blade runner have become obsolete. Gone are the days of claustrophobic and inhumane arcologies, and in with the new spacious and aesthetically pleasing arcologies.
I quite prefer it when my neighbours can NOT see into my house from every direction.
Apart from the occasional extrovert person I suspect the vast majority of humans want this. So any house is going to block light. Therefore the inner housing will not get natural daylight.
This is already a problem in most cities. Living on the ground floor between a large number of multi story houses means virtually no daylight. Putting all the housing and offices closer together will compound this problem.

Also, letting in enormous amounts of daylight also means letting in a lot of heat. I've worked in a mostly glass building in Manchester UK and even there the temperature in summer could easily reach 35C. So even IF everyone would want to be able to see trough their houses and offices, you're decreasing the surface to internal ratio leading to the necessity of airconditioning in areas of the world where this would normally not be an issue. Again costing large amounts of energy.
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Old 4th January 2014, 10:02 AM   #164
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
That's a viable solution for that problem, but I suspect that in that case transportation problems within the arcology will be much greater than those within modern cities.
Like some of the things that LYS is proposing, that suggestion of mine doesn't have to be taken to the extreme to be useful.
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Old 8th January 2014, 04:13 PM   #165
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
We can also discuss that issue. But I don't see why you're unwilling to first finish with this one. Again, do you agree that arcologies cannot save a meaningful amount of agricultural land due to land saved in living space as compared to modern high rise apartment buildings?
Perhaps, but the ability to grow food and house the population in the same space will be quite revolutionary and will at least save land to a reasonable extent in comparison to what is taking place today. However, I will concede that it may not be as efficient as I would like for now.


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To some extent. But if you tried to build a 10,000 story building the cost of plumbing would be higher than with one thousand ten story buildings.

It all goes back to how it's constructed and what materials are used.


Quote:
I actually agree with you, at least that at some point sci-fi technologies will dramatically bring down building costs. I think your time scale is a little optimistic, and also that the technologies involved may be different what you mention, but nevertheless, I can buy the idea of sci-fi buildings. That doesn't show that there's any advantage to arcologies, only that they could potentially exist. But in what way are they useful?
The technologies for arcologies are being built now as we speak.

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To save on energy? Please explain how.
To save on pollution? Please explain how.
In some other way? Please explain how.

Energy- All energy needs are being produced nearby and have much shorter distances to travel and disperse. Smart grid and energy management will be much easier because all energy needs are in one central location.

Pollution- Elimination of cars and roads, food grown locally and distributed within the building lorries are no longer needed to haul food across vast distances.

Food costs will dramatically drop because food has a lot less travel from farm to plate.

Food can be grown nearly all year around in even the most harsh climates.

Saves time- People work where they live so a much lower travel time to work.

More efficient transportation, because the system will use 24 hour shafts that will travel up, down, and across the arcology. Personal transport will become irrelevant.

Farm land could be allowed to return back to its natural state and wild populations allowed to return to their original ranges.
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Old 8th January 2014, 04:42 PM   #166
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Originally Posted by L.Y.S. View Post
Food costs will dramatically drop because food has a lot less travel from farm to plate.
The cost of transportation is an utterly negligible component of modern food costs. Did you know that?
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Old 8th January 2014, 07:17 PM   #167
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Originally Posted by L.Y.S. View Post
The technologies for arcologies are being built now as we speak.
Name some.

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Energy- All energy needs are being produced nearby and have much shorter distances to travel and disperse. Smart grid and energy management will be much easier because all energy needs are in one central location.
I don't see how any of this is true. What energy sources are you talking about? Nuclear? You put nuclear power far from cities, not near them. Renewables? Wind and solar need to spread out, you can't concentrate them. Hydro and geothermal can't be relocated, they are where they are and you transmit power to where you need it. A "smart grid" means that you are moving electricity long distances.

And: why bother? Do you know what fraction of the world's electricity is lost to transmission problems?

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Pollution- Elimination of cars
Fine, but carless cities can do that too.

Quote:
and roads,
You still have roads, you didn't eliminate them. You just put them inside your arcology, instead of outside, and you called them "hallways" instead of roads. It takes a lot of hallways to move a million people around.

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food grown locally
...

Food can be grown nearly all year around in even the most harsh climates.
Oh, I see, you're growing the food indoors? Wow. So your million-person-living-space arcology is really space for a million people, plus space for a million-person-capacity hydroponic farm. I estimate it would take 100 kW of electricity to artificially illuminate a garden plot that will feed one person. Your million-person arcology requires 100 GW of power for farm lighting alone. Are these numbers sinking in, LYS? Your arcology resident is now consuming a million kWh per year---eighty times what today's McMansion-loving Americans need---to illuminate your indoor farms.

Your right hand is all excited about saving tiny margins on power grid management (where we lose 5% of electricity today) and food transport (2% of food energy today) and then you clock in -8000% by putting your farms indoors. (No, the light can't all come in through windows or atriums.) Crazy. Either you're in a world where energy is constrained, or you're not. You're trying to be both.

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Saves time- People work where they live so a much lower travel time to work.
I won't argue with that.

LYS, I appreciate that you're having fun thinking about this using sci-fi imagination to fill in all of the gaps. Can I suggest that you might also enjoy learning about real-world housing, transportation, energy, and land-use issues?
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Old 8th January 2014, 08:10 PM   #168
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Originally Posted by L.Y.S. View Post

Food costs will dramatically drop because food has a lot less travel from farm to plate.

Food can be grown nearly all year around in even the most harsh climates.
Sorry,

1) It is unhealthy to grow animal foods indoors in close proximity to people.
2) Even with travel costs it is cheaper to grow outside on good farmland.
3) In order for an arc to even come close to meeting all the food needs of the people living there it would have to be an arc many times larger increasing construction costs as well.
4) Indoor year round growing of crops is very expensive in both artificial inputs and energy costs which are in most cases also sources of pollution.
5) Pest control is also much higher due to the potential for frequent plague level outbreaks of pests like whiteflies, fungus gnats, aphids etc....

Your ideas about food on arcs are unreasonable. Yes you could have a little fresh veggies or some such for your salads, but actually make a significant dent in the total food needed? Not even close.
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Old 8th January 2014, 10:46 PM   #169
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Engineers sometimes say that a certain (sometimes brilliant) invention is a "solution looking for a problem". I think arcologies are a solution (They're big! They're megastructures! They're futuristic!) that LYS likes for its own sake, but he's still looking for the problem.

Arcologies aren't, by themselves, really a solution to overpopulation. Nor land-use generally. They don't solve food problems. They don't fix the energy crisis. It's not obvious what they do for transportation.

(Yes, you can ALSO invent an energy-crisis solution---fusion power and no private cars!---and say the arcology will use that. But if we've invented that, we can implement it without the arcology. Likewise if we've invented magic low-light farming. Likewise if we've invented cheap carbon nanotube construction---won't that, by itself, solve many urban problems? (Imagine if laying elevated-train track were as cheap as laying asphalt.) Likewise if we've invented any of the government planning, management, coersion, etc that arcology-imaginers take for granted.
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Old 9th January 2014, 09:35 AM   #170
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Originally Posted by L.Y.S. View Post
The issue of inflexibility has been fixed by having a flexible building system which only builds the height necessary for the given population. So an arcology could theoretically start out at a given population of 250,000 people at .25 miles, and slowly expand all the way up to 1 million per 1 mile.
Just getting back to this point, I'm a little confused. One of your stated problems with cities is essentially that they grow, taking up more land. You start with a small town and it grows outwards and upwards until it's a big city. In place of this, you now propose an arcology which would start out as a small arcology, then grow outwards and upwards as it needed to accommodate more people. The part I'm confused about is where, exactly, you think there is a difference here. If the problem with cities is that they keep growing as population increases, proposing something else that will also keep growing as population increases is not a solution. On the other hand, if the growth is not a problem in and of itself, there seems to be no reason to have made this point at all.

Or to put it another way, we already have a flexible building system which only builds the height necessary for a given population. It's just that pretty much the entire world disagrees with you on what that necessary height is.
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Old 10th January 2014, 10:39 PM   #171
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Originally Posted by Cuddles View Post
Just getting back to this point, I'm a little confused. One of your stated problems with cities is essentially that they grow, taking up more land. You start with a small town and it grows outwards and upwards until it's a big city. In place of this, you now propose an arcology which would start out as a small arcology, then grow outwards and upwards as it needed to accommodate more people. The part I'm confused about is where, exactly, you think there is a difference here. If the problem with cities is that they keep growing as population increases, proposing something else that will also keep growing as population increases is not a solution. On the other hand, if the growth is not a problem in and of itself, there seems to be no reason to have made this point at all.

Or to put it another way, we already have a flexible building system which only builds the height necessary for a given population. It's just that pretty much the entire world disagrees with you on what that necessary height is.

I can understand the confusion. The basic concept is to expand upwards instead of outwards. So for instance, buildings would start off at a certain height, and would grow upwards as population grows.

So for instance, if the initial goal of a newly built arcology was to house 250,000 people, they would build a quarter mile in the air. Once the max population is near capacity, the building could be expanded to half a mile to support 500,000 people. So instead of expanding outward, the goal is to expand upward and contain growth.
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Old 10th January 2014, 10:49 PM   #172
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Originally Posted by Red Baron Farms View Post
1) It is unhealthy to grow animal foods indoors in close proximity to people.
Something I sympathize with, maybe a vertical farm would be in order. I imagine that a vertical farm with many open air terraces would be an efficient way to grow food.

Originally Posted by Red Baron Farms View Post
2) Even with travel costs it is cheaper to grow outside on good farmland.
The goal of many urban produce markets is to eliminate the need of having to drive food into a city. A farm within a city would drastically eliminate the time that food takes to travel to plate.

Originally Posted by Red Baron Farms View Post
3) In order for an arc to even come close to meeting all the food needs of the people living there it would have to be an arc many times larger increasing construction costs as well.
No, many newer arcs include outdoor terraces and greenhouses. A mixed use building is preferred and would serve a practical purpose.

Originally Posted by Red Baron Farms View Post
4) Indoor year round growing of crops is very expensive in both artificial inputs and energy costs which are in most cases also sources of pollution.
It depends on the methods being used. Clearly growing in traditional brick and motor conditions are less efficient than growing in greenhouse conditions. A healthy synthetic farm soup could be created to house vegetables.

Originally Posted by Red Baron Farms View Post
5) Pest control is also much higher due to the potential for frequent plague level outbreaks of pests like whiteflies, fungus gnats, aphids etc....
Two completely separate compartments of the building. One sealed to the point that only select personnel will be allowed in that portion of the building.

Originally Posted by Red Baron Farms View Post
Your ideas about food on arcs are unreasonable. Yes you could have a little fresh veggies or some such for your salads, but actually make a significant dent in the total food needed? Not even close.
I would disagree. Modern growing techniques are prohibitive, but if superior technique arise in vertical farming, then it could very well make the difference and make it more cost effective to grow food in doors.
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Old 10th January 2014, 11:17 PM   #173
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Originally Posted by L.Y.S. View Post
The goal of many urban produce markets is to eliminate the need of having to drive food into a city. A farm within a city would drastically eliminate the time that food takes to travel to plate.
Why is food-travel-time a problem that needs solving?

You seem to contradict yourself. "Terraces, greenhouses, mixed use" sounds like the farms serve as relaxing open space for the sardines arcology residents. "sealed compartments" sounds like the opposite.

Quote:
No, many newer arcs include outdoor terraces and greenhouses. A mixed use building is preferred and would serve a practical purpose.

Two completely separate compartments of the building. One sealed to the point that only select personnel will be allowed in that portion of the building.
Also, you previously you said that the building was made of translucent materials to let light in. Farms, greenhouses, and terraces are not transparent. The point of a greenhouse is to get light onto the plants, which absorb it. If the plants are absorbing the light, then the living space below the plants is dark.
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Old 10th January 2014, 11:42 PM   #174
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Originally Posted by ben m View Post
Also, you previously you said that the building was made of translucent materials to let light in. Farms, greenhouses, and terraces are not transparent. The point of a greenhouse is to get light onto the plants, which absorb it. If the plants are absorbing the light, then the living space below the plants is dark.
And, as I know is obvious to you but seems to be escaping LYS's awareness, so are the farms below. LYS, there is only so much light /square meter hitting the earth. A 2 story building's shadow at noon is the same as that of a 1 story building. Averaged over the course of a day, a 2 story building gets much less than twice as much sunlight as a 1 story building.

So, if we have a modern farm, which is basically open air and only 1 level, and we convert it to a 2 level vertical farm, we can have twice as much farmland, but much less than twice as much sunlight (maybe it will increase by 2%, at the expense of the farm next-door?). How do I ensure that my crops get enough light? I can put in artificial lighting, but now my farm is much more energy intensive in terms of calories of food/joule of energy input. I thought we were trying to save energy?
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Old 11th January 2014, 12:11 AM   #175
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Originally Posted by L.Y.S. View Post
Something I sympathize with, maybe a vertical farm would be in order. I imagine that a vertical farm with many open air terraces would be an efficient way to grow food.

As has been pointed out, a vertical farm is the opposite of efficient as only the top level gets a useable amount of light.

Originally Posted by L.Y.S. View Post
The goal of many urban produce markets is to eliminate the need of having to drive food into a city. A farm within a city would drastically eliminate the time that food takes to travel to plate.

But you still haven't shown that the costs spared by lower transport are not totally negated by the massively increased energy costs to keep the arcology temperature stable

Originally Posted by L.Y.S. View Post
No, many newer arcs include outdoor terraces and greenhouses. A mixed use building is preferred and would serve a practical purpose.

Making the inside dark

Originally Posted by L.Y.S. View Post
It depends on the methods being used. Clearly growing in traditional brick and motor conditions are less efficient than growing in greenhouse conditions. A healthy synthetic farm soup could be created to house vegetables.

Apart from the whole dark thing, have you ever BEEN in a greenhouse? Noone wants to live at those temperatures and that humidity, thus you now have an arcology that needs both heating and cooling.

Originally Posted by L.Y.S. View Post
Two completely separate compartments of the building. One sealed to the point that only select personnel will be allowed in that portion of the building.

As pointed out, this goes against your mixed building idea and that will only delay the inevitable problem. People make mistakes. No one but select personnel is supposed to enter the lion enclosure in a zoo, yet people still do.

Originally Posted by L.Y.S. View Post
I would disagree. Modern growing techniques are prohibitive, but if superior technique arise in vertical farming, then it could very well make the difference and make it more cost effective to grow food in doors.
Yes, if we could learn to farm with translucent plants then maybe. Or star trek replicators. But this is one more technology that isn't there now, nor in the foreseeable future.
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