Optimal Settlement Size and Masterplan Strategies

Part of the Lecture Notes in Civil Engineering book series (LNCE, volume 82)


This chapter studies the optimal sizes of flotillas, which attempt a circular economy involving aquaponics production and fish farming to support population sizes adequately sustained by renewable sources of technology. Estimates of capacity are made from specialized vessels designed for accommodation, food production, waste management and medical care. These are then grouped into flotillas for 40,000 persons to be agglomerated into entire settlements. The vessels will each form elements of water-townscapes where city square is interpreted as a water court between vessels docked in specific configurations; water foyers beneath semi-submersible decks used as outdoor living spaces; and wharfs for recreation and commerce. Combinations of flotilla forms generate variants of entire settlements using jack-ups for up to 40 m depth of water and semi-submersibles for deepwater locations. The population densities of these settlements are compared with those of current floating cities, township densities in Singapore and other high-density cities. Using UNESCO guidelines for offshore settlements to estimate the spacing between settlements, these autonomous settlement fleets conceived as sea-cities, occupy 38 km2 of sea space and are an alternative to land-based mega cities accommodating 100,000 persons per km2. 20% of the projected population in the year 2025 can be accommodated on 6,510 oil rig settlements spaced 240 km2 apart over 54.25 M km2 of sea. Related to high-density settlements is the concern with environmental quality through the provision of public space. One indicator is the rate of recreational area per person. The space standards of each marine inhabitant—at 50 m2 recreational area per person—exceeds 27 m2 in London, is equivalent to Amsterdam, with one settlement type reaching 115 m per person equivalent to Vienna. Singapore by comparison, has 65 m2 of recreational area per person.


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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2021

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Design and EnvironmentNational University of SingaporeSingaporeSingapore

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