London - Floating around the globe, drifting from country to country, never staying in one place long enough to get bored …
If you like travelling, life on the Freedom Ship, the world’s first floating city, sounds perfect.
There’s only a couple of hitches – it’s not built yet, and it’s going to look an awful lot like a multi-storey carpark when it is.
Its designers have released computer-generated photographs of what they hope the mile-long vessel will look like.
It would have enough room for 50 000 permanent residents within its 25 storeys and boasts schools, hospitals, art galleries, shops, parks, an aquarium and a casino. It would even have its own airport on the roof, with a runway serving small private and commercial aircraft carrying up to 40 passengers each.
Roger M Gooch, director and vice-president of Florida-based firm Freedom Ship International, said: “The Freedom Ship will be the largest vessel ever built, and the first ever floating city.”
His company is trying to raise the estimated £6-billion needed to turn the dream, which has been several years in the planning, into an ocean-going reality.
“This will be a very heavily capitalised project and the global economy in the last few years hasn’t been too inviting for unproven progressive projects like ours,” he added.
“[But] in the last six months we’ve been getting more interest in the project and we are hopeful we will raise the $1-billion to begin construction.” The ship would spend 70 percent of its time anchored off major cities and the rest sailing between countries.
Powered by solar panels and wave energy, the city would navigate from the east coast of the US across the Atlantic to Europe and into the Mediterranean.
It would loop back and sail around the Cape of Good Hope at the tip of Africa and across to Australia. Heading into East Asia, it would steer across the Pacific before spending the end of the year on the west coast of North America. It would chase the summer sun into South America.
If completed, the city will be 750ft at the beam, 350ft high and 4,500ft in length – more than three times longer than the Queen Mary II cruise ship.
2.7m Weight of Freedom Ship in tons
50 000 Number of permanent residents on board
20 000 Number of crew the ship would require
1.7m Size of shopping mall in square feet
2 Number of times the ship would circumnavigate the globe each year
£6bn Estimated cost of construction - Daily Mail