A conversation over at the Utility vs. Fun post reminded me of an idea I had years ago. Note that this post is for fun only, and we live in a world that’s far too serious to ever implement such a plan.
Spinland would be a completely constructed city, built on a body of water. In this case I’ve chosen the north end of Lake Washington, as this will also provide a new pedestrian means of crossing the lake. The inner portion of the city will float and turn using power from incoming water (additional hydro power can likely be generated). It will turn very slowly, specifically three times per day (around 0.4 mph at the edge for this size city).
Residences will be located outside the spinning area, and clustered together. Businesses will be located on the spinning disk, and will also be clustered together. A cluster of offices will pass a cluster of homes at 8am, and again at 4pm. There will be clusters of retail areas, schools, and other services also located on the disk.
The result will be a city that does the commuting for you. All kinds of businesses, restaurants, and retail will turn past your home three times a day. Your commute will always be very short, and working late just means you have to walk further.
There are downsides. You obviously would have to move homes when you move jobs to a new cluster, and it would be most convenient if your spouse worked in the same cluster. And then there’s the cost of building an entire floating city. And we’d have to make sure the salmon were happy. But it sounds like a good life to me.
(note: if someone ever tells you that transit activists are engaged in social engineering, feel free to laugh at them then point to this)