South Korea Is Designing a Floating City That Can House 12,000 People

The city will be built on thick, hollow platforms that are made of concrete and trap air underneath them to keep the whole mechanism afloat.

Busan floating city mockup: an island with a building

The floating platforms are designed to withstand the weight of five-story buildings, per developers.

OCEANIX/BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group

“The depth of the platform provides a big space in the hull, almost like a basement that contains mostly air to counteract the forces of the weight of the buildings on top,” Daniel Sundlin, a partner at BIG, told Insider.

The space also functions as a storage area for energy storage and waste-management systems, Sundlin said.

A mooring system connects the platforms to the seafloor to minimize lateral movements, Matteo Pietrobelli, the chief engineer at Oceanix, told Insider. However, the system will be able to move up and down.

“That’s why we call it flood-proof: As the water rises, the platforms can float and their foundations will also adapt to the water level,” Pietrobelli continued.

The platforms’ design takes into consideration the comfort levels of people onboard, Pietrobelli said.

“It’s almost as if you are on land even when you have the highest waves, which means when you have no waves, you actually don’t even feel it. There’s nothing to feel,” he added. “Nobody’s going to feel sick on it.”

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