China is home to some of the oldest cultures and civilizations in the world. However, it has a firm eye on the future as well. In fact, it has been vocal about its ambitions to lead the world in futuristic technology and innovation. As a result, China has been actively seeking to innovate and modernize its infrastructure and its processes across all sectors. Chinese urban planning seems to be following the same trajectory.
The major cities have undergone a remarkable overhaul over the past decade and transformed themselves into global cities of repute. The Chinese government, as well as the private sector, has constantly been pouring resources into their cities over the last past few years, and they are not done yet. They aim to make Chinese cities future urban hubs of the world.
Besides China’s ambitions to be a technological leader of the world, these efforts are also driven by the demographic changes that have been predicted for the coming years. There has been massive urbanization in the past decades as China successfully pulled billions out of poverty. The trend will only continue to grow as China continues to rise economically. Predictions suggest that almost 75% of the Chinese population will come to inhabit the cities by the mid of this century.
As a result, China needs to prepare its cities with modern and sustainable solutions. Clearly, smart solutions such as those that incorporate AI, the Internet of Things, big data, and renewable sources of energy are the way forward. With full-throttle government backing and a vibrant startup culture at home, Chinese tech startups are increasingly churning out ideas and technologies for future global cities.
Flying cars have always caught the fancy of urban dwellers. It is no more the stuff of science fiction literature. A Chinese company has already introduced Ehang 184, a drone quadcopter that will be the new mode of conveyance in the futuristic cities. It has the capacity to seat a person that weighs up to 220 pounds and transport him to any destination within 40 miles, all on a single charge. The drone will be autonomous mostly but will be monitored by a control center on the ground.
Futuristic high-speed rails are another option. The China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation (CASIC) is already working on the concept. The train concept is similar to the Hyperloop concept by TESLA. It is based on passenger pods, magnetic levitation, and a vacuum tube. It is envisioned that it would be able to reach tops speeds of 400 km per hour – that is almost 3 times the speed of light.
These are just some of the innovative technologies and concepts that are being developed for the futuristic global cities that China aims to build.