Setting Sail on Innovation: An Overview of Maldives’ Floating City


The Maldivian government has decided to make their entire city float! You heard that right! The whole 500-acre city will float on the North Central Indian Ocean. That’s like the most awe-inspiring biblical miracle we’ve heard lately. This will be the first of a new era of floating lagoons that are ecologically adept and architecturally novel. Curious to know more? Read on! 


This is a journey to the future, right in the heart of the Indian Ocean! Just picture yourself cosily tucked in your bed while the whole city is floating atop the ocean and dancing with the tides. It could feel like being in the midst of a natural disaster or, perhaps, your sibling simply pulling a prank on you. However you feel, it is simply Mother Nature greeting you with calm and rocking your city with its tides.

This is not a dream but the bold reality of Maldives pioneering. Faced with a climate crisis in which the city was at an alarming threat of completely submerging under the water, the authorities, instead of bowing down to the threat, thought, “Why not float over the problem?” 

So, it does indeed feel like a Biblical miracle. Jesus walked on water. Well, Maldives made a whole city float. This isn’t just a bold twist on urban planning; it’s a daring poke at the very notion of what’s possible. New York, Tokyo, and Venice—cities also grappling with the threat of rising waters—might want to take a page out of the Maldives’ playbook. 

Brain Coral: The Inspiration and Innovation



You would think it must have taken a dozen Bob The Bulders and a few Steve Zissous to come up with something so out-of-the-box. Well, the brilliant developer Dutch Docklands and the architects at Waterstudio have devised this ingenious plan inspired by the natural design of brain corals.

Brain Corals are marine organisms known for their complex and resilient structures. This innovative urban planning incorporates cutting-edge engineering with biomimicry to craft an impressive sustainable and adaptive living environment.

The hexagonal buildings are technologically designed to maximise stability and interconnectivity. They are placed carefully on the ocean floor using a sophisticated system, allowing them to rise and fall with the tides, adapting to various situations without compromising their structure – so you can always have a good night’s sleep.

But it’s not just about floating around. This city is smart, too, running on sunshine and rainwater and improving the ocean’s health. It’s a self-sustaining marvel, equipped to handle its waste, grow its food, and generate its power while making less impact on our planet. Think of it as a city that not only floats but also flouts the traditional rules of urban living.

A Sneak-Peek Into The Design


Source: Dezeen

‘Rise with the tide’ – a phrase that transitioned from idiom to reality!

The exterior structure borrows the form of Brain Corals and is characterised by a hexagonal pattern. These platforms are connected to each other, forming a big network that can house up to 20,000 people. Like magic, these platforms can float and move up and down with the water, keeping everyone safe from flooding. The well-detailed maze-like pattern offers extended aesthetic appeal and structural stability.

Exterior Design

  • Modular Units: The floating units are assembled like a jigsaw puzzle. This modular approach allows for easy expansion and reconfiguration as needed​​. 
  • Stability and Flexibility: A futuristic and sophisticated mooring system anchors the modules to the seabed. This allows the modules to rise and fall efficiently with the tides, stabilising the structure in varied ocean conditions.
  • Sustainable Materials: The construction uses eco-friendly materials such as recycled plastics, reclaimed wood, bamboo, eco-conscious concrete, etc., to withstand harsh marine environments while minimising environmental impact​​.

Interior Design

  • Modern Residences: Spacious residential units incorporating large windows allow ample natural light to permeate the space. Owing to the modern and open-concept design, living here would be a serene and peaceful experience.
  • Eco-Friendly Materials: The interiors have been constructed using eco-friendly materials such as reclaimed wood, recycled metals, and sustainable textiles. This way, the overall atmosphere is adorned with a warm invite and reduced environmental impact.
  • Smart Home Technology: Each residence uses smart home technology to enhance convenience and energy efficiency. Residents can remotely control lighting, temperature, and security systems via mobile apps.

This new project will enhance safety and development in the Maldives through a blend of green technology, commercial potential, and an exciting new lifestyle, setting the stage for future floating cities. This innovative city exists above and below the water, fostering blue habitats that help coral grow. Artificial coral banks under the city encourage natural coral growth. The submerged coral reefs act as natural wave breakers, and together with a network of floating structures, they ensure safety and comfort for its residents.

Rising Above: Maldives’ Blueprint for a Climate-Resilient Future


Source: Times NIE

The floating marvel is located close to Male, practically a stone’s throw from the airport.

Spanning a whopping 200 hectares (over 500 acres for those who skipped geography), this lagoon is not just big; it’s ginormous! It’s brimming with thousands of floating homes, each one having waterfront views that will make your Instagram followers green with envy.

But wait, there’s more! It’s a mixed bag of goodies with residential spaces, hotels, shops, and restaurants. Basically, it is everything you need for that deluxe Robinson Crusoe lifestyle.

Top 10 Features of Maldives Floating Lagoon

  • Legal Stuff: Every floating home is as legit as it gets. Recognised as real estate, these pads are primed for financing and insuring. Welcome to your water-world address!
  • Modular Magic: Building a city on water? You bet it’s modular! This ensures everything from quality control to zippy construction times, like LEGO, for luxe living.
  • Come Aboard Easily: Accessibility is key. This lagoon has more entry points than a beehive, ensuring everyone can swarm in and out without a fuss.
  • Power Up!: The city isn’t just floating; it’s flowing with energy. Reduced consumption and a smart grid system mean it’s green and gleaming with blue energy.
  • Smart Supplies & Waste Not: The floating utopia runs on a slick supply and waste management system. Think of it as the city’s metabolism, keeping us clean, green, and serene.
  • Eco-Extraordinaire: The city plays nice with Mother Nature. Structures are designed to let sunlight dance down to the seabed, enhancing underwater life, not hindering it.
  • Stable & Safe: Built to withstand Mother Nature’s mood swings. The mooring system is so enhanced it laughs in the face of storms.
  • Law, Order, and Floating Freedom: Safety first, fun second. The floating city is a bastion of peace and protection, thanks to its sturdy framework of laws and defences.
  • Community Vibes: This isn’t just a place to live; it’s a living, breathing community. Flexibility is the middle name, adapting to future surprises with ease.
  • Rapid Response: More than just structures, the community thrives on shared goals and cultural vibes. It’s all about creating a space where life is lived and enjoyed.



Source: Waterstudio

The Maldives floating city is more than a solution; it’s proof of human ingenuity, demonstrating that innovative approaches can meet modern challenges.

The Maldives has embraced the idea of fixing problems and adapting to them. This place, vulnerable to the climate crisis, has pioneered a way to live with the water that goes beyond mere survival—it thrives on it. It demonstrates that the most daunting challenges can inspire groundbreaking innovations.

What’s your view on this? Will this innovative approach succeed or end up as another failed experiment? Let’s keep this conversation going and see where this wave of innovation might take us.

Satyam Sachdeva Satyam’s knack for writing developed when he read The Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini. The book made him realise how simple words can impact a human’s mind. Always outside the classroom, he was on a mission to use his marketing and content writing skills to impact people's lives. His expertise is not only mere writing but also making the reader delve deep into it. He might say No to everything except a Chai Break. At night, you might never find him in his room because a night drive is something he always craves.
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