New ‘City’ Elysium Planned in Spain

The development proposes a from-scratch sustainable community built on brand new land at the edge of a reservoir.

1 minute read

October 16, 2023, 11:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

Rendering of Elysium, Spain city built on brnd new land.

Elysium / Elysium

In the tradition of built-from-scratch ‘cities,’ a new development in Spain purports to be Europe’s first foray into the literal construction of new land on the edge of a reservoir, reports Elissaveta M. Brandon in Fast Company.

Elysium City, as it is called, is billed as Europe’s first circular city to be built from the ground up, following a masterplan by global architecture firm Gensler. It will span 2,900 acres (about 4.5 square miles) and is expected to be completed in 20 years, with the first phase opening in about 5.

The article notes the similarities to Saudi Arabi’s Neom. “Both are described as sustainable havens with solar farms, a rail network, and electric vehicles.” However, Brandon explains that Elysium could avoid some of the pitfalls of Neom. For one, “It promises to work with nature, not against it.”

Originally conceived as a glittering luxury gambling haven—“Eurovegas”—the project was reimagined after the Covid-19 pandemic as a solar-powered, all-electric, sustainable community. But “construction is set to begin on the most economically profitable district of them all—entertainment—because [developer Francisco Nuchera] faced pressured from the local government to create jobs.” This means “the city will most likely look like Eurovegas before it looks like Elysium.”

Sunday, October 15, 2023 in Fast Company

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