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(Sub)urban life

19 April, 2021

In the week in which high streets sprang to life as many of us ventured out again, a new innovation in Singapore is banishing roads and parking spaces below ground, creating a new ‘forest town’.  

The area is an eco-development of 42,000 homes, where traffic is diverted away from high streets in favour of more green space above ground. An eco-haven, the town has more space for community farms, cycling and even has smart lights that turn off when no one is around.  

If that wasn’t enough, it also has a central cooling system that reduces carbon emissions, the town also transports chilled water through pipes to people’s homes as a less energy intensive alternative to air conditioning. 

Meanwhile, Elon Musk is working on underground super-highways in LA. Their design works by lifting cars down from the overground road to an underground network of road tunnels that transport them at 120mph. When they reach their destination, they are lifted back up above ground to re-join the traditional roads.  

We’re excited to see so many innovations and experiments being trialled to improve the quality of urban life, whilst having a positive impact on the environment. With tubes and metros well-integrated into many cities, why not drive underground too? 

By Cara McEvoy

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