The futuristic Houston Dome project is creating a big buzz in the online community for its amazing design and controversial impact to human society. Some experts say it will help save United States’ 4th largest city from natural disasters such as extreme heat and violent hurricanes. On the other hand, human rights activists believe this is a huge prison that will curtail freedom.
As featured in Discovery Channel, a team of engineers believe the only strategy to save the troubled city is to move it indoors. It’s estimated that this dome is around 21 million sq feet – making it the biggest structure with roof in the whole world.
House Dome project will use panels over 147,000 panels to cover the city but the main concern is that using using glass or plexiglass would make the whole dome extremely heavy and dangerous to the people. The solution is to use ethylene tetra fluoro ethylene (ETFE) – a lightweight transparent and very strong polymer that can withstand strong winds of 180 miles per hour.
To date, the project remains a concept due to so many variables as well as technical and social issues to consider. For one, financial issue is one of the biggest concern for it will cost billions of dollars not to mention the time to make this dream a reality.
I’ve found an interesting video about this Houston Dome project and its social issues.