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Architecture student imagines moving population of the Maldives onto oil rigs

Architecture student imagines ...
Architecture student Mayank Thammalla imagines moving around 400,000 people onto huge semi-submersible oil rigs
Architecture student Mayank Thammalla imagines moving around 400,000 people onto huge semi-submersible oil rigs
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Mayank Thammalla imagines relocating the Maldives' population of around 400,000 to huge semi-submersible oil rig
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Mayank Thammalla imagines relocating the Maldives' population of around 400,000 to huge semi-submersible oil rig
Taking the place of the Maldives' beautiful natural islands, the oil rigs would be veritable cities and include mosques, markets, and retail spaces, in addition to housing
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Taking the place of the Maldives' beautiful natural islands, the oil rigs would be veritable cities and include mosques, markets, and retail spaces, in addition to housing
Architecture student Mayank Thammalla imagines moving around 400,000 people onto huge semi-submersible oil rigs
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Architecture student Mayank Thammalla imagines moving around 400,000 people onto huge semi-submersible oil rigs
Though the oil rigs have no airport as such, existing helipads could be used for "island hopping"
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Though the oil rigs have no airport as such, existing helipads could be used for "island hopping"
The Swim or Sink project offers food-for-thought as to the role of architecture in combating climate change
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The Swim or Sink project offers food-for-thought as to the role of architecture in combating climate change
Mayank Thammalla also posits that his concept would protect the inhabitants from natural disasters like tsunamis
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Mayank Thammalla also posits that his concept would protect the inhabitants from natural disasters like tsunamis
While no sustainable technology is slated for the project, making them self-sufficient energy-wise and even food-wise would be a small hurdle compared to finding enough oil rigs to house such a large number of people
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While no sustainable technology is slated for the project, making them self-sufficient energy-wise and even food-wise would be a small hurdle compared to finding enough oil rigs to house such a large number of people
"I was interested in looking at the future of the Maldives because their situation is very unique," explains Thammalla
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"I was interested in looking at the future of the Maldives because their situation is very unique," explains Thammalla
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Taking the view that rising sea levels caused by climate change could eventually result in the loss of the low-lying island country of the Maldives, architecture student Mayank Thammalla envisions moving the country's entire population onto existing oil rigs.

Designed for Thammalla's final year Masters of Architecture thesis, Swim or Sink isn't meant to be a final plan ready for implementation, and is best considered food-for-thought as to the role architects might take in mitigating the effects of climate change.

"I was interested in looking at the future of the Maldives because their situation is very unique," explains Thammalla. "They are a nation that can lose their entire identity, a 2,000 year old culture and their geographical position on the planet, due to projected sea level rise within the next 100 years. The Maldivians are talking about purchasing land in Australia, what will the costs be there?

"A loss of their rich culture, a loss of their day to day activities, and a loss of their presence in their natural surrounding oceanic environment. All that said, I am not sure about all the political and economic factors that might possibly be involved."

Taking the place of the Maldives' beautiful natural islands, the oil rigs would be veritable cities and include mosques, markets, and retail spaces, in addition to housing
Taking the place of the Maldives' beautiful natural islands, the oil rigs would be veritable cities and include mosques, markets, and retail spaces, in addition to housing

Thammalla imagines moving around 400,000 people onto huge semi-submersible oil rigs. Taking the place of the Maldives' beautiful natural islands, the rigs would include cinemas, mosques, markets, and retail spaces. Housing would be constructed using traditional local materials, and though the rigs have no airport as such, existing helipads could be used for "island hopping."

Thammalla also posits that the man-made islands would protect inhabitants from natural disasters like tsunamis. While no sustainable technology is mentioned, making the oil rig communities self-sufficient energy-wise and even food-wise seems a relatively small challenge compared to more pressing issues, like sourcing enough huge unused oil rigs to house such a large number of people, for example.

Source: Mayank Thammalla

View gallery - 8 images
12 comments
Gaëtan Mahon
He should probably rethink the naming conventions of the Platforms. "Sektor 5"? Really? Who the heck wants to live in a place called Sektor 5? Why not District 9? Or even Area 51?
I'd suggest the use of something more friendly like picking up the name of the location the people had to flee from because of the circumstances.
Just my 5 Cents though...
Other than that... I can already see a new game trend for the kids developing in such a location: "Plattforming"
Bob Flint
While no sustainable technology is mentioned, making the oil rig communities self-sufficient energy-wise and even food-wise seems a relatively small challenge, really?
Never mind that you don't have enough oil rigs, one won't work without drinking water, food, & shelter.
Tom Benson
Cause beaches and palm trees are so overrated
Kristianna Thomas
Commenters are forgetting that the threat of rising sea levels is the reality that people of the Maldives islands are facing; now. There are over 400,000 people that inhabit the island chains, and so what do they do in order to prevent themselves from being forced from their homes and becoming refugees. The world is changing and most people are in a state of denial, and we debate whether climate change is real or manmade; the people of the island nations are the canary in the coal mine. There probably aren't enough oil rigs around the Maldives Islands to house 400,000 people, but the concept of an oil rig platform is a solid idea that is worth pursuing.
When it comes to Climate Change we should think outside of ourselves and think what happens to the people of island nations will come to us in the long run. In order for us to secure our own survival; we must help the people of the islands to survive. Either we rise as a species; or we fall as a species. So! What will it be? Our money, or our lives?
SuperFool
Unlike islands, oil platforms need maintenance or they fall apart. It might work for 10 or 20 yrs but eventually someone has to come up with millions of dollars to repair or replace them. sounds like another real estate scam to me. Instead, how about loudly soliciting an offer from the Chinese to dredge some surrounding seabed to increase the height of the island in exchange for a fishing port or landing strip? the US &/or Australia &/or India will have to make a better offer or loose regional influence.
L1ma
Global warming is normal for an interglacial period along with the almost constant average 0.6mm rise in sea levels per annum, the Maldives has a rise of 0.8 - 1.6mm due to tectonic processes beyond presumed anthropic global warming.
Unfortunately the population of the Maldives do not live on global warming threatened Islands, they live on sinking Atoll's which represent the majority of islands. Sinking beneath the waves is entirely normal and was compensated by populations moving or being wiped out by constant disasters such as tsunamis - poof of which are demonstrated by coconut trees growing over 70 feet above shorelines from a water based nut which floats.
In the period before the nation state they would have just moved on unnoticed or disappeared like most species living on a marginal habitat. But today it is trendy to throw money at any problem a camera witnesses like a BBC crew throws bottled water to stranded boats of Burmese migrants, which is good only for TV and a band aid for the conscience, when they need a whole social change - themselves included.
Azza14
You guys do know that there are over 400 existing semi submersible oil rigs at the moment for oil drilling purposes. Why cant more be made in the future for this purpose? 400 existing x 1500 per oil rig, can accommodation the existing population now. Also, currently, the Maldives uses 80% of kerosene to run their country. 80%!!! These oil rigs might even enable them to be a bit more sustainable!
Wombat56
Uh, what do they do for jobs, money or food?
Simon Sammut
Ermm... the idea of living on platforms, fine.. as an ideaa on it's own merit.. but as a replacement for drowning islands??? really?? How do you expect to save a culture when the culture is directly tied to the environment it evolved on? All those passed on techniques of surviving on the land and the spiritual ties to the environment.. how is that going to survive on a platform. This is just pure ignorance regarding the understanding of what culture is. A modern industrial culture maybe, but that is not the Maldives is it?
watersworm
Please read the works of Axel Moerner, a world famous scientist on these topics, on sea rising, and you'll be surprised ! That said, it is obvious that a low altitude island built with buildings weighing thousands of tons has a bad influence, not on sea rising, but on land drowning ! that is the case of Male capital and principal island of Maldives'archipelago. In some ways it is the same in Manhattan where a tropical storm like Sandy surely makes disaster, because of "overflowing" (in french = "surcote", I don"t know the correct translation), completely different from sea level rising , that occurs but so slowly and inequally over the world!