Poverty, crime, and homelessness are still rampant problems in countries around the world. 100-year-old futurist Jacque Fresco and architectural illustrator Roxanne Meadows founded The Venus Project to not only address these problems, but also to redesign cities to make them more sustainable. These circular cities draw on technology and science to produce a better society with a less harmful environmental impact.
The Venus Project thinks our monetary system is dehumanizing and leads to dysfunctional behavior. According to Meadows, who spoke in an interview with Futurism, the founders advocate what they call a Resource Based Economy, which calls for resources to be distributed equitably without money or credit. Services and goods would be available for all people for free, much like checking out books at a library.
Although The Venus Project offers a vision for redesigned cities, architecture isn’t the project’s sole focus. Meadows told Inhabitat, “The Venus Project is more than just architecture; it is about a new social design. The architecture is built with that in mind and designed to conserve resources and maintain a high standard of living so the entire global population can have access to adequate housing, nutritious food, clean water, and all the amenities an advanced technical civilization can achieve. The Venus Project’s architecture is not isolated from its social direction; no branch of science should be.”
A main idea of The Venus Project is to move past politics. Meadows said politicians are rarely experts on preventing climate change or developing clean energy sources, for example. Instead, they often work to maintain the status quo and serve the interests of the wealthy and powerful.
Meadows told Futurism: “It is not ethical people in government that we need but equal access to the necessities of life and those working toward the elimination of scarcity. We would use scientific scales of performance for measurement and allocation of resources so that human biases are left out of the equation. Within The Venus Project’s safe, energy-efficient cities, there would be interdisciplinary teams of knowledgeable people in different fields accompanied by cybernated systems that use sensors to monitor all aspects of society in order to provide real-time information supporting decision-making for the well-being of all people and the protection of the environment.”
The team completed a 21-acre research center in Florida as the first phase of the project, and are working to get the ideas out to the public through documentaries and a film in the second phase. They also aim to construct an experimental research city.
Images designed by Jacque Fresco courtesy of The Venus Project