Turkey has long considered the construction of a new canal, one that would connect the Black Sea to the Marmara Sea and provide a safer route for tanker ships that currently navigate the Bosporus straits. But what do you do with the billion cubic meters of soil that you've dug out? Architect Dror Benshetrit has a suggestion: build a man-made island that could house a city of 30,000 people.
Benshetrit calls his project HavvAda Island, which he proposes would sit off the coast of Istanbul. The island would function as a single, largely self-sufficient city; six geodesic domes would each form a hill across the island. Commercial spaces would sit inside the domes and residences would form the outside space. The result would be six different microclimates that would allow for diverse agriculture, and the shapes of the buildings should maximize energy recapture.
A transportation grid would connect the six domes, and each one would house a large community venue: a stadium, financial center, education center, sports center, entertainment center, and museum. Benshetrit's idea is to create a planned community that maximizes efficiency and self-sufficiency.
Last year, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced plans to move forward with the canal, although any actual construction is still a ways off. Perhaps we'll see more of these proposed soil uses if the canal ends up being built.