The Hyperion Project, a proposal to build a theme park in Takasaki, Japan, based on the concept of a Martian City of the future, was created by the architectural design team of Michels Bollinger Architecture.
The designers envisioned a city that would allow visitors in 10,000 years time to stroll through gardens of mutant vegetation, celebrate the births of new species created through genetic engineering, watch robots engage in sumo wrestling, chat with killer whales, and intensify their awareness of sound by stepping into a chamber that surrounds then in complete silence.
The project centered on a great pavilion — a single large pavilion for the theme park rather than a collection of isolated structures which would house two integrated components of the park: the two level Astropark, featuring rides, and, participatory exhibitions and other entertainment and educational features, and “Mars City”, comprising hotels, restaurants, conference facilities, and other services to meet the needs of visitors.
The designers believed that the Great Pavilion concept was crucial to the park’s success in meeting its conceptual goal of advancing the development of human beings. “Future thinking demands a synergy between disciplines-ideas in one field of inquiry must be free to flow into another,” according to the designers. “Only a unified concept liberates the expression of interdisciplinary imagination so vital for the next breakthroughs in science, technology, and human thought.”
The Hyperion Project aspired to help visitors integrate mind, body and spirit through encouraging them to participate in creating the ideal image of future man, or “Miraijinrui.” In the “I Being” area, for instance, visitors would encounter their own image, symbolizing that the ideal future, the “I Being” Contemplation Plaza, encourages introspection and coming to terms with one’s place in the universe.
The culmination of the “I Being” experience was the opportunity for each visitor to re-create himself or herself according to an image of the ideal future human. Using the computer, one could “genetically” alter any mental and physical traits. The computer would collect all the different images generated by visitors and then create a complete composite, projecting a hologram of the continuously evolving image for all to see.
The Hyperion Project creators envisioned their design as a model for a future, self-contained biosphere colony on Mars. “The name, Hyperion, connotes something at once futuristic and strong.” They explained, “Our mythical future city on Mars appropriately carries this heroic name and grand design. The Hyperion dream combines myth and purpose into a powerful vision of tomorrow. In the magnificent space, human aspirations can soar forward into the horizon of dreams.”
DFP, MAY, 2017.
As many of you know, I recently completed a short story featuring a new city entirely constructed within a dome and featuring the most advanced ideas that I could imagine. This team’s bravery in reaching out 10,000 years on another planet defies the imagination. Bravo!