‘Test City’ Being Built In New Mexico Desert

nmWould you jump at the chance to live in an artificially-created city in the middle of nowhere and participate in trial runs of the technologies of tomorrow? This is as close as you can come to living in a space colony on Earth. BLDGBLOG writes:

A private consulting firm in Washington D.C. is developing a “test city”—one “with no permanent population”—in the New Mexico desert, according to the Albuquerque Journal. It will be “a privately financed, small city on 20 square miles in New Mexico for testing and evaluation of new and emerging technologies,” run from afar by Pegasus Global Holdings.

This as yet unnamed location will be devoted to the “‘real world’ testing of smart grids, renewable energy integration, next-gen wireless, smart grid cyber security and terrorism vulnerability,” making it a life-size trial for private sector urban management—Cisco’s city-in-a-box and IBM urbanism wrapped in one.

I’m inclined to ask what it might look like if other corporations were to launch their own “test cities” in the desert somewhere—an REI city, complete with artificial whitewater rapids, campfires, and outdoor climbing walls; a Playboy city, complete with unlockable shared doors between neighboring bedrooms; an AMC city, with screens and streetside auditoriums, and massive projectors on cranes like new constellations in the sky.

What if the city you live in is simply an immersive product demonstration for a group of private companies? Or is that what cars did to the American city long ago?

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  • E.B. Wolf

    Private consulting firm + D.C. + “test city” = not a fucking chance.

  • E.B. Wolf

    Private consulting firm + D.C. + “test city” = not a fucking chance.

  • Yith
  • Yith
  • Yith
  • 5by5

    This is already being tried more effectively near Paredes, Portugal too.

    New Scientist reported about it about this time last year — sustainable urban planning, where PUBLIC officials are literally designing a community of 150,000 people who, by 2015, will live in a cityscape in which all its infrastructural systems — energy, water reclamation and purification, climate control, and waste processing — will be integrated and computer-controlled. The city will literally have a brain.

    All buildings will sport sensors which monitor occupancy and compensates for temperature and energy use. Data streams provided by solar and wind power generators will be input into the city’s central nervous system and alter power and heat supplies in real-time. Rainwater will be collected by tanks located on green roofs, will then be filtered by still other plants for use in grey water applications like irrigation. Additionally, 80% of the city’s trash would be recycled or re-used for energy production, whereas a normal city only diverts roughly 2% for such purposes.These energy monitoring features are wonderful. However, I have serious reservations about some of the proposed people monitoring systems as those could be potentially abused in a privacy context (the city would “listen” to conversations in meeting rooms, and find people via security cameras). That bullshit happened when they brought in… wait for it…. Cisco Systems, McLaren Electronics Systems, and Accenture, to help build the thing. The second the corporate hacks are involved, something goes awry.But for the most part, the city planners are putting some powerful eco-ideas into practice, so it should be interesting to watch the results. But as long as that spying stuff is embedded in the city, you couldn’t pay me to live there.

    • quartz99

      I would do it as part of the test process. Not permanently, but they’re talking about bringing people in for only short periods of time. Could actually be kind of cool to see new technologies in action.

      Then I’d make sure to do things “in private” that would make anyone eavesdropping embarrassed or flabbergasted… and I’m not a terribly attractive woman so you want to watch me when I think I’m alone, you get what you deserve.

    • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

      Welcome to the new world of City States. Maybe its something we all need…

  • 5by5

    This is already being tried more effectively near Paredes, Portugal too.

    New Scientist reported about it about this time last year — sustainable urban planning, where PUBLIC officials are literally designing a community of 150,000 people who, by 2015, will live in a cityscape in which all its infrastructural systems — energy, water reclamation and purification, climate control, and waste processing — will be integrated and computer-controlled. The city will literally have a brain.

    All buildings will sport sensors which monitor occupancy and compensates for temperature and energy use. Data streams provided by solar and wind power generators will be input into the city’s central nervous system and alter power and heat supplies in real-time. Rainwater will be collected by tanks located on green roofs, will then be filtered by still other plants for use in grey water applications like irrigation. Additionally, 80% of the city’s trash would be recycled or re-used for energy production, whereas a normal city only diverts roughly 2% for such purposes.These energy monitoring features are wonderful. However, I have serious reservations about some of the proposed people monitoring systems as those could be potentially abused in a privacy context (the city would “listen” to conversations in meeting rooms, and find people via security cameras). That bullshit happened when they brought in… wait for it…. Cisco Systems, McLaren Electronics Systems, and Accenture, to help build the thing. The second the corporate hacks are involved, something goes awry.But for the most part, the city planners are putting some powerful eco-ideas into practice, so it should be interesting to watch the results. But as long as that spying stuff is embedded in the city, you couldn’t pay me to live there.

  • 5by5

    Actually, come to think of it, I don’t know which is creepier, corporate planned cities like the Disney one, or corporate + religious planned cities like the one the Domino’s pizza founder and Opus Dei catholic is building in Florida.
    Disney - http://www.celebration.fl.us/Dominos – http://www.ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=29885

  • 5by5

    Actually, come to think of it, I don’t know which is creepier, corporate planned cities like the Disney one, or corporate + religious planned cities like the one the Domino’s pizza founder and Opus Dei catholic is building in Florida.
    Disney - http://www.celebration.fl.us/Dominos – http://www.ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=29885

  • 5by5

    Actually, come to think of it, I don’t know which is creepier, corporate planned cities like the Disney one, or corporate + religious planned cities like the one the Domino’s pizza founder and Opus Dei catholic is building in Florida.
    Disney - http://www.celebration.fl.us/Dominos – http://www.ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=29885

  • 5by5

    Actually, come to think of it, I don’t know which is creepier, corporate planned cities like the Disney one, or corporate + religious planned cities like the one the Domino’s pizza founder and Opus Dei catholic is building in Florida.
    Disney - http://www.celebration.fl.us/Dominos – http://www.ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=29885

  • 5by5

    Ok, sometimes the comments field doesn’t actually pick up paragraph breaks, so here’s the clean link (hopefully) to the Disney-fied town:

    http://www.celebration.fl.us/

  • 5by5

    Ok, sometimes the comments field doesn’t actually pick up paragraph breaks, so here’s the clean link (hopefully) to the Disney-fied town:

    http://www.celebration.fl.us/

  • Rob Chalfen

    I’d still like to see Arcosanti funded & built; conceived along much more communal & visionary lines: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arcosanti

  • Rob Chalfen

    I’d still like to see Arcosanti funded & built; conceived along much more communal & visionary lines: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arcosanti

  • Rob Chalfen

    I’d still like to see Arcosanti funded & built; conceived along much more communal & visionary lines: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arcosanti

  • Bunnyofthekungfu

    Dharma Initiative.

  • Bunnyofthekungfu

    Dharma Initiative.

  • Anarchy Pony

    No see all the cities need to be destroyed. Not made fancier. And building more is the last goddamn thing we should be doing.

    • Anarchy Pony

      Also one more step down the road to the future corporate fiefdoms that we will all have to submit to.

  • Wanooski

    No see all the cities need to be destroyed. Not made fancier. And building more is the last goddamn thing we should be doing.

  • Anonymous

    I would do it as part of the test process. Not permanently, but they’re talking about bringing people in for only short periods of time. Could actually be kind of cool to see new technologies in action.

    Then I’d make sure to do things “in private” that would make anyone eavesdropping embarrassed or flabbergasted… and I’m not a terribly attractive woman so you want to watch me when I think I’m alone, you get what you deserve.

  • Wanooski

    Also one more step down the road to the future corporate fiefdoms that we will all have to submit to.

  • Okarin

    if all the rich people get their get their own city after ruining regular cities it’ll look post-apocalyptic, a large number of poor people scavenging around in big cities

  • Okarin

    if all the rich people get their get their own city after ruining regular cities it’ll look post-apocalyptic, a large number of poor people scavenging around in big cities

    • Anarchy Pony

      And some of us will organize rebel raiding parties to sack those cities. The corporate fiefdoms will fall to the roving vandal hordes. 
      Apparently full circle back to the ways of my ancestors.

  • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

    …and just beneath Raccoon City…

  • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

    …and just beneath Raccoon City…

  • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

    Welcome to the new world of City States. Maybe its something we all need…

  • Ryan House

    Hmm sounds like an easy way to entice, contain, and trap citizens with the promise of “perfect designed desert cities” and reclaim their land in the spirit of the “Reserve Corridor System to Protect Biodiversity” which feature cities with a capacity of >10 000 people.

    http://www.godlikeproductions.com/sm/custom/fiqckcrb.jpeg

  • Ryan House

    Hmm sounds like an easy way to entice, contain, and trap citizens with the promise of “perfect designed desert cities” and reclaim their land in the spirit of the “Reserve Corridor System to Protect Biodiversity” which feature cities with a capacity of >10 000 people.

    http://www.godlikeproductions.com/sm/custom/fiqckcrb.jpeg

  • Wanooski

    And some of us will organize rebel raiding parties to sack those cities. The corporate fiefdoms will fall to the roving vandal hordes. 
    Apparently full circle back to the ways of my ancestors.

  • fdfzdbzzvguest

    Cool. This is a good idea. Not to the conspirators, but to the sane.

  • fdfzdbzzvguest

    Cool. This is a good idea. Not to the conspirators, but to the sane.

  • Gilbo225

    EPCOT
    Experimental Prototype Community Of Tomorrow
    Walt Disney had the same vision a long time ago.  It turned into something slightly different after he passed away, and others took over.

  • Gilbo225

    EPCOT
    Experimental Prototype Community Of Tomorrow
    Walt Disney had the same vision a long time ago.  It turned into something slightly different after he passed away, and others took over.

  • do not disturb

    once the illegals hear of this its all over. There will be no jobs left in the new cities. We must create walls around them for protection and hire all the jocks from arizona state university to protect us. Sarcasm is funny

  • do not disturb

    once the illegals hear of this its all over. There will be no jobs left in the new cities. We must create walls around them for protection and hire all the jocks from arizona state university to protect us. Sarcasm is funny

  • Asif Ali

    Well that is cool information! I recommend that it this technogies should be submitted on Technogies.
    Technogies is a social networking news site dedicated for the New Inventions, 
    Research,Products and Articles in the world of Technology. Publishing News and blogs articles by its members, Stay up to date for Technology with the technogies 

    visit for review http://www.technogies.com

    Search Engine http://www.fantola.com

  • Asif Ali

    Well that is cool information! I recommend that it this technogies should be submitted on Technogies.
    Technogies is a social networking news site dedicated for the New Inventions, 
    Research,Products and Articles in the world of Technology. Publishing News and blogs articles by its members, Stay up to date for Technology with the technogies 

    visit for review http://www.technogies.com

    Search Engine http://www.fantola.com

  • UncleB

    At last! Time is now to apply all we know to survival! America watches as even mighty motor city, Detroit erodes to Third World status, and asks, “Why”? Answers will be found here!

  • Anonymous

    At last! Time is now to apply all we know to survival! America watches as even mighty motor city, Detroit erodes to Third World status, and asks, “Why”? Answers will be found here!

  • Stevede216

    reminds me of the testers in the game portal

  • Stevede216

    reminds me of the testers in the game portal