An arcology, a type of Megastructure, is a habitat or settlement maintaining an extremely high human population density.
The term was invented by architect Paolo Soleri, as a portmanteau of architecture and ecology.
Arcologies are often intended to house self-sufficient communities containing residential, industrial, agricultural, and commercial structures all in one megastructure, providing all conceptually desirable services to its inhabitants to include public transport, sanitation, medical, vocational, ediucational, and all other conceptual needs.
History & Background (Dossier)
Non-canon: So far on Earth these constructs exist only conceptually with experiments taking place at Arcosanti in central Arizona, USA. Many arcology proposals have been made, but not actualized, often due to insufficient funding. These constructs are widely popular in science fiction.
- Arcologies are generally advocated as solutions to the problems of overpopulation and environmental degradation, as they reduce the ecological footprint of cities.
- Most cities spread across the Planet's surface horizontally — covering more and more land and reducing arable farmland.
- Arcologies, on the other hand, are more three-dimensional, extending into a vertical element and thus leaving more of a planet's surface in pristine, original condition.