Are underground cities the answer to climate change?

   Underground cities are not unknown to humankind. Mankind has planned, made, and inhabited underground cities from ancient times. The most fascinating of them is the underground city of Derinkuyu in Turkey which was discovered in 1963. The underground city of Derinkuyu was made in the 8th century to hide from continuous wars and extreme climatic conditions. It is an eighteen-storied underground town containing living rooms, schoolrooms, kitchens, wells, and even a winery that could hold 20,000 people inside. Ventilation, water, and light could reach every level and there were systems to seal each level during an attack. Such subterranean cities can be a solution to changing climatic conditions. As surface temperatures are increasing, governments are devising underground city master plans.    

 Extreme weather events like harsh winters and scorching summers can be avoided in such subterranean cities where ambient temperatures will be maintained throughout the year and heat loss is also significantly reduced. Drinking water sources are comparatively purer than surface water contaminated by runoffs and moreover, with the ever-growing population, there will be a shortage of land in the very near future. These could be some of the reasons why many countries around the globe have started focussing on such subterranean architecture.    

  Helsinki is an underground city that covers a massive area of 214 square kilometers containing tunnels, museums, swimming pools, and other recreation areas. This underground master plan was made to avoid extreme winters, war threats from Russia. Further such examples in today’s world can be seen in the Earthscraper in Mexico City, The Subtropolis Kansas city, and the proposed underground science city in Singapore.    

 Therefore, with the increasing risk of global warming and its consequences, it is very logical to plan underground spaces that can help to save both space and energy on the surface. With more and more countries showing interest in such architecture, underground plans could be the future of cities.