Toyota Woven City: this is the name chosen for the prototype city of the future that the Japanese automaker is planning at the base of Mount Fuji in Japan.
It is a fully connected ecosystem powered by hydrogen fuel cells. Envisioned as a living laboratory, it will serve as a home for full-time residents and researchers who will be able to test and develop technologies such as robotics, personal mobility, smart homes and artificial intelligence.
“Building a complete city from the ground up, even on a small scale like this, represents a unique chance to develop future technologies, including a digital operating system for the city’s infrastructure. With people, buildings and vehicles all connected and communicating with each other through data and sensors, we will be able to test connected artificial intelligent technology… in both the virtual and the physical realms… maximizing its potential,” said Akio Toyoda, president, Toyota Motor Corporation.
The buildings will be made of wood to minimize CO2 emissions, the rooftops will be covered in photovoltaic panels to generate solar power in addition to power generated by hydrogen fuel cells.
The houses will be equipped with the latest home automation technologies to assist with daily living.
As far as the mobility of the city is concerned, there will be three road types: for faster vehicles, for lower speeds and for pedestrians only. These three road types weave together to form an organic grid pattern to help accelerate the testing of autonomy. To move residents through the city, only fully autonomous, zero emission vehicles will be allowed. In addition, Toyota autonomous e-Pallets will be used for transportation and deliveries.
For the design of Woven City, Toyota commissioned the Danish architect Bjarke Ingels, founder and creative director of the Bjarke Ingels Group, who designed many high-profile projects (Two World Trade Center in New York and the Lego House in Denmark, the California Google’s Mountain View and London headquarters. “A swarm of different technologies – says Ingels – is beginning to radically change the way we inhabit and live our cities. Connected, autonomous, emission-free and shared mobility solutions are bound to unleash a world of opportunities for new forms of urban life.”
A special thanks to Alba Emanuela Uva