Urban density/climate change/pandemics/the unwanted – home state (Washington) edition

Washington state is larger in land size than Bangladesh. We have ten times more coastline than Bangladesh. Somehow though Bangladesh has 20 times the population of our state. Urban sprawl and suburbs are a curse on life. They degrade the land, increase resource use, fuel white supremacy, cause climate change, lead to zootonic virus pandemics and so forth. There are some cities in the world which provide gold standard examples of density with comfort, such as Barcelona, Hong Kong and Paris. Barcelona and Paris each have population densities around 50,000 people per square mile with very few buildings reaching ten stories tall. The Kwun Tong district of Hong Kong has a population density of 150,000 people per square mile over four square miles. I won’t talk about the famous Kowloon Walled City, which had a population density of three million people per square mile. If someone were able to make a modern version of it with good living standards, that’d be awesome, but until then, I’ll leave it out. Hong Kong is squeezed for buildable land so their housing is mostly high rise, unlike Barcelona and Paris. If I could snap my fingers and instantly make the world better, here is what our cities would look like.
Seattle currently has a population of 744,955 on 83.9 square miles, for a density of 8,879 people per square mile. There have been great proposals by some of turning Seattle’s golf courses into housing using Barcelona’s superblocks, thus a density of 40-50k per square mile like Barcelona and Paris, but Seattle has a lot of coast line and hills, thus many great views, and I think as many people as possible should be able to live with great views, therefore in my dream world, Seattle is more like Hong Kong with lots of high rise housing near the water. Puget Sound, Lake Washington, Greenlake, Lake Union and the Duwamish River. *snaps fingers* Seattle now has a population of 4.2 million people on 28 square miles of land, 20 square miles of land used for vertical aquaponics which is enough to feed 5 million people, and 36 square miles of parks/forests/wetlands/green space/land reparations to the indigenous. The entire Seattle metro area is now able to live just within Seattle alone. So are we done here? No! There are 70-80 million stateless people in the world, such as the Roma in Europe, the Palestinians, the Rohingya, the Syrian refugees to name a few. If Bangladesh can support 160 million people on an area smaller than Washington, than surely we can take in millions of refugees and stateless people. So on we go!
Bellevue has lots of coastline like Seattle, on Lake Washington and Lake Sammamish, while also having quite a bit of hills, therefore perfectly suited for Hong Kong level density to ensure as many people as possible live with great views. The city is 32 square miles of land, thus.. *snaps fingers* Bellevue now has a population of 1.75 million people on 12 square miles, 7 square miles of land for vertical aquaponics which is enough to feed 1.75 million people and 13 square miles of parks/forests/wetlands/greenspace/land reparations etc. Hey look at that, the whole Seattle metro area now lives in just Seattle, and Bellevue is now able to house, feed and support all of the Rohingya people!
Tacoma sits on the water too, let’s see what it looks like in the future..*snaps fingers* Tacoma now has 2.4 million people on 16 square miles of land, 10 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 2.5 million people, and 24 square miles of parks etc. Wait now Tacoma can house and support all the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. If Israel won’t recognize the human rights of Palestinians, Tacoma could easily become the new Gaza. Yes, they’d be hypothetically joined by their West Bank friends, and the Palestinians in refugee camps in Syria, Jordan, Egypt, Lebanon among other places. I’ll get around to it as I go down the cities list.
Everett..*snaps fingers* now has 1.65 million people on 11 square miles of land, 7 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 1.75 million people, and 15 square miles of parks assuming you get rid of Paine Field because in this dream we are greatly reducing airplane travel. Although if we keep Paine Field, then perhaps 10 square miles of parks and stuff.
Kirkland..*snaps fingers* now has 900k people on 6 square miles of land, 4 square miles of vertical aquaponics feeding 1 million people, and 8 square miles of parks and stuff.
Edmonds..*snaps fingers* 450k people on 3 square miles of land, 2 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 500k people, and 4 square miles of parks and stuff.
Mukilteo..*snaps fingers* 300k people on 2 square miles, 2 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 500k people, 2 square miles of parks and stuff.
Mercer Island..*snaps fingers* 600k people on 4 square miles of land, 3 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 750k people, 6 square miles of parks and stuff. The density on Mercer Island would be mostly near the light rail, but also circle most of the island, while the middle part of the island would be basically a huge park similar to Central Park in NYC, with the food growing on each side of the park.
Bainbridge Island..*snaps fingers* 600k people on 4 square miles of land, 3 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 750k people, and 20 square miles of parks and stuff.
The remaining cities I’ll mention in the Seattle metro area will have Barcelona/Paris type density, meaning roughly 50,000 people per square mile using superblocks that stay under ten floors tall.
Vashon Island..*snaps fingers* 300k people on 6 square miles, 2 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 500k people, 28 square miles of parks and stuff.
Shoreline..*snaps fingers* 200k people on 4 square miles, 1 square mile of vertical aquaponics to feed 250k people, 6 square miles of parks and stuff.
Marysville & North Marysville..*snaps fingers* 400k people on 8 square miles of land, 2 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 500k people, 11 square miles of parks and stuff.
Bothell..*snaps fingers* 250k people on 5 square miles of land, 1 square mile of vertical aquaponics to feed 250k people, 7 square miles of parks and stuff.
Lynwood..*snaps fingers* 100k people on 2 square miles of land, 1 square mile of vertical aquaponics to feed 250k people, 5 square miles of parks and stuff.
Kenmore..*snaps fingers* 100k people on 2 square miles of land, 1 square mile of vertical aquaponics to feed 250k people, 4 square miles of parks and stuff.
Sammamish..*snaps fingers* 300k people on 6 square miles of land, 2 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 500k people, 10 square miles of parks and stuff.
Puyallup..*snaps fingers* 250k people on 5 square miles of land, 1 square mile of vertical aquaponics to feed 250k people, 8 square miles of parks and stuff.
Burien..*snaps fingers* 200k people on 4 square miles of land, 1 square mile of vertical aquaponics to feed 250k people, 6 square miles of parks and stuff.
Tukwila..*snaps fingers* 150k people on 3 square miles of land, 1 square mile of vertical aquaponics to feed 250k people, 5 square miles of parks and stuff.
Silverdale..*snaps fingers* 200k people on 4 square miles of land, 1 square mile of vertical aquaponics to feed 250k people, 7 square miles of parks and stuff.
Gig Harbor..*snaps fingers* 100k people on 2 square miles of land, 1 square mile of vertical aquaponics to feed 250k people, 3 square miles of parks and stuff.
Issaquah..*snaps fingers* 200k people on 4 square miles of land, 1 square mile of vertical aquaponics to feed 250k people, 6 square miles of parks and stuff.
Redmond..*snaps fingers* 250k people on 5 square miles of land, 1 square mile of vertical aquaponics to feed 250k people, 10 square miles of parks and stuff.
Renton..*snaps fingers* 350k people on 7 square miles of land, 2 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 500k people, 14 square miles of parks and stuff, assuming you tear out Boeing Field which I would because it currently takes up the best land in Renton, that which is right on Lake Washington.
Kent..*snaps fingers* 750k people on 15 square miles of land, 3 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 750k people, 16 square miles of parks and stuff.
Auburn..*snaps fingers* 600k people on 12 square miles of land, 3 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 750k people, 14 square miles of parks and stuff.
Federal Way..*snaps fingers* 450k people on 9 square miles of land, 2 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 500k people, 13 square miles of parks and stuff.
Lakewood..*snaps fingers* 250k people on 5 square miles of land, 1 square mile of vertical aquaponics to feed 250k people, 11 square miles of parks and stuff.
So yea, that is most of the Seattle metro area! Our metro area currently has a population under four million people, and this would bring it to 17.6 million people. Not only that, every city within the metro area would be able to feed itself, would have a reduced urban heat island effect because of all the parks and other green space, would have a world class public transit system, would be resilient in the face of pandemics, and much more social and diverse. I’ll now expand onto the rest of the state.
Spokane Valley..*snaps fingers* 1 million people on 20 square miles of land, 4 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 1 million people, 14 square miles of parks and stuff.
Spokane..*snaps fingers* the southern part of Spokane is the downtown area and has a hill, so there’d be 10 square miles of Spokane with Hong Kong density, so 1.5 million people on 10 square miles. Another 20 square miles of Spokane would be like Barcelona/Paris, so 1 million people on 20 square miles of land. In total, Spokane would have 2.5 million people on 30 square miles of land, 10 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 2.5 million people, and 19 square miles of parks and stuff.
Vancouver Washington..*snaps fingers* Vancouver is on the Columbia River and stretches long along the river, plus has great views of Mt. Hood to the east and the northern part of Vancouver, with Hong Kong type density, would allow many people to live with a great view of Mt. St. Helens. Therefore, Vancouver gets 2.2 million people on 15 square miles of land, 10 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 2.5 million people, and 21 square miles of parks and stuff.
Port Angeles..*snaps fingers* 450k on 3 square miles of land, 2 square miles of vertical aquaponics, 6 square miles of parks and stuff.
Port Townsend..*snaps fingers* 300k people on 2 square miles of land, 2 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 500k people, 3 square miles of parks and stuff.
Anacortes..*snaps fingers* 450k people on 3 square miles of land, 2 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 500k people, 7 square miles of parks and stuff.
Bellingham..*snaps fingers* 1.35 million people on 9 square miles of land. 6 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 1.5 million people, 12 square miles of parks and stuff.
Yakima..*snaps fingers* 450k people on 9 square miles of land, 2 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 500k people, 16 square miles of parks and stuff.
Moses Lake..*snaps fingers* 750k people on 5 square miles of land, 3 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 750k people, 8 square miles of parks and stuff.
Pasco (Tri-Cities)..*snaps fingers* the Tri-Cities are where the Columbia and Snake Rivers meet, so you want as many people as possible to live with those great views. Pasco gets 1.5 million people on 10 square miles of land, 6 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 1.5 million people, 14 square miles of parks and stuff.
Kennewick (Tri Cities)..*snaps fingers* 1.35 million people on 9 square miles of land, 6 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 1.5 million people, 12 square miles of parks and stuff.
Richland (Tri-Cities)..*snaps fingers* 1.8 million people on 12 square miles of land, 8 square miles of vertical aquaponics to feed 2 million people, 16 square miles of parks and stuff.
West Richland (Tri-Cities)..*snaps fingers* It’s not right on the river so it gets Barcelona/Paris density. 350k people on 7 square miles, 2 square miles of vertical aquaponics, 10 square miles of parks and stuff.
So yea, that’s most of the cities in the state. We’d be able to house and support all of the Rohingya, all the Roma, all the Palestinians, and a good chunk of Syrian refugees. We could take in lots of the people the rest of the world doesn’t seem to want or care for, while fighting climate change and reducing the chances of further zootonic virus outbreaks. Our cities would be more populated yet feel smaller as they’d be more walkable, public transit easier to access, and more parks and green space that make you feel like you’re not in a city. It’d bring the population of Washington to a minimum of 32 million people, still significantly less than Bangladesh. The other benefit though is that we’d have 32 million plus people while all the cities grow their own food, thus all the farm land is no longer needed and can be returned to the indigenous.

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