Photo by Don Fennell
The city of the future is here today.
At least in the eyes of some children at a summer camp in Richmond.
The kids, aged five to 11, spent part of their annual holidays imagining their community as they’d like it to be. During a three-day span recently, they designed Galaxy City, a prospective urban metropolis.
“It’s a high-tech city,” explained the group’s city manager Tiffany, 11, noting with safety being a top priority, security cameras are strategically mounted above streets named for pioneering residents like Kevin, Bob, Maya, Eva, Brenda, Anson, Alivia and Kelly.
One of most obvious examples of being on the cutting edge of tomorrow is a visit to any of Galaxy City’s Gasy Gus gas stations. It takes only three seconds to fill up your vehicle after driving through a specially-designed tunnel, proudly notes owner-operator Megan.
Alivia’s Green Cross Hospital is also replete with the latest medical advances, while Huggies Academy principal of operations, Oliver, is equally proud that the city’s schools are all fitted with an up-to-date digital computer network to broaden every student’s horizons. Teachers Kaleb, Alysha and Kaitlyn say the level of academic engagement is unparalleled.
As one might imagine, Rob the Bank, at the hub of the city’s financial district, also incorporates the latest technology. Founder Nicole made it a priority from day one to offer patrons “service above and beyond the norm.” Keeping the peace is also a big deal in Galaxy City, and led by Sheriff Angelina the Cyber Forces do just that.
By far the most popular supermarket in Galaxy City is Bosco’s. The vast warehouse-style outlet stocks every conceivable household item and then some.
Technology is also top of mind when it comes to controlling the environment, including the weather. Grids of solar panels, visible as far as the eye can see, efficiently store energy for a community blessed with plenty of natural sunshine.
But it’s not until you meet the robots that you appreciate how futuristic Galaxy City truly is. All 126,000 residents have their own personal robot, and Benjamin’s 8-Bit Trampoline Park, itself operated by a robot named 8-Bit, is routinely packed with the intelligent beings.
City manager Tiffany says the robots carry out most menial tasks, while giving residents more leisure time to simply enjoy life. That includes a visit to the iconic and ever-popular McDonald’s, Harvey’s Sushi Ship, Cayley’s Melted Puddle Ice Cream Shop and Freddie’s Pizza Place where each order is quickly filled by the always-friendly staff of robots. Tiffany and Cayley also own their own jewelry store, specializing in precious stones, while Anson the Annoying Shop is the go-to source for all practical jokesters in town.
Galaxy City’s airport is, naturally, high-tech too. But it’s temporarily closed in order to facilitate a rapid rebuild that will see its original size more than double.
It took three days for the children of Richmond to conceive Galaxy City and then create a mock up.