U:UTOPIA :: The Human Drift

Plan for an ideal city by King Camp Gillette.

"Under a perfect economical system of production and distribution, and a system combining the greatest elements of progress, there can be only one city on a continent, and possibly only one in the world. "

In Gillette's plan, all of North America's inhabitants would live in one huge city, Metropolis, in upstate New York.  The entire continent's population would be concentrated in thirty to forty thousand buildings rising twenty-five stories into the air and powered by the energy from Niagara Falls.  

Left, exterior view of a building of Metropolis.  Below left, a cross section of the building.  As King Camp Gillette describes it:

"In this view, also, the three underlying chambers of the city are shown. A, being the lower or ground chamber, is utilized for sewage, water, hot and cold air, and electric systems; B, the middle chamber, is utilized for the transportation system; and C, the upper chamber, fifty feet in height, is for the purpose of giving additional room and facilities for the people in moving about, and would be especially desirable in inclement weather.

"In the plate the location of dining room in central part of court is shown. Food would find its way to these dining rooms from the building where it was prepared, by an electric transfer system, something on the same principle as now employed in the transfer of money in our large emporiums. This system need take up but little room, and could be laid close to the ceiling of middle chamber. The time of transit of food carrier from the building where food would be prepared to the dining rooms, a distance of about one thousand feet, would probably be less than ten seconds.

"Galleries ten feet wide surround the court at each story, from which access is had to the different apartments.

"Imagine for a moment the possibilities in light and color when these immense courts were brilliant with thousands of electric lights and the interior of the large domes decorated with exquisite paintings that would be the result of inspiration. Of all the thirty to forty thousand buildings in the city, no two need be alike in artistic treatment."

King Camp Gillette's text and illustration here.