In light of the recent Japanese earthquake, Panasonic and eight other companies are plowing full-steam ahead with plans for their Fujisawa Sustainable Smart Town (SST) — a 19-hectacre "green" community that will be home to 3,000 residents and where life will revolve around being energy-conscious.
Planned for its grand opening in March 2014, SST will be designed with eco-friendly features in mind first, instead of trying to make existing towns more eco-friendly.
Panasonic expects things like creating electric vehicle charging stations from the get-go, integrating solar panels that "blend into the town's lush green landscape," incorporating sensors around town to control lighting, and creating a networked town to monitor energy usage to take the lead in reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 70 percent than levels recorded in the 1990s.
As you can see in picture above, every roof structure will be tricked out with solar panels.
It sounds like a highly utopian-like town, but if it really can generate its own green energy and pump it back into the community without any hiccups, then the SST could become the template for building our planet's future towns. There's also the matter of how Panasonic and its partners are going to screen for community applicants and how much living in Fujisawa SST is going to cost per year, but that's the stuff still being tweaked.
The next six months will be focused on designing the overall look and architecture of the town and by 2018, the entire SST should be populated and fully operational. With the entire town built to be energy-conscious, we're assuming that gadgets that don't meet a certain energy-saving rating will not be allowed. Even scarier is that since the SST development is lead by Panasonic, what of gadgets from competitors? Will my Energy-Star Samsung HDTV not be allowed into this little community? How about my non-Panasonic headphones? How much of life will be regulated? Will robots be watching my every move to make sure I'm not going overboard on the power use?