A cryptocurrency millionaire is buying up land in Nevada’s desert to build a utopian village run on Ethereum — here are the design plans

Nevada DesertWilliam Ducklow/Shutterstock

A cryptocurrency millionaire has revealed his designs for an utopian community in the Nevada desert run completely on blockchain.

The New York Times reports that the man behind the project, Jeffrey Berns, is planning a city that would run entirely on blockchain, a decentralized infrastructure which could theoretically provide the foundation for a community that’s independent from the capitalistic world we live in. Instead of government and big corporations in control, the blockchain-based city would put power in the hands of the people and use cryptocurrency as the coin of the realm.

The city aims to showcase how business development, residential living and commerce can flourish alongside world changing technologies,” reads a description on the website of Tom Wiscombe Architecture, one of the designers of the community. “Multiple innovative technologies will change the way its residents interact on a daily basis and blockchain technology will be at the center of it all – keeping systems honest, fair and democratic. “

The area Berns has planned for his city comprises 67,000 acres of land in the Nevada desert that Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval has dubbed “Innovation Park.” It surrounds an industrial park where Tesla’s Gigafactory is located, as well as buildings that major tech giants like Google and Apple own. 

The company that Berns founded, Blockchains LLC, bought the property earlier this year for a reported $170 million, according to the NYT. Berns is able to fund the entire project — including the additional $300 million he’s already put into the land — with money he acquired from an investment in the cryptocurrency Ethereum back in 2015.

“Something inside me tells me this is the answer,” Berns told the NYT. “That if we can get enough people to trust the blockchain, we can begin to change all the systems we operate by.”

Berns says Blockchains plans to begin construction of the city in late 2019 at the earliest, but the company still needs to develop a master plan and get county approval.

Check out some of the designs for this blockchain-based utopia in the Nevada desert:

Renderings of the city show a city split in two parts: a residential area and campus for researching emerging technologies, shown here.

Renderings of the city show a city split in two parts: a residential area and campus for researching emerging technologies, shown here.

EYRC Architects + Tom Wiscombe Architecture

The business side of the city will feature “a highly secured, high-tech Blockchains Campus that joins blockchain technology with artificial intelligence (AI), 3D printing and nanotechnology,” according to the website for the city’s architects.

Berns told the NYT he also plans to build a university here.

The research campus will include “workplace/manufacturing hybrids” to encourage innovation and collaboration.

EYRC Architects + Tom Wiscombe Architecture

The commercial side of the city is focused on encouraging technologically forward ideas and development. One of the design firms, Ehrlich Yanai Rhee Chaney Architects, says on its website that these research building would serve as places “where inventions are prototyped and where they are conceived.”

The architecture is designed to encourage collaboration and creativity, with communal civic areas and large courtyards.

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