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Artificial Islands of the World

Updated on March 2, 2013
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Man Made Islands

There are several islands in the world that have been created by man. The reasons for doing so have been varied and some have had questionable results. With land disappearing into the oceans and seas, building cities that float could be a very big reality in the future.

There have been many trail blazers that have attempted to construct artificial islands. The results have not always been as expected. Problems that have been haunting and inherent include sands eroding, sinking, navigational channels that fill up with silt, deterioration issues and financial woes.

The World is sinking into the ocean. Not the world that we live in, but the exclusive and private islands off the coast of Dubai where only the rich can reside, or not! While owning your own private island might be a dream come true it's a suicidal nightmare for others.

The Palms & The World Islands

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The Sky is Falling or The World is Sinking?

The growth of the artificial islands situated off the coast of Dubai have been brought to a screeching halt after problems due to the wind and ocean reclaiming the sand that comprises the islands. Engineers didn't count on that.

This man made disaster has caused the owner of the company, who was reported to have paid $24 million for "Ireland", John O'Dolan, to commit suicide amid the crumbling luxury resort islands.

The man who bought Britain for a cool $43 million is serving a seven year jail sentence for bad checks. As of 2010 there has only been one house constructed on The World Islands. A quick loook at google maps can show how these island clusters are breaking apart and spreading out forming the unpredictable Islands.

I guess you just can't live in your own little world after all.

No Man's Land Fort

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A markerNo Man's Land Fort, Portsmouth -
Portsmouth, UK
get directions

Sea Forts

There are four forts that have been constructed in the Solent just off of Portsmouth in the United Kingdom. There were originally five artificial islands that began construction around 1860. Ryde Fort, St. Helens, Spitbank Fort, Horse Sands and it's evil twin, No Man's Land Fort.

Ryde Fort was an initial failure and construction was abandoned due to an unstable foundation.

St. Helen's Fort was completed in 1870 and is now privately held. It was offered up for sale to any bidders in excess of £200,000 in January, 2003.

No Man's Land was put up for sale in the 1960s but wasn't purchased until the 1980s. It became the center of a legal battle when it was forced to close in 2004 due to legionella bacteria growth found in the water system.

Harmesh Pooni was protesting the ownership and sale of No Man's Land Fort. He claimed he owned the 49 gun, two tiered island. Pooni barricaded himself in and posted notices for everyone else to stay out. Eventually, he was ousted and the fort was acquired in April, 2012 by Clarenco. Owners say they have plans to restore it as a luxury hotel with its 27 bedrooms and two helipads, pool, arcade and spectacular atrium. Other sources say it's being revived for a high security level, private conference center.

Incidentally, Clarenco also currently owns Spitbank Fort, Horse Sands and No Man's Land Fort.

The Principality of Sealand

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The Principality of Sealand - Official Coat of Arms

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The Principality of Sealand

In the 1960s the BBC and Pirate Radio Staions were at odds. Retired British Army Major Paddy Roy Bates knew a thing or two about Maritime Law. He consorted with his lawyers and they acquired the Anti-war craft platform about 7 miles off the English Coast by using a loophole regarding abandoned property,

In 1976 the courts were tired of the media circus surrounding the platform so they allowed the retired Major to claim it as a sovereign nation. Bates took possession, declared himself a Prince and his wife, Joan, a Princess and they began to sell stamps, passports and coins.

The Bates family made a home of the platform and lived in it for many years.

Sadly, Major Bates passed away in October, 2012.

The property is now being leased by a company called Havenco. They are currently advertising their plans to roll out a "secret." They are planning to conduct a private storage facility for computer communications. Part of the law that will provide them with a safe haven for doing so, has to do with laws regarding internet privacy and the arms of the law and where they can reach.

The Principality of Sealand

A markerNorth Sea -
North Sea
get directions

Thilafushi

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Thilafushi - Garbage Island

This is perhaps the ugliest and most toxic island in the universe. Thilafushi is the dump for the gorgeous Maldive Islands. It isn't hard to find. It is smoldering just four miles off the main island of Male. Created in 1992, the island was the answer for the growing pollutants left behind by tourists and inhabitants of the islands.

Over 300 tons of garbage is transported by boats daily. It's estimated at 7 kilometers long by a width of approximately 200 meters across at the narrowest point. It grows about one square meter each day.

Rubbish including batteries, asbestos, lead and solid waste are all mixed together and leaks into the sea. In May, 2012, the BBC likened it to an apocalyptic condition.

What is in the Future?

The land mass of the world will only get smaller while the population grows there are going to be more problems. Due to global warming, sinkholes and over industrialization our world is being chipped away. We need to find more resourceful ways to occupy space.

Will floating cities that can be piece mealed together at will, be a reality in the very near future?

Some dreamers hope that it will work. Plans have been in progress to design floating cities that can be interlocked like legos. Designs have been created that will not only offer housing but include the use of plants to provide green house gases as walls, for example. These structures will be made to withstand storms and the natural elements.

An interesting point made by one desiger is that these floating dynasties would allow new and exciting forms of government for experimentation. The thought is a little bit frightening and makes me wonder about the penal system. Will we also create little floating jail cells? Hospitals and schools? Will a water world be eventual?

Mega Engineering - Floating Cities

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  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    It really is...and I'd just love to own one! Lol. Thanks so much for the comment!

  • Eileen Hughes profile image

    Eileen Hughes 4 years ago from Northam Western Australia

    Its incredible how they build floating cities.

  • RealHousewife profile image
    Author

    Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Thank you so very much Mike!!

  • Mike Robbers profile image

    Mike Robbers 4 years ago from London

    Interesting and informative hub. Voted up and shared.

  • DDE profile image

    Devika Primić 4 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

    Incredible write p on the artificial islands, most interesting and informative.

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    I read about some in the Uk but they weren't such a disaster. Gosh - I'd love to have my very own island though! Lol

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Or not clever...oh Michelle it makes me sick to think of all that leaking into the ocean. What a dreaded event...no wonder all the ocean life is dying out!

  • Melovy profile image

    Yvonne Spence 4 years ago from UK

    Very interesting hub Kelly. The UK seems to have more than its share of man-made islands! That World off Dubai sounds like a sad failure of a place, and the one in the Maldives is grim. We were in the Maldives in 1993. I don't remember seeing it , but I don't suppose there was much on it then.

  • midget38 profile image

    Michelle Liew 4 years ago from Singapore

    Wow, Garbage Island.....a whole island for incineration! Man is certainly very clever. Thanks for sharing, Kelly, passing this on!

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Ha! Sharyn that is a great idea - rather than having prisons we could just toss them onto "Criminal Island" and they have to figure it out for themselves? Oh my now there's a great saga!

  • Sharyn's Slant profile image

    Sharon Smith 4 years ago from Northeast Ohio USA

    If I was a gazillionaire, I'd buy you and CC each your own island - Kel! Wow, such great research here. Really makes ya think. Personally, I think islands should be built as a place to put all "death row" people to fend for themselves with no way off the island. Great read!

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Cyndi - I think you will be a gazillionaire when your artwork is discovered! I was kinda hoping you might agree to buy ME an island?

  • cclitgirl profile image

    Cynthia Sageleaf 4 years ago from Western NC

    Saw that first comment up there...land lubber? HAHAHA. I'm a land lubber. It's cool that we can construct islands and all, but I think about the long-term effects and how they will survive. Apparently not so well. Oops. Oh well...I get this sneaky feeling that I personally will never have the money to deal with buying an island. HA!

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Wouldn't it enick159? I'd so love to own a whole island - even a small one! We can call it whatever anyone wants but I'd like it to be a REAL island...not the sand truck kind!

    Thanks for the comment!

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Yes so true Glimmer Twin...nature does have a way of taking back. I don't think I could sleep on one of those islands...I'd be waiting to be swept out to sea! Lol

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Yeah the Palms might be holding up better than the whole world! Lol. Sad but true...all the sand is slowly getting reclaimed by the ocean. Thanks!

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi Eddy and thanks so much! Good to see you out and about!

  • enick159 profile image

    Evan Nickel 4 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

    Wow, that really was interesting. Too bad that the islands off of Dubai aren't going to survive. How cool would it be to say that you owned the entire island of Britain!

  • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

    Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

    Fascinating and a little scary. I have seen photos of the ones in Dubai and wondered what would happen over time. Nature has a way of reclaiming things in this world. Up and interesting.

  • idigwebsites profile image

    idigwebsites 4 years ago from United States

    Really man has been doing herculean and incredible feats. I watched the making of the the Palms on NatGeo. It's amazing that they have a way to make a strong foundation under the sea. :)

    Voted up and awesome. :))

  • Eiddwen profile image

    Eiddwen 4 years ago from Wales

    A brilliant hub and thank you for sharing.

    Enjoy your day.

    Eddy.

  • RealHousewife profile image
    Author

    Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Ha! hey Prince! How are ya! Thank you!

    I did do a TON of research, again! I had this one on the back burner for months! Seriously. I work very slowly at times...I don't know why I can't just pick up the pace a little!

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Actually, meant to link it but Ive written about floating homes:). I'm so bad about linking my own stuff in! It's done, in many cities! Oregon has a few floating home communities! They are so cool, Id worry about having a baby or toddler on one though!

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Doesn't it? HWB I couldn't live like that...Ive listened to recordings of what it sounds like in Sealand...it's CREEPY! Every moment I'd be wearing a life vest and wondering when I was gonna wake up all wet! Lol

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    OMG! Drbj - Ive been watching that ordeal in the news and it's so freaky! We are making this world a brittle piece of junk by eating its resources. I know for instance that gold and silver look really pretty for jewelry. Once we mine it all out - I suppose it's going to look gorgeous when we are all buried underground with it! Global warming? Floods and Tsunami's? We better start looking for another way to live on this planet!

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    I saw that Susan! They have some cool ones in Canada and I was wondering if you'd heard of them and if they're close to you. That would make some cool pictures and you could do one about those!

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi livingsta! Thank you so much!

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Yeah Lela - have you heard of the ship called "The World?" Look it up but it's millions to live there! Yep...you know I wanna live on water! No doubt!

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hi Prasetio! Thank you!

    I am worried about where my kids are going to live when the whole world turns to Swiss Cheese! Lol

  • The Frog Prince profile image

    The Frog Prince 4 years ago from Arlington, TX

    Great Hub Kelly. Did a little research along the way did ya?

    TFP

  • Maralexa profile image

    Marilyn Alexander 4 years ago from Vancouver, Canada and San Jose del Cabo, Mexico

    Great Hub RealHousewife! take a look at http://inhabitat.com/lilypad-floating-cities-in-th... for the Lilypad housing project with greater than 50,000 homes.

    What about houseboats? Could they be "tied" together to form a floating community? It's doable on a small scale when boats are moored together for a short time (say, a weekend.)

  • healthwriterbob profile image

    healthwriterbob 4 years ago from United States

    Hi RealHousewife,

    Very interesting hub. Sealand looks like a forbidding and desolate place. Don't know how people could live there for many years. Voted up.

  • drbj profile image

    drbj and sherry 4 years ago from south Florida

    Your timing is incredibly scary, Kelly. A tremendous sinkhole just opened in central Florida, and swallowed a guy right out of the bedroom of his house. His brother fell in, too, but was able to escape. The survivor's unfortunate brother though has not been found since the sinkhole is too deep and precarious for rescue attempts.

    So I think for the present I will pass on living on a floating city. In fact, I'm not too comfortable with the thought that much of Florida is built on sand, then clay, then limestone which is porous like Swiss cheese. Too much water seeps in and Voila! sinkholes appear. Scary!!!

  • Just Ask Susan profile image

    Susan Zutautas 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

    Really interesting hub. In Montreal Île Notre-Dame, which is where Expo 67 was held is on a man made island. As far as I know it's doing okay :)

  • livingsta profile image

    livingsta 4 years ago from United Kingdom

    Very interesting information! Voting up and sharing!

  • Austinstar profile image

    Lela 4 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

    I've always wanted my very own floating city. It's called a yacht! They make those super huge cruise ships now. There is no reason why they couldn't turn them into giant condos with only a bit of modification. And the navy has had floating communities for ages!

    The plan to build permanent islands is folly in my opinion. But to each his own.

    Waterworld? I would love that one! No grass to mow.

  • prasetio30 profile image

    prasetio30 4 years ago from malang-indonesia

    Very informative hub. I can't imagine when the land sunk and we live on the artificial land. Maybe it will happen when the arctic was melted, right. So, the artificial land could be an alternative for us. My friend, you have done a great research. Thanks for share with us. Voted up!

    Prasetio

  • RealHousewife profile image
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    Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Haha Martie! See? I was really all thinking about this stuff! Where my kids will live in fifty years? I think about how much of the world has dissipated during my own lifetime and it's scary!

    I'd love a floating city...with lots of gorgeous plants and animals! That would be the bomb.

  • MartieCoetser profile image

    Martie Coetser 4 years ago from South Africa

    Wow! I never thought that floating cities could be built. After reading this I am afraid I am going to dream about a sinkhole......

    Very interesting and informative! Thank you, Realhousewife :)

  • RealHousewife profile image
    Author

    Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

    Hey Bill...I know you are a land lubber:) LOL. It's super cool what might become reality? I'd love to live on a floating city...but I get to be the Queen! Lol

  • billybuc profile image

    Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

    It really is incredible what man can do, isn't it? Great hub that points out so many pluses and minuses regarding man's engineering feats.