NEW BABILIMFrom the accounts of modern travellers, I had expected to have found on the site of [Babilim] more, and less, than I actually did. Less, because I could have formed no conception of the prodigious extent of the whole ruins, or of the size, solidity, and perfect state, of some of the parts of them; and more, because I thought that I should have distinguished some traces, however imperfect, of many of the principle structures... I imagined, I should have said: "Here were the walls, and such must have been the extent of the area. There stood the palace, and this most assuredly was the tower of Belus." - I was completely deceived: instead of a few insulated mounds, I found the whole face of the country covered with vestiges of building, in some places consisting of brick walls surprisingly fresh, in others merely of a vast succession of mounds of rubbish of such indeterminate figures, variety and extent, as to involve the person who should have formed any theory in inextricable confusion.
Memoir on the Ruins of Babylon by Claudius J. Rich
The elimination of zoning and height restrictions along urban coastlines has enabled the generation of hyper-urban sea walls that mitigate rising ocean waters. Building up is prioritized over building out, thus creating an extreme wall made of hundreds of urban layers. The old city becomes the foundation and bedrock of a new hyper-dense-city - the new urban and environmental reality layered over old urban forms. New Babilim is the world's largest, thickest, richest, and most diverse city - a city that despite being continuously flooded, continues to grow. New Babilim is the past and the future of human urbanism - hyper-scaled, monumental, bold, daring, innovative and diverse in aspiration, and a synthesis and reflection of the pure capitalist freedom of its individual denizens. New Babilim is the Last Wonder of the World.
Flood Level 200
Futuremasons, the heroic architects responsible for New Babilim's splendor, continue to build up over existing buildings. The city's vertical breadth rivals its horizontal expanse as its denizens vertically organize into those living in Flood Levels and Dry Levels. New Babilim builds up indefinitely to thicken its unprecedented urban mega-poche.
New Babilim is a giant machine actively resisting the rising waters while utilizing it for sustenance. From the lower exurbs and rural communities, the city appears as an imposing urban monolith that can be seen for hundreds of miles across the countryside. The rising waters breach the lowest points of the city's foundations as the outer zones of the city become flooded. Waterfalls burst from the foundations, flooding the old city, New Babilim's depths and sewer districts, but not before the water is filtered to become potable for its 1 billion inhabitants. The waterfalls feed forests and plains that begin to grow along New Babilim's miles-long facades, which in turn become fertile surfaces for vertical farming.
As if the canals of Venice inundated Manhattan, there's a certain romanticism in its condition as a modern ruin - as a city being ruthlessly destroyed and tirelessly constructed. The submerged buildings of the old city pile up on the seabed, creating an urban breakwater that resists the tall waves crashing into New Babilim's foundations. The ruins of the old city are natural stopgaps, and as the city builds up, the water continues to rise… In the face of hardship, the promise of growth and unlimited enterprise gives its citizens the ability to aspire and overcome.