Europe’s first intelligent, solar-powered city set to open in Spain

Elysium city will have smart streets, sustainable hotels, a Disney-esque theme park and a Formula One track

Europe’s first smart city is set to be built in Castiblanco, Spain. Courtesy Cora Alpha
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Europe’s first smart city is set to be built in Castiblanco, Spain. Called Elysium City, the massive project will be home to several sustainably designed resorts, a huge theme park, an 18-hole golf course and its own high-speed train system.

In south-west Spain, close to the border with Portugal, it will be one of the largest smart cities in the world. It is being developed by Cora Alpha, the US tourism and leisure development company that created Disneyland California’s Adventure Theme Park, and Downtown Disney District that is headed up by former Walt Disney executive John Cor.

Spread over 1,200 hectares, the project will be developed in two stages. The first is set to open in 2023 and will include a five-star hotel, a huge theme park with its own on-site hotel, an adventure water park, a marina and a 40,000-seat stadium that will host sports and musical performances. It will also have 2,000 homes for Elysium's new residents.

As well as river slides and rides, the water park will incorporate the city's surrounding terrain to offer activities like abseiling, mountain biking trails and nature walks.

The second phase is set for completion in 2028 when another five luxury hotels and more leisure spots, including a Formula One track and an equestrian centre, will open.

Europe's first intelligent city will have a marina, an adventure water park and a Formula One track. Courtesy Cora Alpha

Working smarter

As a first-of-its-kind tourism destination in Europe, all of the design, construction and operations in Elysium City will focus on sustainability, efficiency and quality of life. This means visitors and residents will enjoy free gigabit speed Wi-Fi throughout the whole city, smart solar-powered streets, green coffee carts and smart park furniture with charging ports, information panels and built-in emergency alarms.

Designed to make life easier for visitors, smart kiosks will update tourists on real-time weather or traffic announcements, parking availability and more. They'll also act as two-way platforms where residents can communicate any concerns directly to local authorities.