The exterior design of a community constructed out of prefabricated modules can take on numerous characteristics of look and feel. These characteristics are influenced by factors including: number of community members, geographic or physical location, services offered by the community, and whether the infrastructure is totally or partially subterranean.
In other words, the size of a community and the services offered by the community determine the number and size of modules used in the infrastructure design. The infrastructure may be for above ground, below ground, or a combination; be located in the mountains with steep hillsides or on a flat level plateau; and may be on rocky terrain or a sandstone bed. Whatever the case, how the exterior of the community looks is determined completely by number and type of services being included in the plan.
The Project TriStar community is designed to support a minimum of 1,000 members, is completely subterranean other than external access points, and provides all the services and features that are necessary to achieve 100% subterranean self-sustainability.
Some of the keys to achieving the infrastructure objectives are a balance between modularity, efficiency, and expense while meeting and exceeding the necessities of 100% self-sustainability, redundancy, and safety.
The below image provides a visual representation of the exterior layout of the Project TriStar subterranean design that can support up to one thousand (1,000) people. Details on the interior design and module specifications are also available. In this representation, the blue modules represent entrance, exits, and passageways. The yellow and silver modules represent all other community functions including: living quarters, food production, bathrooms & showers, fabrication & maintenance, community services, kitchen and food preparation, health services, assembly & dining, common area, utilities, and storage.
Once the size of the modular community is established, the next step is to make this infrastructure subterranean. Project TriStar considered three methods for subterranean site development. The more common and publicized subterranean development method involves digging or excavating down into the earth, lowering the modules into that excavated hole, and then back filling to cover the modules. The second method involves excavation of the surface area, positioning the modules into the excavated area, and then moving the earth from around the structure and over the top of the modules creating an elevated appearance from the outside.
The third method involves positioning the modules near a small hillside or rise in elevation, excavating the surface area, positioning the modules near this hillside, and then moving the dirt from the top of the hillside and over the entire structure. In this last method, it's necessary to choose a site location that provides a landscape for strategic positioning of the structure near rolling hills. With any one of these subterranean methods, it's important that enough dirt is placed on top of the modules to ensure adequate protection from any external cosmic, thermal, or environmental conditions.
There are a variety of considerations in determining which of these three methods to use including: logistics, structural integrity, cost, construction time, and geographic or physical location. For all of these reasons, Project TriStar has chosen this last method for creating it's subterranean modular community. This means the Project TriStar community is situated on the surface, next to a hillside, and earth is moved over the top of the entire structure.