I'm not sure how efficient planned cities are, but as long as they're planned by private developers and not government agencies then I've got no problem with them. From reader JV are two South Korean projects under development; first, a city built around robotics.
If South Korea can really been seen as a look into our future, it looks like our future will be full of a lot of robots.
That's because South Korea is planning to build "Robot Land," an industrial city built specifically for the robotics industry. It'll have all sorts of facilities for the research, development, and production of robots, as well as things like exhibition halls and even a stadium for robot-on-robot competitions. The $530 million project should get underway sometime in 2009, which means we should see our own robot city here in the States around 2013.
I, for one, welcome our new robotic overlords. It'll be interesting to see what kind of innovations spring from this "city". Presumably the infrastructure will be designed to facilitate robotic navigation and perception of the environs.
Second is a city build around people... browse the site to see the difference between this development and other mixed-use industrial districts.
Built on 1,500 Acres of reclaimed land and soon to be connected to Incheon International Airport via a new bridge, Songdo is the most ambitious undertaking of its kind. Currently under construction, this Master Planned city will an unsurpassed Quality of Life - including a 100-acre Central Park, International School, International Hospital, Ecotarium, and Museum amongst its many amenities.
The city's plan includes fifty million square feet of office space - including a landmark 65-story Tower and Convention Center, thirty million square feet of Residential Space, ten million square feet of Retail, five million square feet of Hotel Space and ten million square feet of green space. Because of its central location within the Yellow Sea Economic Basin - which comprises an economically active population of more than 200 million with a GDP of USD 1.3 trillion - Songdo will act as the business hub for multinational companies in Northeast Asia.