Freedom will dwarf the Queen Elizabeth II and become a permanent home for 50,000 people. “Walk in a straight line for about 12 minutes,” “If you don’t dawdle, you’ll cover slightly less than a mile. Now, make a right turn and walk beyond the length of two football fields. Duplicate these lines to make a rectangle, then look up to the height of a 25-story building. This is what Freedom will be
“Freedom will be large enough to bring on more than 50,000 residents, 15,000 employees, 20,000 day guests and still have four times as much roaming-around square footage per person as the most modern cruise liners,” Nixon says during POPULAR MECHANICS’ visit to see how his ambitious plan is progressing. Taller than the highest buildings in most American cities and topped with a runway that can handle jets, Freedom may someday be the globe-trotting address for 17,000 homes and 4000 businesses. Its dimensions are so colossal that it will have to be assembled at sea. Once it’s built, Freedom will circle the earth every two years, following the balmy breezes as it approaches the world’s major ports. The wealthiest of her “citizens” will leave their 15-ft. by 80-ft. ocean-view apartments and board their private jets or yachts for jaunts to shore. Meanwhile, the 15,000 people who work aboard the ship will gear up for the next on-rush of day visitors anxious to shop at its duty-free stores and guests checking in to vacation in its hotels and time-share condominiums.
Once under way, life aboard Freedom will be more like living in a bustling city than being on a vacation cruise. Because of its size, the ship will have its own railway system. Courtyards set about its decks will create interior park and recreation areas. Nixon has calculated that the resident population can support its own local economy, which means that residents will, in many cases, also be operating businesses at sea, in malls throughout the length of the ship.