As a result of the space race ending, and with our trips to the moon having ceased a long time ago (though the Apollo missions left a lot behind), serious plans to inhabit our moon have largely been relegated to the realm of science-fiction.
The minds behind Eleven Magazine have other ideas though, with the architecture zine recently running a design competition called Moontopia, where architects, designers, artists, academics and dreamers submitted detailed plans for self-sufficient lunar-colonies.
They included the off-moon ‘Momentum Virium’, which has several habitable rings, a space elevator to the surface and a disc to reflect sunlight onto the station, and Modulpia, a design that would see 3D printing robots forming an underground colony fit for human habitation.
The winner, though, was Test Lab, a design based around the gradual expansion of a colony using 4D printers to produce origami like sheets that could be self-assembled into grand structures by colonists. The material of these structures would also be capable of turning the hydrogen from solar winds into oxygen atoms.
Life on the Moon it seems, just got a little bit closer.
You can read up on all the notable entrants here.