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Inside plan to make ONE US city ‘physical center of the metaverse’ that can connect us between worlds

ONE US city is teaming up with a tech company to become the “physical center of the metaverse” that can connect us between worlds.

Orlando, Florida is working with game engine maker Unity Technologies to create a digital version of the city.

Orlando is working with Unity Technologies to create a 'digital twin' of the cityCredit: Orlando Economic Partnership

Known for being the home of Disney World and Universal, the city is no stranger to blending entertainment and tech, making it one of the best places to take on the metaverse.

“Orlando, for as long as I can remember has always been defined as one thing: The Magic Kingdom,” David Adelson, chief innovation officer for the city, told Venture Beat.

“And so what’s interesting is that in the background of all of that, which is great stuff, there has been innovation and technology. 

“For each one of the sectors and the building blocks that make up the metaverse, Orlando has been playing in them for a really long time.”

A “digital twin” of the metro area will be created using 3D technology to map out infrastructure, real estate, talent availability, climate change, and other scenarios.

“It’s not just Orlando companies paving the way for the future of the metaverse, but our universities,” said Mayor Buddy Dyer.

“From the University of Central Florida to Full Sail University, we are seeing students graduating well versed in modeling simulation and AR/VR. 

“With 550,000 college students within a 100-mile radius of Orlando, there is no comparison in the country when it comes to young talent. We are training the workforce of the future.”

Chief metaverse officer for Futures Intelligence Group, Cathy Hackl, said the easy access of talent and expertise is what continues to attract multiple tech startups to the area.

“From simulation and modeling to game development, world-building and even Imagineering, Orlando houses not only the talent but also the business-friendly climate incentives that are needed to develop the metaverse,” she said.

“As the future of the web takes shape, it’s clear the Orlando region is becoming the MetaCenter that will have a huge impact in the short- and long-term evolution of the metaverse.”

According to Adelson, it may take between 10 to 15 years for the metaverse to be completed as he believes a new generation will be able to adapt to the changes that will come along with it.