An industrious civilization has come into fruition on a planet that has a very irregular surface that is home to countless multitudes of caverns going deep beneath the planet and even merging with one another into one massive system of tunnels.

On average the mouth of the caverns can be anywhere from 100 meters to 3 kilometers wide, usually 500-800 meters deep before coming into contact with another cavern, and have walls that vary from 1 to 4 meters in thickness while being composed of mostly potassium feldspar, ice and quartz. There is also frequent seismic activity which can occasionally close and open different caves at times, but not often.

How would this society be able to construct a settlement stable enough to house a population of at least 10,000 inhabitants using technology comparable to our own industrial revolution?

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ So, what the problem? The ground is too fragile to support buildings, or zombies and creepers are coming out of the caverns at night? $\endgroup$
    – Alexander
    Jan 24, 2018 at 0:28
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Sounds not unlike Earth. We have all these problems. What have the problems underground got to do with the population overground ? We'd use all these caves to mine, if anything, so it's actually useful. $\endgroup$ Jan 24, 2018 at 4:48
  • $\begingroup$ If there is considerable seismic activity, the caverns will not lat long. $\endgroup$
    – Anixx
    Jan 24, 2018 at 5:45

1 Answer 1


If the surface has too little stable ground to support buildings, logically, the settlement would be built in the largest group of stable caverns. Holes can be drilled in the roof with large vents and pumps to circulate air, and any exhaust from factories can be vented out the same way.

If the surface has some stable areas but these are not capable of holding up a large building, buildings will be built to be one or two levels and spread out so if the ground collapses only a single house or part of it will fall. Factories and any heavy equipment will be built on the strongest ground, and if there are caverns below it, these will be braced if at all possible.


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