Okay so you know those cool multi alien species bars in Star Wars and other science fiction media, well I'm working on one of those for my story and wanted to know about some potential issues with the whole multi alien species mall (recreational area).

So this mall has four parts to it, the parking slots, the public area, the housing districts, and maintenance area. The parking slots and housing districts speak for themselves and are ship model and species specific. The public area is for shops and other set ups like that of a mall and the maintenance area is just the boring stuff like power production, cleanup, monitoring, etc.

Their are only 98 sentient alien kinds in the universe so far and all are carbon based with different biochemistries, they all breathe oxygen with an exception of two. Body shapes are diverse so not every species is humanoid either. The majority have bilateral symmetry with four limbs.

This giant mall is a huge space station, that orbits a gas giant. It has its own artificial gravity and other systems to protect the inhabitants from the harsh void of space.

And so my question for all of this is what are some problems that will arise from this set up?


closed as too broad by Vincent, JBH, elemtilas, RonJohn, Renan Apr 2 '18 at 4:07

Please edit the question to limit it to a specific problem with enough detail to identify an adequate answer. Avoid asking multiple distinct questions at once. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    $\begingroup$ Get in the habit of spellchecking everything. I don't know how you got this past the autospellcheck built into the website! Nonspellchecked documents in 2018 suggest you are trying to misspell - if that is the case, be more creative next time please. $\endgroup$ – Willk Apr 1 '18 at 20:37
  • $\begingroup$ This question is remarkably broad. Can you focus it on specific aspects of the mall? Can you tell us about the aliens? (what percentage are bipedal, how many breathe oxygen...) We need to narrow this down. $\endgroup$ – JBH Apr 1 '18 at 22:34
  • $\begingroup$ @Willk: In my experience, besides being vastly annoying, spellcheck introduces more errors than I would make on my own. Especially on a site like this, where many non-standard words may be used. If there is indeed a spell-checker built into this site, I figured out how to turn it off so long ago that I've forgotten how I did it :-) $\endgroup$ – jamesqf Apr 2 '18 at 3:05
  • $\begingroup$ Not really realistic: Amazon Interstellar would have rendered brick & mortar shopping obsolete generations ago :-) $\endgroup$ – jamesqf Apr 2 '18 at 3:07

Where Do You Poop?

Assuming there are a multitude of species visiting this place, where do they all go to the bathroom? What do you do with the sewage after its uhhh... deposited. I mean for all you know some species defecation process produces sulfuric acid while a silicon based life form is dropping off 30 pounds of sand. Sanitation becomes a nightmare when you have to accommodate dozens of different body morphology's and biological physiology types. Basically half your facility has to be row after row of different bathrooms and processing plants to accommodate the various differing methods to safely and cleanly process all of this waste. I mean maybe some of the 98 species can use the same facilities, but not all of them.......

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    $\begingroup$ I'd be very worried if my favorite bar was next to the bathroom for the species that urinates ethanol. $\endgroup$ – Michael Kutz Apr 2 '18 at 0:34
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    $\begingroup$ This was very much what I was thinking about when I suggested the question needed background data. How many bathrooms? bedrooms? cafeterias? atmospheres? Water/Fluid/Sewer/Garbage supplies? But I hadn't thought of what @MichaelKutz suggested, and yet it would be almost mandatory for "recycling" to maximize the efficiency (ahem) of the station. Babylon 5 solved this by ignoring almost all of it. If the OP takes that route, this question is almost moot. $\endgroup$ – JBH Apr 2 '18 at 2:19


Even ignoring different personal and cultural preferences (e.g., bland vs. spicy, alcoholic or not, vegetarian, etc.) there will likely be items that are vital to one species that are downright dangerous to another. Even within the human species we have significant numbers of people highly allergic to (or otherwise affected extremely negatively) peanuts, lactose, aspartame and many other substances. Every bar & restaurant would need to not only know what each species can tolerate but also keep many of the ingredients separate to avoid killing their patrons.


Again using humanity as an example - Europeans (and others) traveled to the Americas and killed millions inadvertently through disease (that's in addition to the many deliberately killed in conquest, but your Space Mall is a friendly gathering place). "Good" bacteria in humans might be deadly to another species, and the symbiotic insects on another species might naturally exhale neurotoxins deadly to humans, etc.


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