What makes Wakanda, a fictional country in Africa, so alluring? Aside from being a place where Blackness is elevated and protected, it is highly advanced on the technology front. This makes it the envy of the Marvel universe.

Will we see anything like it in real life? Who knows. But an article published by CNN suggests that Wakanda could be the blueprint for future cities. This applies to infrastructure only. It’s not likely we’ll be able to visit ancestral planes or be healed with vibranium, but we can dream.

You don’t have to be a comic book fan to recognize the impact of the Black Panther movie. And if the earliest reviews are anything to go by, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, will be a worthy successor.

What Can We Learn From Wakanda?

Vishaan Chakrabarti, who wrote A Country of Cities: A Manifesto for an Urban America, believes there’s plenty Wakanda can teach the real world.

For instance, the kingdom centers people and not cars.

Chakrabarti said, “if you watch Black Panther carefully, there’s the city. It’s got all this mass transit and all these housing parks and stuff. The moment you leave the city, you’re in farmland. And there’s this connection between rural life and urban life.”


Wakanda Centers People, Not Vehicles

Photo by Juan Torres Padilla/Getty Images

Thembisa S. Mshaka wrote, Black Panther reminds us that elders contribute wisdom and stability and young people provide innovation and fresh perspective. And that we need to hold tightly to it all.”

In the absence of cars, the people of Wakanda get around on foot or by using levitating, magnetic trains.

Hannah Beachler, the production designer for Black Panther, said:

“I think they’ve evolved past cars. Futurism is not just about the evolution of technology or transportation. It’s the evolution of people.”

Certain Places See The Value Of Being Car Free

There are quite a few places which are completely free of cars or have designated car-free zones. The air quality is much better as a result.

Venice is probably the most famous car-free city. If you drive there, you’ll have to park outside the city limits.

Copenhagen is a biking capital, while cyclists in Amsterdam don’t take kindly to cars veering into their lanes.

On the Kenyan island of Lamu, the only way to get around is by walking, biking or riding a donkey.

Will Cities In The US follow Wakanda's Lead?

Time will tell.

CNN explained, “whether major American cities ever transform from where we are today — heavily suburbanized and car-dependent — remains to be seen. But all we have to do is look to Wakanda for an idea of how our cities of the future could work.”