So far I thought that the Japanese held the illustre title as biggest copy cats in the world. I mean, after all, they are the ones that rebuilt some highlights of the 17th century dutch built culture as a theme park called "Huis ten Bosch".
But they have been beaten at their game by some people in Dubai, BLDGBLOG informs us. The French city of Lyon actually signed a licensing deal for 685 millions, so that a replica of a part of the city of Lyons will be built somewhere in the desert. The resulting hyper-city, that will actually have the identity of both Dubai and Lyons, and at the same time of neither of them, will be called Lyons-Dubai City, and "will cover an area of about 700 acres, roughly the size of the Latin Quarter of Paris, and will contain the university, a hotel school, a film library, subsidiaries of Lyon museums and a football training center run by Olympique Lyonnais."
And even though I'm the first to admit that Lyon is a charming city, this raises the question: why did they pick Lyon for this deal? Will everything be built the same, even the interiors, the bathrooms and all that, even if the people from Dubai probably want different standards as the French? And more importanty: can a city actually sell itself as a franchise?
This hyper-reality that mixes both realities, to make a overlaying new patchwork-identity of different semantical meanings is so insane, that I love it.