It seems to my logic that building cities in the areas where productive farm land should be, is a waste of productive farm land. Deserts are a waste of functional space. They just sit there, the space unused. I like the concept in the article of a vertical city being built in the desert.
Build a couple of these and reclaim the low lands for farming. I know that these kind of concept proposals are just theories and will never get built, but it would make a better use of desert lands if put house THERE instead of cutting down forests and fields.