"On the moon village, we would like to combine the different capabilities of space-faring nations, be it robotic or be it human, to look also for different activities, be it pure science, be it also business, even tourism or mining," Johann-Dietrich Woerner, the ESA's director general, said in a video posted to the agency's website on Tuesday.
ESA said the moon's own natural resources, including water ice, metals and minerals, could be used to build and sustain a village. A structure could be 3-D printed and space rovers could land on the moon, inflate a dome and begin constructing a building to protect astronauts.
The lunar village is likely to be built at the moon's North or South Pole, areas of which are cast in near-permanent sunlight or darkness. Potential hazards for astronauts and tourists include solar and cosmic radiation, meteorites and extreme weather.