Construction History: Missing The Point

The Champlain Building in Chicago, built in 1894, was demolished in 1915. The picture above, which could pass for a construction photo, shows the beginning of the structural demo: the windows and interior build-out are gone, and the frame and exterior-wall removal has just started. Holabird & Roche, the architects for Champlain, took the opportunity …

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Another good piece on recycling at the scale of buildings: Pass the Leftovers! by Matt Burgermaster looks at the issue of reuse of building materials during demolition, using the ongoing demolition of the Union Carbide Building as an example. The statistic that jumps out at you: NYC produces 6 million tons of construction and demolition …

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Temporary And Going

I’ve written a bit about the new West Thames Street Bridge – a pedestrian crossing over the near-highway that is West Street – and thought that its immediate predecessor, the Rector Street Bridge, was worth a few words. The origins of both bridges are interesting in that they lie in other demolition. When the elevated …

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A Provocative Headline And A Real Issue

The first thing that came to mind when I read “A New Idea in Architecture? No New Buildings” by Thomas de Monchaux was that writers for periodicals, whether published on paper or the web, don’t usually choose their own headlines, so Mr. de Monchaux might not be responsible for the somewhat misleading title. He is …

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Nothing Is Easy

270 Park Avenue, a late-1950s skyscraper, is currently being demolished. The picture above shows the south side of the building at street level. Those two sentences are just about the only thing that I can say that are undisputed fact, as everything else on this topic is either politically and architecturally fraught or is speculation …

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