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Article: Mile-High Building
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JimM



Joined: 06 Jan 2005
Posts: 1373

PostPosted: Sun Aug 28, 2011 4:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Laurie Virr wrote:
the core of the building, especially at the lower levels would have been absolutely massive.


[img]

Preliminary sketch in Wright's own hand (Golden Beacon to the right next to Cheops):

[/img]

Feasible or not, it sure would transform the Chicago skyline....

[img][/img]
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Rood



Joined: 30 Oct 2010
Posts: 989
Location: Goodyear, AZ 85338

PostPosted: Sun Aug 28, 2011 4:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Monaghan had a lot of quirky ideas. If my memory serves me correctly, Jack Howe's design was supposed to be based on Wright's 1907 house for H.F. McCormick. Perhaps the most bizarre of Monaghan's proposals was his "Leaning Tower of Pizza", also designed by Birkerts. See:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tom_Monaghan's_Leaning_Tower_of_Pizza
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JimM



Joined: 06 Jan 2005
Posts: 1373

PostPosted: Sun Aug 28, 2011 4:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rood wrote:
"Leaning Tower of Pizza"


[img][/img]
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Palli



Joined: 12 Jul 2011
Posts: 237
Location: Oberlin, Ohio

PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 4:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Those Mile High drawings are glorious! can't imagine they could be topped aesthetically by a construction.
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DRN



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
Posts: 3491
Location: Cherry Hill, NJ

PostPosted: Tue Aug 30, 2011 8:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok, while we're churning this one over, I'll ask a question I've always had....

In the drawings JimM posted above, there is a difference in the silhouette of the tower in the preliminary sketch vs. the final rendering and the elevations published in later editions of An Autobiography. The preliminary sketch seems, at least to my eye, to be a pylon with smooth fins at its tips (or are those tension cables or guys) and inset fenestration. The final rendering shows a more articulated composition with stepped offsets. What am I seeing or not seeing?

I must admit despite the Illinois' economic, structural, and urban planning impracticalities, it is an elegant tower form. Though when it is shown in context with the current skyline of Chicago, as in the PhotoShopped rendering, the form becomes a too slender, too tall, visually jarring interloper. It makes one wonder was the cost and effort worth it to build a tower in which to top 60 stories are less than 500 square feet each and the sway on a windy day (in Chicago?!) would make a navy man queasy.
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Palli



Joined: 12 Jul 2011
Posts: 237
Location: Oberlin, Ohio

PostPosted: Tue Aug 30, 2011 9:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the artist Wright was drawing...not building.
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DavidC



Joined: 02 Sep 2006
Posts: 6439
Location: Oak Ridge, TN

PostPosted: Tue Aug 30, 2011 9:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Question out of curiosity:

If the flat, determinedly-horizontal, ground-hugging Prairie and Usonian designs are the penultimate expression of the mid-western prairie surroundings themselves, just where does a mile-high spire fit in???


David
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Tom



Joined: 30 Jan 2011
Posts: 2284
Location: Black Mountain, NC

PostPosted: Tue Aug 30, 2011 9:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think it's something like the tree that escaped the crowded forest.
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Macrodex



Joined: 12 Sep 2010
Posts: 233

PostPosted: Sun Sep 04, 2011 12:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote









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Tom



Joined: 30 Jan 2011
Posts: 2284
Location: Black Mountain, NC

PostPosted: Sun Sep 04, 2011 12:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the enlargements. There is more here than merely a publicity stunt.
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Jeff Myers



Joined: 22 Feb 2009
Posts: 1761
Location: Tulsa

PostPosted: Sun Sep 04, 2011 2:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

DANG WOW thanks Macrodex.
I actually have a paper model of the Mile High, never built it myself,
but is neat to finally see interior plans, I have only seen sketchy
floor plans only
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Jeff T
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Rood



Joined: 30 Oct 2010
Posts: 989
Location: Goodyear, AZ 85338

PostPosted: Sun Sep 04, 2011 6:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

DRN ... somewhere long ago I read each floor of the Mile High would extend up to ten feet beyond the window line ... to minimize office worker's sense of discomfort at high elevations. Mr. Wright also claimed that there would be "no sway" at the top, due to the building's tripod structure. I can't quite imagine that to be true, but who can contradict the master?

David C ... Mr. Wright saw the skyscraper taking over every city in such a fashion that overcrowding effectively eliminated the possibility of having natural sunlight and clean air at street level, not to mention the ubiquity of clogged streets. The Mile-High was a suggestion that we put all those "little" skyscrapers into a few big ones .... at the expense of demolishing most everything else. The above illustration showing the Mile-High amidst a forest of "little" Chicago skyscrapers is thus highly misleading.

As for paper models of the Mile High, Jeff Myers, I'm looking forward to seeing the model when the Milwaukee exhibition opens in Phoenix next January. Someone should build it here. What better place to go up high ... The upper floors wouldn't need air-conditioning. Imagine the saving!
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Jeff Myers



Joined: 22 Feb 2009
Posts: 1761
Location: Tulsa

PostPosted: Sun Sep 04, 2011 7:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If I had the room I would blow it up to 1/2 the scale of the mile if I could.
It is interesting to see how this could have worked but would make sense,
except the cost of the tower.
I noticed on one of the drawings there is flags on them.
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Macrodex



Joined: 12 Sep 2010
Posts: 233

PostPosted: Sun Sep 04, 2011 8:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Mr. Wright saw the skyscraper taking over every city in such a fashion that overcrowding effectively eliminated the possibility of having natural sunlight


Wasn't a precursor to this the Skyscraper Regulation project? I think Sullivan predated that, even; I recall him proposing some sort of steps along the street, regarding building height, i.e. one tall, one low, one tall, etc.
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Roderick Grant



Joined: 29 Mar 2006
Posts: 8360

PostPosted: Mon Sep 05, 2011 2:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The upcoming 9/11 observation prompted an article in the Los Angeles Times on 9/4 about tall buildings constructed and planned since 2001. More than 350 towers of 663' or more have been built, as contrasted with 235 buildings of that height constructed in all the years prior. Of the examples shown, the most common template is The Illinois. Kingdom Tower planned for Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, will be at 3280' the newest "tallest building in the world," until the next one is built. All still shy of FLW's 5280'. What is significant about Kingdom Tower is that it will be surrounded by low-rise construction, making it another "tree that escaped the crowded forest."
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