Site Visits Require Fast Decisions

by Don Friedman on February 24, 2018

What Made It Possible

February 24, 2018

That’s the frame of the Dime Savings Bank in Detroit, visible during construction. Biggerer here.

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Freshness Elsewhere

February 23, 2018

The change in both perception and physical reality caused by skyscrapers (that I’ve been talking about) was, of course, not limited to any one location. The picture above (high-resolution here) is Court Square in Memphis in 1906. The square appears to be a pleasant small park, surrounded by buildings with a fairly consistent four- and […]

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More Freshness

February 22, 2018

To continue yesterday’s train of thought, here’s the Chrysler Building in 1930, roughly a year after completion. Again, if you want a very high-resolution copy, click here. We’re looking northwest to the Chrysler, at 42nd Street and Lexington Avenue. The tall, vertically-striped building on the right is the Daily News building at 42nd and Second; […]

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Looking With Fresh Eyes

February 21, 2018

That’s the Singer Tower as seen from Liberty Street, just east of Nassau Street, in 1910. If you’d like to download a ridiculously high-resolution copy, click here and wait a while. This picture emphasizes something that’s easy to forget in 2018, and that’s how alien the early skyscrapers were compared to the cityscape around them. […]

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The Details of a Technological System

February 20, 2018

This is an underside view of the heel connection of a heavy timber truss. The piece of wood at the top of the picture is the bottom chord, roughly 12 inches by 12 inches in section, and you can’t see the top chord above it. The bolt ties the two chords together, but the real […]

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Before “Presidents Day”

February 19, 2018
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Another Branch of Engineering

February 18, 2018

An absolutely fantastic piece in the New Yorker: Why Paper Jams Persist. I’m no more familiar with the mechanical engineering analysis and design of printers than any other person who’s had to clear a paper jam, but I still hung on every word. Design is all about balancing different constraints. Those we deal with are […]

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An Old-Fashioned Name

February 17, 2018

To an American, that’s just a picturesque streetscape in central London. But what’s that store in the center?

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Less-Ambivalent Ambivalence

February 16, 2018

If you’re looking for a good long article on some of the difficulties in landscape preservation, you won’t do better than this, from Urban Omnibus: Under Annihilation’s Sign: Public Memory and Prospect Park’s Battle Pass. Central and western Brooklyn was the site of the Battle of Long Island in 1776, the largest set-piece battle of the […]

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