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Posted by  Richard Haut on November 11, 2003 at 06:30:59:

In Reply to:  Re: THE INTERNATIONAL HIGHRISE AWARD 2004 posted by Donald on November 11, 2003 at 04:02:45:

a very fair point - there is no question at all that the "skyscraper" is an entirely American idea (modernism may have adopted it - but it came first and in the US).

the difficulty, as with the sprawl, is in the planning rather than the individual structures. The notion was also adopted as a symbol of physical domination (such as Stalin's tower in Warsaw).

the transplanting of such dominant structures into older environments can sometimes be seen not as pride, but hostility, unless care is taken in the siting. Pelli's Canary Wharf Tower in London is, I believe, a very fine building - but it is also well outside the centre and so it works well. However within older cities there is an existing and established scale. For a building to be totally at variance with that scale can crush the local identity.

whether or not they have had their day economically, I do not know, but I suspect that there is a maximum scale which is not merely to do with engineering and materials limitations - or even economics, but their acceptance by the people that have to use them.

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