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• From building a colossal pyramid over Tokyo Harbour to ¬¬¬¬¬¬covering Manhattan
with a giant dome, we count ten shocking construction projects that almost happened!
10 – Dubai’s ‘The World’, • Dubai is the capital of weird building
projects and this project, known as ‘The World’, looked set to be one for the ages.
That was until a shift in the economy caused plans to fall through.
• The concept behind The World was to create a set of islands shaped like Earth’s continents
off the coast of Dubai. These islands would then be sold off and lived on – presumably
so megalomaniac rich folk could roleplay ruling the world or something.
• Construction of the islands was completed, but the associated structures were left unfinished.
The project has now stalled out for so long that the islands are starting to erode into
the sea. It seems that The World, like the real world it’s based on, is slowly going
to shit. 9 – Vertical Farming,
• Vertical farming is a sci-fi inspired solution to the very real problem that we
might one day run out of fertile farming land. The idea is to grow crops in purpose-built
skyscrapers, utilising all that wasted vertical space.
• Vertical farming offers floor after floor of farmable land and a controllable climate
that could be used to grow seasonal crops all year round.
• The Dragonfly is a proposed vertical farm that is shaped like a dragonfly wing and situated
in the middle of New York City. Unfortunately, the technology required for sustainable large-scale
vertical farming hasn’t caught up with our aspirations yet, so it remains a pipe dream.
8 – Shimizu Mega-City Pyramid, • The Mega-City Pyramid is a Japanese architect’s
proposed solution to Tokyo Harbour’s overpopulation. It’s basically a giant, floating pyramid
that could easily house over a million people and fit 100-storey skyscrapers inside it.
• The Pyramid is planned to be made up of five trusses stacked on top of one another,
each one roughly the size of the Great Pyramid of Giza in Eygpt.
• If built, it would be the largest structure on the planet. Of course, its size is so great
that none of the construction materials we currently use could withstand its immense
weight. If even one truss failed, nearly a million people would be crushed or drown.
• There’s also the obvious risk that something this size will attract Godzilla attacks, so
for now this will have to remain something you see in an anime.
7 – Sutyagin House, • In 1992, Nikolai Sutyagin grew tired of
his home in Arkhangelsk, Russia, so decided to make some expansions. He added an extra
floor, and then another, then another – until before he knew it he had world’s tallest
wooden house. • At its peak, the eccentric Russian’s
home was thirteen stories and forty-four metres high. Nikolai was never satisfied and wanted
to add more and more – that is until he went to prison. When he got out, he no longer
had the funds to support the construction, so the house rotted and broke down around
him. • Arkhangelsk’s city council deemed it
a fire hazard and eventually forced Nikolai to dismantle his wooden castle. All that remains
now is the regular-sized original home, a few pictures and some salty, salty tears.
6 – Project Chariot, • Project Chariot was a misguided construction
project aimed to widen the Panama Canal and dig a harbour in Alaska. This would be accomplished
by US forces dropping nukes. • This proposal came shortly after H-bombs
were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Amidst all that pesky bad publicity, the US was looking
for a way to prove that atomic weaponry could be used for peaceful, productive purposes.
• Fortunately, the project never eventuated because of people living in Point Hope, a
village fifty kilometres from the proposed bombing site. They’d heard of a little thing
called radiation poisoning and refused to buy into the government’s lies that no harm
would come to them. They staged a massive protest, which ultimately led to the project
being canned and moved to the Nevada desert. 5 – Paris’s Road Tower,
• In 1937, a 700-meter tall ‘barber pole-style’ tower was proposed to be installed in Paris.
• The top of the tower would be a hotel, which people could reach by driving up a road
that spiralled around the tower. There was also going to be a 400-car capacity parking
garage on top, a restaurant in the middle and a monorail system that would slowly lower
cars to the ground. • Fortunately this insane accident magnet
was never completed. 4 – The Manhattan Dome,
• Domed cities were a staple of science fiction in the Sixties, so it’s not surprising
that Buckminster Fuller, an architect from that time, proposed doming one of the most
famous cities in the world: New York. • The dome would cover most of Manhattan
and filter pollution out of the air. The dome would be kept at a constant temperature, meaning
there’d be no need for heating in the winter or cooling in the summer.
• Unfortunately, no one really went for the idea. The cost to implement it would’ve
been astronomical, and, since no one knew if it would really work, it seemed safer to
leave domed cities in the realm of science fiction.
3 – Burj Khalifa Fabric Wrap, • This project is by far the least practical.
Effectively the idea is to put a giant fabric condom over the world’s tallest building,
Dubai’s Burj Khalifa. The project would require an enormous sheet that would have
to withstand exposure to harsh elements and strain, so it bet it would cost a lot.
• What function would it serve? None. This is basically just a really expensive, really
ambitious art installation. • The lead designer said the project aims
to “create a fluid urban experience” and “explore creative potential in the public
realm” – whatever the hell that means. 2 – Plan Voisin,
• In the 1920s, architect Le Corbusier wanted to completely level Paris, the most romantic
city in the world, so he could rebuild it in a very different way.
• The plan was called Plan Voisin and involved erecting eighteen enormous glass towers. The
towers would make up Paris’s business district and would be connected by subway stations
and surrounded by an extensive garden city. • Back then, the idea of bulldozing Paris
wasn’t all that unthinkable, as the city had become dirty and decrepit.
1 – Freedom Ship, • The Freedom Ship was a huge ship which
doubled as a self-sufficient city. First proposed in the Nineties (when stupid shit seemed like
good ideas), the 25-storey ship was to travel the globe every two years, stopping at all
major ports and having residents disembark by helicopter.
• The ship would have a 50,000-person capacity and a self-sustaining economy, with jobs,
schools, shops and probably a really good strip club – y’know, everything a city
needs. • Unfortunately it didn’t work out because
very few people were willing to permanently relocate onto a ship -- especially when there
were concerns it could be the next Titanic. • Even if all those land-lovers changed
their minds, it would still cost $10 billion to get the ambitious project off the ground.
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10 Outrageous Construction Projects That Almost Happened

500 Folder Collection
林海 published on July 5, 2016
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