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Thread: About the speed of building and building fast

  1. #1

    Default About the speed of building and building fast

    New York must set some kind of records for building speed and building fast. The innovations for doing this must be numerous. Cost vs speed must be of prime importance when designing Skyscrapers. Each month of construction time must be worth millions in potential for rent and revenues that must be strongly considered when plans are drawn up initially.

  2. #2


    ^ Sure ain't what it used to be when the Empire State Building was built in less than a year. These days it can take the better part of a decade to get something just approved and agreed upon. Look at the World Trade Center and Atlantic Yards fiascos for just two examples.

    Too many people have to agree or at least compromise.

    Too many procedures to go through and reports to issue.

    Too many regulations based on too many questionable theories treated as truth incarnate.

    Too many lawsuits and threats of suits.

    It's like the last years of the Chinese Empire.

  3. #3


    I hear ya.

    This is part of problem in high demand areas. But when all is said and done and the first shovel breaks the ground everything needs to move as fast as possible to get revenues generated earlier... Time is money.

  4. #4
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    NYC - Downtown


    OK -- The ESB went up in 1 year ...

    Now it seems it takes that long just to dig and build the foundation for largest NYC buildings.

    What is the size / depth of the ESB below grade?

  5. #5


    For the World Trade Center They should have taken the drawing out of the archives made any changes needed and put them back up in 12 months. That would have realy shown the world something about strength and resilience. Could be worth some deterent to show damage to infrastructure won't last more than a year.
    Last edited by tonyafc; September 16th, 2006 at 02:13 PM.

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Midtown West, NYC


    Quote Originally Posted by lofter1 View Post
    OK -- The ESB went up in 1 year ...

    Now it seems it takes that long just to dig and build the foundation for largest NYC buildings.

    What is the size / depth of the ESB below grade?
    I'm still astonished when I hear 20-floors of the ESB went up in 20 days. Now it seems much closer to 1 floor every 20 days (I exaggerate, obviously, but barely).

    Heres a nice little summary page, although I realize we all have heard the facts 16 millions times...

    Either way, this puts the foundations at -16.7 meters or 54 feet down. Substantial, especially since the bedrock is almost at the surface at 42nd, so not much below at 34th, thus they are pretty deep in the bedrock too, whereas downtown they have to go down much further just to get to the same hard rock.

  7. #7


    one floor every 20 days is still very impressive. What's the fastest these days with all the steel and joists. With ESB they where still hot riveting steel together. I think they relied more on more cheap labour. Today it would cost too much to do it by brute force like in the old days. We rely more on new technology now to go faster.
    Last edited by tonyafc; September 17th, 2006 at 12:17 AM.

  8. #8
    Crabby airline hostess - stache's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Nairobi Hilton


    Onyx is going up very fast but it looks flimsy, like it would not survive an earthquake.

  9. #9


    My interest in this topic is my involvement with developing a new material that speeds up the wall boarding process like . Material technology advancements can add considerable time savings and labour savings as well.

    From the day of the ESB when brute force put up buildings fast, now builders need to work smarter by cutting out work. The ESB still used things like plaster and paint and other materials that took time to dry which you can't shave much time off doing. Adding more men is not so easy today and there a basic limit to how fast a particular trade can work if you need to wait for the time for things to set and dry.

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