Tuesday, January 05, 2010

If you build it big and brash, people will come - at least until someone blows it up

To be sure, some have questioned the utility of such a towering project. At least three foreign workers died during the construction and at a time of increasing concerns over global terror, such a building could well pose an inviting target.

But for a city-state that from its very beginning has taken pleasure in proving its doubters wrong, the Burj is evidence that if you build it big and brash enough the people will come, from near and far.

SHOOT: How the mighty fall. What is the that saying - the bigger they are? It is this idea, this arrogant idea, this hubris, that stands at the core of the collapse facing our world right now. Economic collapse, energy supply collapse leading to further systemic breakdowns. Here is the symbol of what's wrong - all that glitters tends to be about greed.
clipped from www.nytimes.com
Dubai pulled out all the stops Monday to celebrate the opening of the world’s tallest building: a rocket-shaped edifice that soars 828 meters, or 2,717 feet, with views that can reach 100-kilometers, or 60-miles.
“Dubai not only has the world's tallest building, but has also made what looks like the most expensive naming rights deal in history,” said Jim Krane, author of City of Gold: Dubai and the Dream of Capitalism. “Renaming the Burj Dubai after Sheikh Khalifa of Abu Dhabi — if not an explicit quid pro quo — is a down-payment on Dubai’s gratitude for its neighbor’s $10 billion bailout last month.”

More than 12,000 people will occupy its 6 million square feet, zooming up and down in the 54 elevators that can hit speeds of 65 kilometers, or 40 miles, an hour. It was designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill in Chicago.

At a time when a number of Dubai’s newly built office towers stand empty, it is 90 percent sold, according to the building’s developer Emaar Properties.

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