25 September 2012

I am glad they built me of iron; let me rust

A view of the Auckland Sky Tower from the Domain, Saturday 22 September. The tower was completed in 1997, and was designed to be taller than Sydney's more famous tower - although it depends how you measure it. The Sydney tower's viewing deck is 50m higher than Auckland's - you can get married there if you like - but the total structure of the Sky Tower is 19m higher to the tip of its antenna spire. Neither is particularly aesthetically pleasing to look at, but each speaks of its own particular decade of birth - the Sydney Tower is vintage late space-age (construction commenced 1970, completed 1981) and the Sky Tower (commenced 1994) is a sleek space needle, its rocketship design referenced by the now hugely dated Force Entertainment Centre on Aotea Square. The Sky Tower, built of reinforced concrete with composites for the upper works, mainly serves as a viewing and wire-jumping platform when it's not acting as a fireworks dispenser, such as last week in honour of Valerie Adams' Olympic gold medal. It even has a younger, slightly taller sibling - the Macau Tower was commissioned from the same architects and was constructed from 1998 to 2001.

See also:
Radio: Interview - Kevin Brass, Council on Tall Buildings & Urban Habitat, 19 May 2012
Web: Council on Tall Buildings & Urban Habitat
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