Structural Transformation of our Cities and Sub/Exurbs is entirely possible and eminently practical.
The physical ‘form’ of our ‘built environment’ is based on the large structural ‘buildings’ … residential houses, and their arrangements; and the roads along which the buildings are located. Transformation, then, primarily involves changing the ‘form’ of those individual buildings; their ‘layout’ arrangements and orientation in combination(s); and, the ‘routing’ of the roads.
‘Structural Moving’ is the key to the re-building of structural ‘form’.
Structural Moving, as an industry, is well established with highly capable and professional technologists, and a long distinguished history of successful projects. In fact, they correctly refer to themselves as the ‘original reuse/recyclers’, by saving otherwise structurally sound building from demolition.
To truly understand the extent of the possibilities, and the real potential of Urban Transformation requires an appreciation of ‘Structural Moving’ as a primary technical capability.
In following blog posts, I’ll describe the ’state-of-the-art’ of modern Structural Moving, and provide weblinks.
For now, a look to some historical accomplishments will provide a glimpse of our ancestors’ knowledge and skills for a basis of comparison and knowledge to highlight our very real modern practical capabilities. Only with such a perspective can we truly appreciate the potential that exists for Urban Transformation.
We have many historical cases to learn from. A few obvious examples include:
These serve to illustrate an important point regarding the lifting and moving of blocks of very large physical size and mass. This is particularly instructive due to the equipment and tools available to the people in their respective time(s).
With Stonehenge, 30 ’sarsen’ stones … the standing stones, measured approximately 4m X 3m X 1m thick and weighed around 25 tons!
And, to strain the imagination further, even more impressive are the 10 huge sarsen stones, of the so-called trilithons – each of two uprights joined by a top lintel. These uprights measured 4+ m above ground (and almost 2m below ground), and weighed up to 50 tons!!
These stones were likely transported at least 20-30 km away … this, over 4000 years ago – without the use of the wheel!
It’s freakin’ incredible.
Especially since the stones were positioned with precise accuracy, linked with ‘tongue & groove’ or ‘mortise & tenon’ joinery of the top lintels.
Another wonderful example of human technical capability is Herod’s Jewish Temple of Jerusalem.
Constructed around 20000 years ago, while most of the foundation blocks were about .8m X 1m X 4m and weighing approximately 28 tons, the largest was an astonishing 3m X 4m X 15m, and approx. 600 tons!! Six hundred tons!!
Yet, these were quarried to precise size, transported (human and draught animal power) and installed with precision.
These accomplishments (and many others) by our ancestors serve as insightful and inspiring precedents. These were awesome projects even be today’s standards.
That people were capable of such large-scale and intricate structural projects so long ago, establishes the fact that we’re capable of the same, and more, today.
In terms of Structural Moving, enlightened by the historical examples of Stonehenge and Herod’s Temple, the lifting/moving of ‘buildings’ – primarily residential houses is entirely practical. Especially considering the modern knowledge and technologies we have available to us now.
‘Structural Moving’ – the lifting/moving of whole buildings – is the basis of Urban Transformation.
By optimizing the knowledge and skills of current ‘Structural Moving’ professionals, we can develop Urban Transformation as a new industry, and fundamentally trans-form our cities/suburbs.