Ruth Slavid talks architecture

Talking tall

Posted in Uncategorized by ruthslavid on January 10, 2010

It was interesting to be asked to talk on BBC World News about the Burj Dubai, although at extraordinarily short notice – just 25 minutes to do a bit of research, and find and put on some telly-presentable clothes!

I think one forgets how little the general public understands about how buildings are constructed. I talked about the fact that the building needs to be able to move, to cope with winds and earthquakes.

The fireworks were extraordinary, and technically it is an amazing achievement by SOM, partly because it is so very much taller than its nearest rival, Taipei 101. But definitely a product of ‘big dick’ syndrome, and it is now unlikely to be surpassed for a long time.

It’s also an insight to see a professional presenter at work, in this case Lys Doucet, listening to instructions and weighing things up, while the makeup lady touches up her lipstick. And all on a set that looks fairly glam on broadcast, but is actually in the middle of a chaotic open-plan office.

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