File under science fictional employment opportunities: the Burj Dubai (that ludicrously huge tower in Dubai which we’ve mentioned here before) is finally open for business (if there’s any business left, natch), which means they need to keep the thing clean for tourists and visiting dignitaries – quite a challenge when you’re talking about a building that clocks in at over 800m in height. [image courtesy Wikipedia]
There are 23,000 glass panels on that thing, most of which will be cleaned by BMUs (robot Building Maintenance Units), but some of the uppermost sections just can’t be reached without using old-fashioned meatworkers with ropes and harnesses… and to protect them from the harsh sun up there, the workers wear a get-up much like a spacesuit, complete with a backpack full of electrolytic “sports beverage” to keep them hydrated.
Certainly not a job for anyone with phobias of heights. Or claustrophobia, for that matter… [via @Ballardian]
Thought I’d try my hand at io9-style headlines – just for fun, you understand. 🙂
But with valid reason, too – the perforated biomimic skyscraper-arcology design below has been named Dystopian Farm by its creator, Eric E Vergne.
Designed for the Hudson Yard area of Manhattan, Eric Vergne’s Dystopian Farm aims to provide New York with a sustainable food source while creating a dynamic social space that integrates producers with consumers. Based upon the “material logic of plant mechanics”, the biomorphic skyscraper is modeled after the plant cells of ferns and provides space for farms, residential areas, and markets. These organic structures will harness systems such as airoponic watering, nutrient technology and controlled lighting and CO2 levels to meet the food demands of future populations.
Vergne’s design is one of many entries in this year’s Evolo Skyscraper Competition, so we can probably safely assume that it’ll never actually be built – which will either disappoint you or make you heave a sigh of relief.
But speculative architecture eventually feeds back into the buildings we end up living in, and the need for sustainable urban food sources is pretty unavoidable. I can think of worse things to clutter a skyline with… but Vergne might want to think about giving it a slightly less grim name should it come to erection time.