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  #21  
Old Posted Jul 30, 2010, 12:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HomrQT View Post
That's the official stance by the people who decide the height of buildings, but seriously... an antenna is just as tangible as a spire. They are both physically there, so if one counts then the other should count. This is a debate that has been going on for a long long time. Those pieces on top of the Sears Tower and Empire State Building really do enhance the visuals and let people more easily recognize the buildings, just as a decorative spire does. If you removed them, I'm sure most people would agree the buildings would look odd without them. Oh well, there is an official stance on the subject that at the moment, isn't up for change.
thats how i see it too visually they are just as important as spires.
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  #22  
Old Posted Jul 30, 2010, 1:59 AM
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now the Antennas on the sears were part of the planned structure though, as evidenced by the construction of the bases into the tower itself, once something like that has been planned as an addition to the tower in such an advanced amount of time as to facilitate the construction of two base structures on the roof, then an antenna becomes part of the building's design and as such should be counted
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  #23  
Old Posted Nov 19, 2010, 9:21 AM
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I see nobody actually bothered to go to the CTBUH website and read the rules for themselves...

Link to CTBUH:
http://www.ctbuh.org/HighRiseInfo/Ta...B/Default.aspx

Quote:
How is the height of a tall building measured?
The CTBUH recognizes tall building height in three categories:

1. Height to Architectural Top
Height is measured from the level of the lowest, significant, open-air, pedestrian entrance to the architectural top of the building, including spires, but not including antennae, signage, flag poles or other functional-technical equipment. This measurement is the most widely utilized and is employed to define the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat rankings of the 100 Tallest Buildings in the World.

2. Highest Occupied Floor
Height is measured from the level1 of the lowest, significant2 , open-air3, pedestrian4 entrance to the highest occupied6 floor within the building.

3. Height to Tip:
Height is measured from the level1 of the lowest, significant2, open-air, pedestrian4 entrance to the highest point of the building, irrespective of material or function of the highest element (i.e., including antennae, flagpoles, signage and other functional-technical equipment).
Note the very important words....

but not including antennae, signage, flag poles or other functional-technical equipment

And the antenna on the new World Trade Centre is clearly going to be used as Functional-Technical Equipment. Just read the architects (Skidmore Owings & Merril) own description of the antenna. It sure sounds like an antenna and not a spire. It is even guy-wire stayed and not self supporting:


( http://www.som.com/content.cfm/one_world_trade_center )

So it is clear, The new WTC1v2 is only 1776 feet in the third and final category recognised by the CTBUH.
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  #24  
Old Posted Nov 19, 2010, 12:55 PM
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To the ceiling of the top occupied floor. Spires, towers, domes, antenna, chimneys, mechanical penthouses, etc. should not be counted at all.

Edit to add an example from the diagrams here:



I think it's patently absurd that the building on the left is "taller".

Last edited by RCDC; Nov 19, 2010 at 1:14 PM. Reason: added example
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  #25  
Old Posted Nov 19, 2010, 3:01 PM
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^ Agreed. I thing spires are cheating. Here's an example between the Trump International Hotel and Tower and Scotia Plaza in Toronto:



The Trump takes the title of 2nd tallest in Canada, because of its spire.
I don't think that is right especially seeing as in any picture of the Toronto skyline, Scotia will always look taller.
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  #26  
Old Posted Nov 20, 2010, 12:49 AM
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How tall is Trump Chicago if you remove the spire from it?.
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  #27  
Old Posted Nov 20, 2010, 1:12 AM
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How tall is Trump Chicago if you remove the spire from it?.
1170' feet.
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  #28  
Old Posted Nov 20, 2010, 4:58 AM
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I've generally had the opinion that if spires are counted, then antennae ought to count as well, since they serve an important functional purpose, unlike most spires. That said, I personally am more impressed by the physical size of a building with a high, flat roof, than one that tapers to a point, although spires can certainly be the more aesthetically pleasing. I think that International Commerce Centre and Shanghai WFC are waaaaay more impressive than Taipei 101. But tha's just me.

Perhaps flat-roofed buildings and spired/antenna-topped buildings should just be subcategories of skyscraper, and measured separately, much as supertall radio masts, observation/communication towers, and fully occupiable buildings are subcategories of all man-made structures, and measured separately.
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  #29  
Old Posted Nov 20, 2010, 8:11 AM
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Is there any difference between how they structurally build a building to support a 350' foot broadcast tower or a 408' foot spire?.
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  #30  
Old Posted Nov 20, 2010, 3:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The_Architect View Post
^ Agreed. I thing spires are cheating. Here's an example between the Trump International Hotel and Tower and Scotia Plaza in Toronto:



The Trump takes the title of 2nd tallest in Canada, because of its spire.
I don't think that is right especially seeing as in any picture of the Toronto skyline, Scotia will always look taller.
Yeah, that just doesn't sit right. That Trump building looks punk next to the Scotia tower.

Made an adjustment to the comparison I posted, and can spin it off as "architecturally significant". Now, the building on the right is omg "taller"!





To use an analogy, height should be a measurement of the cake, not the frosting, decorations, and candles.
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  #31  
Old Posted Nov 20, 2010, 6:23 PM
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What about the top floor of a building vs the roof or parapet wall. Iv'e been on the top floor of many tall buildings then taken the stairs from there to the roof then had anywhere from a 5' to 20' parapet in front of me.
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  #32  
Old Posted Nov 20, 2010, 6:30 PM
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My opinion the answer is very clear: Taller is taller! However that is a mast or seomewhat. Pinnacle height should always count.
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  #33  
Old Posted Nov 20, 2010, 11:04 PM
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LOL, they do not design buildings with spires to "cheat." Buildings are designed the way they are designed not for the purpose of being taller. Spires have always been an architectural feature to, I guess, finish off a building. The only example of a spire placed on the building to be taller was the Chrysler Building vs. 40 Wall St. and that was for the race for the world's tallest building.
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  #34  
Old Posted Nov 20, 2010, 11:43 PM
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They definitely do add spires to gain height. Is that always the case? No, but there are clear examples when it happens. Intent doesnt matter anyway, when 1/4 of a building's height is useless, why should we count it?

What it comes down to is this, no one counts "structures" like the CN tower because it non-functional. A spire is not a functional part of a building, no different from a tower. I don't care how tall you can poke up a pole, I want to know how high you can build a room in the sky. When you put the buildings next to each other, its obvious which is taller, regardless of spires.

There is only one real way to measure a building: HOF.
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  #35  
Old Posted Nov 21, 2010, 1:09 AM
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Removing the top of the Chrysler Building would leave a hole that would require major work to roof it over. Not so the Times Building.
And the antenna (at least the top 100 feet or so) could be removed from the CN Tower without major harm as well, not that it's considered a skyscraper anyway.
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  #36  
Old Posted Nov 21, 2010, 2:40 AM
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I think we're all arguing different things here.

When I ask someone "how tall is that"? I want to know how many feet there are between the ground and the end of human construction. The tippy toppest point in the sky. How high did humanity go when building this thing here? So, to me, EVERYTHING counts. Spires? Yep. Antennas? Yep. Flagpoles? Yep.

That, to me, is a completely different question than:

Which building is more impressive or imposing? Which building is more aesthetically pleasing? Which building fits better in its context? Or the ever present:

Which building could beat up the other?

I think they're all good questions to ask but the 'how tall is it?" question is pretty specific and the answer is pretty obvious to me.
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  #37  
Old Posted Nov 21, 2010, 6:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alliance View Post
What it comes down to is this, no one counts "structures" like the CN tower because it non-functional.
Non-functional?? How exactly is it non-functional?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jodelli View Post
Removing the top of the Chrysler Building would leave a hole that would require major work to roof it over. Not so the Times Building.
And the antenna (at least the top 100 feet or so) could be removed from the CN Tower without major harm as well, not that it's considered a skyscraper anyway.
Removing the antenna from the CN Tower would be major harm.. It's main purpose is a giant antenna for christ's sake! It would completely remove the purpose of the entire thing!
The touristy observation deck was added as an afterthought.. it was originally going to be just a giant concrete antenna..
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  #38  
Old Posted Nov 21, 2010, 8:11 AM
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When it comes to spires / antennas, I would only count the spires. Antennas are not architecturally part of a building. In certain towers like the Empire State Building and Sears Tower, their antennas were not originally included during construction and have also been lengthened over the years. Thus, adding more height to their towers. Spires on the other hand are a permanent architectural element of a tower that are not modified in height. My exception with antennas not being included would be for towers like the CN Tower and others whose main purpose is broadcasting signals.

I will agree though that a building's roof is its true height.
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  #39  
Old Posted Nov 21, 2010, 11:28 AM
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Originally Posted by NYC4Life View Post
In certain towers like the Empire State Building and Sears Tower, their antennas were not originally included during construction and have also been lengthened over the years. Thus, adding more height to their towers.
I gotta say that's a lousy argument. It boils down to "since it can change, it doesn't count." In reality, when you add to something, you make it bigger. 1+1=2, not 1+1=1. Taken to its logical extension, the vertical expansion of the Blue Cross Blue Shield building in Chicago should not count because they added floors.

Buildings are the only man-made object where people split hairs over of asinine details like spire versus antenna. Aircraft are measured from the pitot tube (a small tube roughly half an inch wide and at most a foot long) to the tail antennas. Why? because if you pretend it's not there, you might build an airport that gets one of those little sticks of metal snapped off in a hard turn. By the same token, aviation authorities catalog buildings by pinnacle, again because there's practical considerations that don't play well with pretending something isn't there when it will slice off a wing as good as any other piece of metal. Going philosophical, it cheapens the engineering that goes into antennas, and the effort it takes to put them up (which because they have to be replaced every so often means in the long run it takes MORE effort). However, mainly, it's schizophrenic. You're saying something that clearly exists doesn't.
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  #40  
Old Posted Nov 21, 2010, 7:26 PM
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Skyvector.com has aviation charts. They show obstructions in AGL,MSL. Above ground level and above mean sea level. They count the total height in AGL.
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