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  #21  
Old Posted Jun 25, 2017, 8:02 PM
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Originally Posted by ChargerCarl View Post
Who "designs" skylines?
Developers/Architects/city planners.
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  #22  
Old Posted Jun 25, 2017, 8:52 PM
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LA will get there soon. There are a ton of 50-60 story building proposals or u/c.
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  #23  
Old Posted Jun 25, 2017, 9:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChargerCarl View Post
Who "designs" skylines?
The SF Planning Dept. for one.

Quote:
POLICY 1.3
Recognize that buildings, when seen together, produce a total effect that characterizes the city and its districts.

Buildings, which collectively contribute to the characteristic pattern of the city, are the greatest variable because they are most easily altered by man. Therefore, the relationships of building forms to one another and to other elements of the city pattern should be moderated so that the effects will be complementary and harmonious.

The general pattern of buildings should emphasize the topographic form of the city and the importance of centers of activity. It should also help to define street areas and other public open spaces. Individual buildings and other structures should stand out prominently in the city pattern only in exceptional circumstances, where they signify the presence of important community facilities and occupy visual focal points that benefit from buildings and structures of such design . . . .

The fitting in of new development is, in a broad sense, a matter of scale. It requires a careful assessment of each building site in terms of the size and texture of its surroundings, and a very conscious effort to achieve balance and compatibility in the design of the new building. Good scale depends upon a height that is consistent with the total pattern of the land and of the skyline, a bulk that is not overwhelming, and an overall appearance that is complementary to the building forms and other elements of the city. Scale is relative, therefore, since the height, bulk and appearance of past development differ among the districts of the city.

People in San Francisco are accustomed to a skyline and streetscape of buildings that harmonize in color, shape and details. Much effort has been made in the past to relate each new building to its neighbors at both upper and lower levels, and to avoid jarring contrasts that would upset the city pattern. Special care has been accorded the edges of distinct districts, where transitions in scale are especially important . . . .

Tall buildings are a necessary and expressive form for much of the city's office, apartment, hotel and institutional development. These buildings, as soaring towers in a white city, connote the power and prosperity of man's modern achievements. They make economical use of land, offer fine views to their occupants, and can permit efficient deployment of public services . . . .

Exceptional height can have either positive or negative effects upon the city pattern and the nearby environment. A building that is well designed in itself will help to reinforce the city's form if it is well placed, but the same building at the wrong location can be utterly disruptive.

If properly placed, tall buildings can enhance the topographic form and existing skyline of the city. They can orient the traveler by helping to clarify his route and identify his destination. Building height can define districts and centers of activity. These advantages can be achieved without blocking or reduction of views from private properties, public areas or major roadways, if a proper plan for building height is followed. Such a plan must weigh all the advantages and disadvantages of height at each location in the city, and must take into account appropriate established patterns of building height and scale, seeking for the most part to follow and reinforce those patterns. Such a plan must also be applied with recognition of the functional and economic needs for space in major centers for offices, high density apartments, hotels and institutions providing public services . . . .
For much more on the subject (see especially "Fundamental Principles of major New Development"): http://generalplan.sfplanning.org/I5_Urban_Design.htm

For further evidence of how the city planners consider the skyline, there's this from 2008 when the TransBay terminal and district was under consideration:

Quote:
A signature tower has long been imagined for the Transbay Terminal. In 2006, (former Planning Director Dean) Macris and other officials floated the idea of a transit tower higher than the 853-foot Transamerica building, San Francisco's tallest structure.
Among their arguments: the supposed aesthetic benefits of accenting a skyline where towers built since 1985 have formed a sort of plateau in the air.
"The flattening-out of the skyline undermines the topography of the city" with its natural hills, said John Rahaim, who replaced Macris as city planning director in January. As for making the skyline's new "peak" be part of a transit center, "there is something to be said for this important public project to be the focal point," he said . . . .
http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/T...ne-3285569.php

How right they were and how much improvement there has been! Ultimately, the planners specifically advocated a a 3-humped skyline (as seen from the Bay) with the central, tallest hump being the Salesforce Tower and the cluster of very tall buildings around it (181 Fremont, Oceanwide Center, at least one other on Howard St), the left hump being the Rincon Hill cluster and the right hump being the traditional Financial District includng the TransAmerica and Bank of America towers.

Last edited by Pedestrian; Jun 25, 2017 at 9:32 PM.
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  #24  
Old Posted Jun 25, 2017, 9:43 PM
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Oh God, thats horrible.
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  #25  
Old Posted Jun 25, 2017, 11:46 PM
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I had Dubai and Vancouver in mind when I said "styles or eras of skyscrapers represented": too many of one specific style and you've got to wonder how it will age. Art Deco towers have generally aged magnificently, but I'm not sold on all these new slim glass residential towers built on top of podiums. How are those going to look in 50 years? Hey, for all I know they'll be the new Art Decos, but I have a nagging suspicion this won't be the case.
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  #26  
Old Posted Jun 26, 2017, 12:32 AM
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1950 New York would be my #1

Pomo (example: downtown Manhattan jpm tower, one pierrepont in Brooklyn, at&t building ) has aged horribly.
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  #27  
Old Posted Jun 26, 2017, 12:56 AM
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Oh yeah, 1950's NYC was incredible.


https://www.pinterest.com/pin/386676317981674492/

The only problem is that the skyscrapers were all covered in black soot at the time. Chrysler pretty much had a black crown.
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  #28  
Old Posted Jun 26, 2017, 5:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shawn View Post
'm not sold on all these new slim glass residential towers built on top of podiums. How are those going to look in 50 years? Hey, for all I know they'll be the new Art Decos, but I have a nagging suspicion this won't be the case.
The good ones I think will be fine stylistically. I less sanguine about them structurally (will the facades have leaks etc).

Here's an example of a building I hate for many of the same reasons I hated the original WTC towers. The engineering is impressive but it looks like it was built with some kind of childrens' construction toy. I want to say it may have been fun to prove you could do it, but you shouldn't have:


https://www.flickr.com/photos/jag9889/27715276295
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  #29  
Old Posted Jun 26, 2017, 7:24 AM
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Originally Posted by BrandonJXN View Post
I may be biased (especially considering it's my hometown) but I feel that Los Angeles gets a lot of flack for not having the largest skyline relative to it's size. However, the skyline it does have is one of the more aesthetically pleasing skylines on the planet. The US Bank Tower being the tallest building* placed directly in the middle of the skyline, as well as the mountains in the background, create something special.



*Fully aware of Wilshire Grand btw. Points go to that building for not throwing the balance off on the skyline. Quantity doesn't really make a skyline as much as the quality of the buildings. Dubai has skyscrapers here and yonder but they are not really attractive. Not even slightly aside from a scant few. Have you seen Jumeriah Beach Residences? Hot garbage. Tropical commie blocks.

L.A. could use a few hundred or 1000 of these Dubai towers to solve the housing shortage crisis. Such "cookie cutter" towers (presumably) would mean more affordable housing for the proletariat.

Last edited by CaliNative; Jun 26, 2017 at 7:40 AM.
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  #30  
Old Posted Jun 26, 2017, 7:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Pedestrian View Post
San Francisco DOES allow taller buildings on its hills although Nob and Russian Hills have been pretty well built out for decades (You will note there are several prominent residential towers on both hills from the 1950s/60s). The new development on Rincon Hill, however, is the premier example of this policy and building on Cathedral Hill is another example.

This is principle #2 of the city's Urban Design Plan:
Yes, Russian & Nob Hills do have some 20-30 story buildings (Mark Hopkins, Fairmont etc.). Rincon "Hill" isn't much of a hill, is it? Then there is that enormous T.V. tower on top of the high hill near Twin Peaks. Or is it Mt. Davidson?

Last edited by CaliNative; Jun 26, 2017 at 7:50 AM.
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  #31  
Old Posted Jun 26, 2017, 7:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pedestrian View Post
The good ones I think will be fine stylistically. I less sanguine about them structurally (will the facades have leaks etc).

Here's an example of a building I hate for many of the same reasons I hated the original WTC towers. The engineering is impressive but it looks like it was built with some kind of childrens' construction toy. I want to say it may have been fun to prove you could do it, but you shouldn't have:


https://www.flickr.com/photos/jag9889/27715276295
Proof that simplicity doesn't necessarily equal beauty or architectural importance.
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  #32  
Old Posted Jun 26, 2017, 12:49 PM
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My top four are easily recalled:
HK
New York
Shanghai
Chicago

then things drop off a bit. Depends on my mood, time of day, angle shown, etc. So just a jumble of random thoughts.
Tokyo is just fantastic. But it isn't a skyline; it is a massive blob of many skylines. Still, one of the very best.
Burj Khalifa is quite nice, but much the rest of the skyline is a linear, tacky mess.
Toronto is moving up fast. Probably a top-ten contender.
LA is much nicer than many give it credit for. But not a top ten.
Shenzhen, Guangzhou, San Francisco....
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  #33  
Old Posted Jun 26, 2017, 1:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CaliNative View Post
L.A. could use a few hundred or 1000 of these Dubai towers to solve the housing shortage crisis. Such "cookie cutter" towers (presumably) would mean more affordable housing for the proletariat.
No. Not even a little bit does LA need any of these Dubai buildings. Not a one. It's bad enough we have Palmer's Tuscans. Chicago had all sorts of these same styled commie blocks and then they destroyed them all (for various reasons).
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  #34  
Old Posted Jun 26, 2017, 3:05 PM
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Commie towers are terrible, BUT in theory, with government assisted funding, could really solve the housing crisis. Lets just pretend the government cared, and put tons of resources into funding (construction, land purchases). While ugly, the units would help. I'm sure the private sector would gladly build such units too, pending zoning modifications which give them the room to build 1000's of them.

But with all the units, comes transit woes. A constant battle. The housing crisis in many city's can be solved, but the will is not there nor is the appetite to stomach such change (especially aesthetically).

If we had more government investment in our cities, they would be much better off. If we had the same level of funding as lets say the military (U.S.), we'd have a lot more toys to play with in our cities.
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