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  #5881  
Old Posted Feb 11, 2011, 8:03 PM
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Conference Center

(Copied from CCC Thread. We were talking about conspiracy theories so I wanted to bring this up). Has anyone ever seen the film "Architecture of Doom"? I saw this in a class and couldn't help noticing similarities to the Mormon Conference Center and Nazi Architecture. This will probably get me in trouble, but I've been wanting to bring it up for months. Am I reading too much into this?




     
     
  #5882  
Old Posted Feb 11, 2011, 8:48 PM
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And in other news tonight it was discovered that JB's Big Boy is Paul Bunyin's little brother...
I do happen to think the CC looks a bit like Lenin's tomb. But are we trying to draw deeper connections? Did both architectural parties tap into the same archetypical stream? What would Jung say? The conversation begins to move towards a variety of thresholds. -Paranoia, conspiracy. The aesthetic similarities between the Nazi architecture you have posted and the CC seem even more vague from my point of view. But I suppose most things tiered, austere and possessing strong vertical lines will register as some sort of chromosomal cousin of the CC. At any rate, the conversation, as mentioned, has been had.
In speaking strictly of the CC what failures do exist in the architecture are perhaps the result of an attempted overemphasis on balance and moderation. I've often thought that perfect moderation becomes its own worst enemy when applied zealously. -Perfect moderation is perfectly immoderate. I never know what to think about the obelisk like projections in the context of those decorative, horizontal lines that run around the exterior. The building is austere but also tries to disappear into the modest hill to the North of the property. It is engulfed by "natural" plants on the various tiers of the roof but then stands defiant and emphatically man-made at the entrance to the South. For me, it always registers as a building that has no idea what it wants to be. (Mitt Romney should announce his candidacy from the CC grounds!)

Last edited by VelvetElvis; Feb 11, 2011 at 9:02 PM.
     
     
  #5883  
Old Posted Feb 12, 2011, 11:16 AM
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I agree to an extent. Though, I think the design positives far out way the critiques of some, regarding the south wall's
design austerity. Personally, I do like how the building blends with it's neighboring residential components to the east,
north and west. Most seem to enthusiastically agree with those aspects. Of course, the roof gardens and conference
hall are spectacular. Even the south side has it's great site lines and features. For example, the angle from the southwest
is very attractive, with it's beautiful fountain and interesting terraced setbacks. Also, the mountain brook running down
the full length of the block has always been a favorite feature of mine. However, to some, facing the south side at it's
middle is a little too austere, even with it's cascading waterfall and terraced setbacks. I have often stood and studied it,
and I do think there are different options that could give it a more inviting presence, as you face the southern wall
directly.

All in all, I do think the CC is a huge positive for it's gigantic size and unique location, sitting north of Temple Square.
IMO, most comtemporary structures of that purpose, scattered throughout the world, pale in comparison. Certainly,
the interior of the main, jaw dropping conference/concert hall gives Salt Lake City a major advantage, when talking
numbers of quality seating for the performing arts in it's CDB or city proper. The pageants and routine concerts that
are held there, particularly during the Holiday Season are on the grandest of scale, very non-denominational, and I think
very positive.

Recently, Travel & Leisure Magazine conducted an extensive survey of America's top 50 travel destinations. Salt Lake City
was a clear favorite in an extremely critical category. I think the CC and it's often occuring Tab. Choir, and world
caliber concerts, provided by guest artists to the thousands of Non-LDS convention goers, helps SLC's reputation as a
major performing arts capital greatly. Aside from skiing, and Sundance, the CC certainly contributed to Salt Lake being
ranked as the #1 destination spot for Winter and or Holiday Getaways by tourists, and the traveling, convention going
public.

Salt Lake City is fortunate to have an embarrassment of wealth, when it comes to Halls for the performing arts. From
the gigantic scale of the CC, to the world celebrated accoustics of Abravanel Hall, and the Historic Tabernacle, or the
much anticipated Safdie designed Broadway Theater, just around the corner. Of course, the many ornate Theaters
like Kingsbury, Pioneer, Capital and soon to be resurrected Pantages. Also, everything in between, such as the Assembly
Hall and the Rose Wagner. The CC, along with it's many neighboring Halls, make SLC stand out as a major capital of
the performing arts.

Taken from forum the thread, Found City Photos; "Springtime, Downtown Salt Lake." -Link, http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/showthread.php?t=168604
LDS Conferece Center: One of the aspects that impresses me most about this giant building is
how it interfaces with it's neigborhood. To the south it's facade and plaza are indicative of it's downtown environs
as a monumental and cultural neighbor. As I walked around it a couple of days ago, I was taken back by the now
maturing landscaping covering it's terraced walls to the east and north. This combined with it's rooftop gardens make
for visual feast for the historic downtown neighborhoods, which are immediately adj. to and either surround or climb
abruptly on two of it's sides. Even those living in high-rise towers to the immediate north have beautiful gardens
to look down on instead of a giant, sterile and vapid roof.


Aquistbe
Interior of Assembly Hall, seating over 22,000 people, is the largest of it's kind in the world.
Pictured, is a weekly rehearsal session of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. This venue is often used by the Choir
instead of it's famous, traditional venue, because of it's seating capacity. Ongoing conventions, LDS faithful, and
tourists had often overwhelmed the capacity of the historic tabernacle on Temple Square. The hall is also used
as host for major holiday pageants and as a concert hall for renowned opera soloists or performing artists, etc.,
where seating demand is too high for other downtown venues.


ben4t2

BratoDB

.

Last edited by delts145; Feb 13, 2011 at 10:10 AM.
     
     
  #5884  
Old Posted Feb 12, 2011, 8:07 PM
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I do love the building, it fascinates me. The roof is amazing, and the courtyards and landscaping are incredible. But I am curious why the style of architecture chosen is so closely reminiscent of architecture from era's and cultures that seem to have such a negative connotation i.e. "Communist Russia" "Nazi Germany". I would love to speak with the Architects and find out if this was a conscious or unconscious design choice, and what was the reasoning for the style choice.
     
     
  #5885  
Old Posted Feb 12, 2011, 9:25 PM
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I think it's pretty safe to say those buildings weren't the inspiration for the design. Regardless, it sure would be a shame if a building were redesigned because of a few coincidental similarities to buildings that happened to have been used by people generally viewed in a negative light.

I'm disturbed by the mentality or even the idea that a design can be bad because it was used by a bad person (not that I think you're saying it's "bad," just that you're doubting its legitimacy as a good design, having been commissioned by a church, etc.). The CC doesn't remind me of Third Reich architecture but that doesn't matter. The Nazis commissioned a lot of interesting architecture, and it shouldn't be disregarded just because the people did terrible things. It's not like the source of their inspiration for that style was hatred. To ignore that would be like refusing to buy a Mercedes b/c hitler had one, or a VW because hitler commissioned VW. The value of the design itself shouldn't be determined by where it came from.

Aside from all of that, I think it's very difficult to define a style, especially when buildings are eclectic and the sources of inspiration are unclear. Where did the Nazis get the inspiration for their designs? Where did the Soviets get the inspirations for their designs? I don't look at any of those buildings and see 100% Nazi or 100% Soviet or whatever.. in my opinion most of those buildings bare more resemblance to other buildings of the time period or classical buildings than they do an particular ideology.
     
     
  #5886  
Old Posted Feb 13, 2011, 1:16 AM
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I completely agree with your sentiments on design John Martin. From a design/architectural standpoint all buildings pictured are phenomenal. It's because of the exquisiteness of these designs that I think the essence of these structures is not accidental. If the goal of the Conference Center was to create a structure that portrays a sense of being austere and domineering then mission accomplished. I view this as neither a "bad" or "good" thing. Austere and domineering can be beautiful from a design standpoint. But I do find it ironic that the structure dedicating for gathering of the mormon masses bears striking resemblance to structures of previously mentioned regimes.
     
     
  #5887  
Old Posted Feb 13, 2011, 4:15 AM
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I don't think the LDS faith has chosen to follow one particular form of architecture over another. They have hundreds of prominent buildings all over the world in all forms of different architecture. A lot of their buildings follow the form of Solomon's Temple (of ancient Biblical times), which is what some LDS temples and the Conference Center resemble, which is a very beautiful building. The flat roofs also allow the gardens on top.

Many other buildings (both religious and non-religious) follow the same architectural style all over the world. So I guess I don't see the irony or coincidence at all. What's for sure, I don't think any faith (LDS included) designs their buildings to be similar to what the Nazi's had on purpose. In fact any buildings the Nazi's had were already there before they rose to power or were built using the same concepts people had been using for several centuries. They didn't invent that type of architecture.

Last edited by skyguy414; Feb 13, 2011 at 4:27 AM.
     
     
  #5888  
Old Posted Feb 13, 2011, 6:43 AM
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This thread might creep you out farmerboy, it creeps me out: http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/showthread.php?t=181493

Quote:
Originally Posted by farmerboy View Post
(Copied from CCC Thread. We were talking about conspiracy theories so I wanted to bring this up). Has anyone ever seen the film "Architecture of Doom"? I saw this in a class and couldn't help noticing similarities to the Mormon Conference Center and Nazi Architecture. This will probably get me in trouble, but I've been wanting to bring it up for months. Am I reading too much into this?

The Volkshalle
You are reading too much into this, especially if you are interested in architecture. You should have a grasp by now on what neo-classical architecture is.

During the Renaissance there was a major rebirth of classical style architecture and ever since then many churches and government buildings have invoked classical elements as a statement of permanence and centrality.

The Volkshalle as pictured above resembles the U.S. Capital and the State of Utah's Capital; it also resembles Hadrian's Pantheon in Rome which was Albert Speer's inspiration for the Nazi Capital (the Volkshalle).

Quote:
Just as Augustus's house on the Palatine was connected to the temple of Apollo, so Hitler's palace was to have been connected by a cryptoporticus to the Volkshalle, which filled the entire north side of the forum. This truly enormous building was, according to Albert Speer, inspired by Hadrian's Pantheon, which Hitler visited privately on May 7, 1938.
Quote:
Hitler believed that as centuries passed, his huge domed assembly hall would acquire great holy significance and become a hallowed shrine as important to National Socialism as St. Peters in Rome is to Roman Catholicism.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Volkshalle


Quote:
As the best-preserved example of an Ancient Roman monumental building, the Pantheon has been enormously influential in Western architecture from at least the Renaissance on; starting with Brunelleschi's 42-meter dome of Santa Maria del Fiore in Florence, completed in 1436. Some have gone so far as to describe the Pantheon's form as "perhaps the most influential ... in Western Europe", and it is held as a "symbol of the highest architectural excellence". The style of the Pantheon can be detected in many buildings of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries; numerous city halls, universities, and public libraries echo its portico-and-dome structure.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pantheon,_Rome

Interior of Hadrian's Pantheon:


Interior of the Volkshalle:







The Conference Center to me does resemble a brand of simplified classical architecture (often associated with Art Deco) that was hip during the 20's through the 40's. This kind of simplified classical style was employed in the U.S., Germany, the Soviet Union, etc for some of their government buildings.

A good example would be the Federal Reserve Building also known as the The Marriner S. Eccles Federal Reserve Board Building (named after a Mormon from Utah who was the Chairman of the Federal Reserve under FDR).

Joe Hatfield on flickr


judyphoto on flickr


BratoDB


I love the Conference Center. I like the fact that it blends well into the hill and that it is bold and strong in the front (as has been pointed out by others). I am inspired by this giant structure and what it symbolizes, that is, permanence and a central gathering place. Thus I believe this building to be warranted in its classical style ambitions.

Last edited by s.p.hansen; Feb 13, 2011 at 8:43 AM.
     
     
  #5889  
Old Posted Feb 13, 2011, 10:32 AM
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I think some people's imaginations are running a bit wild...in comparing the styles of architecture..
I think the only similarities are that of a timeless essence.. Much of the architecture of communist and fascist states reflect a timeless appeal, because it was the intention of being there for "a thousand years" history proved that to be wrong, but the architecture remains...
Knowing the fundamental beliefs of the LDS, it would make sense that something of a timeless solid nature would be used...I think it's pure coincidence.. and it really is a beautiful piece of work.
     
     
  #5890  
Old Posted Feb 13, 2011, 10:59 AM
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A fresh renaissance for the Rio Grande Depot?

http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/money/5...town.html.csp#

It was the vehicle for thriving immigrant communities — from Greektown and Japantown to Little Syria — whose industrious workers warehoused their goods a block away.

It ferried soldiers to and from war and a new era of commerce onto downtown Salt Lake City’s western doorstep.

Now, civic leaders hope to re-engage the state’s sleepy Rio Grande Depot — this time to awaken the grand gathering space as a year-round public market...



The artist renderings depict a potential year-round public market that downtown development leaders hope to house in the iconic Rio Grande Depot at 300 S. Rio Grande St. (450 West). The Downtown Alliance is organizing a study to see if the 100-year-old depot could host such a market. Patio space on the west end of Rio Grande would double the space for vendors during warm months.

.
     
     
  #5891  
Old Posted Feb 13, 2011, 11:08 AM
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Good. Freaking. Grief.

Anyone with even a droplet of google/bing know-how would be able to look up what style the architects were ACTUALLY going for with the CC. I'd give you a hint but just telling you is less exasperating. The style is actually pre-Columbian Native American architecture, only with a modern twist. The tower was added so that its purpose as a religious building was visualized.

So there you have it. QUITE the conspiracy(sarcasm).
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  #5892  
Old Posted Feb 13, 2011, 11:28 AM
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^^^
LOL... Then again, those "Pre-Columbians" could have some pretty nasty 'human sacrifice' reputations of their own.

I guess basically every great 'style epic' had it's group of political power mongers. Whether the Egytians, Persians, Romans, Pre-Columbians or Victorians, etc. We probably don't give quite as much attention to the many peaceful inhabitants and visionary architects that were originating the styles that caught on during their respective periods.

As mentioned, pretty much every style is borrowing (often heavily) from previous incarnations.

I like that the CC is taking it's many que's from Ancient American Architecture.

Some interesting trivia regarding the Conference Center...

The 1.4 million square foot (130,000 m2) Conference Center seats 21,200 people in its main auditorium. This includes
the rostrum behind the pulpit facing the audience, which provides seating at general conference for 158 general authorities
and general officers of the church and the 360-voice Mormon Tabernacle Choir. The auditorium is large enough to hold
two Boeing 747s inside. All seats in the audience have an unobstructed view of the pulpit because the balcony is held
up by radial trusses. This construction method allows the balcony to sink 5⁄8 inches (15.8750000000000 mm) under
full capacity. Behind the podium is a 7,667-pipe and 130-rank Schoenstein pipe organ. Underground is a parking garage
that can hold 1400 cars. A modernist, three-story chandelier hangs in a skylight in the interior of the building.

External walls of the Conference Center are clad in precisely-cut granite. A 92-foot (28 m) glass-centered spire denotes
the religious purpose of the building. A 67-foot (20 m) stepped waterfall descends from the spire. The waterfall utilizes
water from a natural spring found underneath the building during construction. City Creek flows in a rough-hewn
riverbed, complementing the Conference Center.

Because the building sits near the base of Salt Lake City's Capitol Hill, the roof is landscaped for attractiveness. About
3 acres (12,000 m²) of grass and hundreds of trees have been planted on the roof. Twenty-one native grasses were
employed to conserve water and showcase local foliage. The landscaping is meant to echo the mountains and meadows
of Utah.


Conference Center Theater

The Conference Center Theater Attached to the main building on the northwest corner is the 850-seat Conference
Center Theater that can be used as a dedicated theater or as an overflow room.


Planning and construction
The design of the Conference Center was accomplished by Portland, Oregon-based Zimmer Gunsul Frasca Partnership,
which was the design architect and Auerbach & Associates of San Francisco, which was responsible for theater design
and architectural lighting. The designs were solicited by LDS Church architect Leland Gray in the early 1990s,
apparently at Gordon B. Hinckley's request.[citation needed] Hinckley was then a counselor in the First Presidency,
but became President of the Church in 1995. The LDS Church originally sought a 26,000-seat building no more than
75 feet (23 m) high in accord with zoning regulations for the LDS Church-owned 10 acre (40,000 m²) block immediately
north of Temple Square. Hinckley publicly announced the project in the April 1996 general conference. The final plans, completed in late 1996,
featured 21,200 seats in the main hall with 905 in the side theater.

Contracting for the building was done by three Salt Lake City firms: Jacobsen, Layton, and Okland construction
companies which submitted a joint bid in order to compete with national firms. The companies jointly operated
under the name "Legacy Constructors" after winning the contract in late 1996.

Last edited by delts145; Feb 13, 2011 at 12:12 PM.
     
     
  #5893  
Old Posted Feb 13, 2011, 12:00 PM
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This pic makes me very excited for the completion of CCC. Main Street is finally becoming one very awesome street once again.

Main Street by DavidWilson1949 - Flickr
     
     
  #5894  
Old Posted Feb 13, 2011, 4:10 PM
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A memorial to be built at Trolley Square.

From KSL.com
By Paul Koepp

"By the time the shooting's fifth anniversary comes around, a memorial will be in place to honor the victims, according to the mall's manager. Mall officials have been working with the victims' families on a memorial concept that would include a fountain and reflecting pool in the plaza at the north end of Trolley Square, next to the new Whole Foods Market."

Rest of the story.
http://www.ksl.com/index.php?nid=148&sid=14357334


I think this is a great idea. I've been hoping for some kind of a memorial for awhile now. I can't believe it's been 4 years. I remember this day like it was yesterday.
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  #5895  
Old Posted Feb 13, 2011, 8:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TANGELD_SLC View Post
Good. Freaking. Grief.

Anyone with even a droplet of google/bing know-how would be able to look up what style the architects were ACTUALLY going for with the CC. I'd give you a hint but just telling you is less exasperating. The style is actually pre-Columbian Native American architecture, only with a modern twist. The tower was added so that its purpose as a religious building was visualized.

So there you have it. QUITE the conspiracy(sarcasm).
That's lovely if the style they were going for was Pre Columbian Architecture with a modern twist, but the final result is anything but Pre Columbian.



Also included a Native American structure...
     
     
  #5896  
Old Posted Feb 13, 2011, 8:48 PM
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I think it's safe to assume they were going for a "modern twist." The twist being that they were building a meeting space and not an ancient pyramid.
     
     
  #5897  
Old Posted Feb 13, 2011, 8:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scottharding View Post
I think it's safe to assume they were going for a "modern twist." The twist being that they were building a meeting space and not an ancient pyramid.
Maybe you could post an example of a "Pre-Columbian" building that resembles the Conference Center because I couldn't find one.
     
     
  #5898  
Old Posted Feb 13, 2011, 10:51 PM
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I love the idea of using the Rio Grand Depot for the permanent year round market. As the article states I think it would do a great job of connecting the neighborhoods and he east and west of the building, through sort of a community focal point. The gigantic patio on the west provides so many opportunities for spring - fall expansion, and I agree that it would only enhance the Saturday market at Pioneer Park.

As for the homeless issue, I don't see that the state or the city will ever force the shelters to move, but as was pointed out in the article the property values will rise and that may give the shelters a reason to move on their own accord. The increased value of the properties will allow them, if they choose, to build a newer more efficient facility in another location.

     
     
  #5899  
Old Posted Feb 14, 2011, 12:34 AM
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main street looks so cool! I need to grab some friends and road trip to SLC, maybe spring break. I've only been to the airport...
     
     
  #5900  
Old Posted Feb 14, 2011, 1:08 AM
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Farmerboy,

No, I think the photos you selected are just what everyone would think Pre-Columbian architecture is. The photos are fine, what I meant by my comment is that while obviously any building is influenced by various styles of the past, I'm pretty certain the architect who designed the Conference Center was only concerned with it being aesthetically appealing and effective in it's use. I doubt there was any intention to draw attention to past dynasties and regimes.
While I'm with you that it's interesting to compare buildings and discuss their architecture, I don't think of the Nazi's when I walk by it.
     
     
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