CTBUH chairman Timothy Johnson and Skidmore, Owings and Merrill structural engineering partner William Baker, a member of the CTBUH board of trustees, are spotlighted in an Atlantic Cities article exploring the limits of tall building construction.
Mr. Johnson points to hollow-base designs emulating the Eiffel Tower as one possible technique to help buildings go higher. Any tall building would have to be like a “supersized version of the Parisian icon, otherwise the lower floors required to support the gradually narrowing structure would be way too big to even fill up,” he tells author Nate Berg.
"We proved that it is physically and even programmatically possible to build a building a mile-and-a-half tall. If somebody would have said 'Do it two miles,' we probably could have done that, too," Johnson told the magazine. "A lot of it comes down to money. Who’s going to have that kind of capital?"
Mr. Baker agrees that buildings can go taller than the kilometer-tall structures currently in design.
"We could easily do a kilometer. We could easily do a mile," he said. "We could do at least a mile and probably quite a bit more."
Read the full article here.
If nothing else, the Atlantic Cities article illustrates the increasing fascination with megatall buildings, as designers achieve once unthinkable heights. Popular Mechanics recently explored the same topic, based on an interview with CTBUH executive director Antony Wood. That article can be found here.
Atlantic Cities links to this video from the 2011 CTBUH Awards Dinner and Symposium, where leading experts discussed a similar topic.