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The 212-story skyscraper in Melbourne, Australia (twitter.com/liamosaur)
437 points by noyesno on Aug 20, 2020 | hide | past | favorite | 114 comments

Is it morbid of me to wonder what happens if you fly a plane into such a building in Flight Simulator? It just… sticks out so much that crashing into it seems the obvious thing to try.

(Judging by https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GhrGEdO88kE where someone eventually succeeds in landing on this building, it looks like if you fail the screen just goes black at the point of impact, so no interesting physics simulation.)

Crashing into stuff is great fun and probably the first impulse of anyone booting up a flight simulation program (especially kids) -- so much so that flight simulation software was the target of a moral panic in 2001 after the September 11 attacks were conducted by crashing real jets into buildings. Some people began to think of flight sims as "terrorist training tools" and call for them to be banned. That's probably why the screen simply went blank.

Previous versions would display a "cracked windshield" over the cockpit view and the word "CRASH". Flight Simulator 5.0 would switch to an external view and show your aircraft shattering into pieces. MFS2020 can simulate an aircraft that was partially damaged after colliding with an obstacle, but a catastrophic crash will just fade to black and pop up a message. Lame.

I built a game in the Flash days called Stunt Pilot, which happened to sit at #1 on HN the day of its release way back in 2007. Though that's way less of an achievement than it would be today!

You played a stunt plane that would fly through hoops and around obstacles. The game featured a lite physics destruction model where if you made a mistake it would blow to pieces and tear down whatever you ran in to. Not as part of the gameplay, but in order to make your inevitable mistakes more entertaining. It featured user editable replays and a level editor, so people could post and rate content. I guess you know where this is going...

Probably 50% of the levels and replays turned out to be something along the lines of "9/11 simulator". I culled it manually as best I could and eventually turned it off. I found it pretty funny how much of a cesspit user generated content turned out to be (in the same way that you'd laugh at 4chan), though I do wish I spent the many weeks rolling it out on something else.


Not #1 but definitely at the top of HN on that day :) https://news.ycombinator.com/front?day=2007-11-28

There are multiple posts in the #1 spot on any given day.

> flight simulation software was the target of a moral panic in 2001 after the September 11 attacks were conducted by crashing real jets into buildings. Some people began to think of flight sims as "terrorist training tools" and call for them to be banned.

I've been wondering if this is why there was so little flight simulation software out there in the last ~15 years or so. I remember visiting a retail store with software in the 2010's and wondering why there is a simulator for everything except an airplane.

There have been 2 outstanding flight simulators on the market for the past ~20 years which more-or-less dominate the industry. X-Plane and MSFS are both excellent and both reasonably affordable. I suspect the lack of flight sims in retail has more to do with the fact that flight simulators are hard to create. When there is established competition with a great rep and decent pricing, it's nearly impossible to break into a market profitably.

If you want air combat, DCS is the top choice. Because they model very complex state-of-the-art jet fighters, it is also very complex.

All flight sims are very complex, it's sort of the nature of the beast. I think that's the fundamental difference between a simulator and a game. A simulator needs to model reality, a game can take big shortcuts to ease gameplay.

Indeed. The dearth in flight sims predated 9/11, and was likely because MFS and X-Plane filled everyone's needs adequately, with FlightGear available as an open source option.

>> MFS2020 can simulate an aircraft that was partially damaged after colliding with an obstacle

Scenarios where aircraft strike fixed objects and remain airborne are virtually unheard of. Bird strikes are one thing, but touching a cessna wing to any building is a realworld game over. Touch any pole, any power line, any bridge, anything larger than a goose and you aren't going home.

Ya, but that wasn't a fixed object but another aircraft. Aircraft, even fighters, are soft and light compared to buildings and rocks.

> Scenarios where aircraft strike fixed objects and remain airborne are virtually unheard of

A cable car cables are not properly fixed, still quite an impact:


I think the primary use case is to enable simulation of emergency crash landings and landings with the gear up.

It's also not that easy to do- you at least need a few hours playing a proper sim before you can reliably hit a building. Before 2006 (IIRC) there were was not much else to do but just fly around before they started doing tutorials and challenges and such. As a kid I would just do loops around airports until I learned to land semi reliably, fly into buildings, fly under bridges, try to fly and find recognizable things.

Flying under the BK bridge, and into the sears and twin towers was probably the biggest "activity" I did on flight sims.

> MFS2020 can simulate an aircraft that was partially damaged after colliding with an obstacle, but a catastrophic crash will just fade to black... Lame.

It’s a simulator, not a video game. What would be more realistic than this?

NTSB investigation and paperwork

That's because a few of the terrorists actually used flight sim games to "train" prior to the hijackings.

It wasn't completely unfounded hysteria.

True, but at the time, anyone who wanted to fly a plane (for recreation, commercially, etc.) would be likely to use a flight sim as an inexpensive starting point for training or practice, and that's not even counting the people who might never step into a cockpit, but enjoy flight sims regardless. Terrorism was a tiny fraction of a tiny fraction of the use cases for flight simulators.

And when this happened, the dust had just settled on a big nontroversy over the role of first-person shooters in real-life shootings -- arguably, a stronger case can be built for restrictions on those (for example, not allowing them to be sold to small children) than for restrictions on civilian flight sims.

Flight sims are a lot more useful than FPSes for training.

My first flight hour was an ILS approach in a King Air. Supervised, for sure, but the owner was rather shocked I could navigate and follow glide slope without any actual time in the air.

The same is not true for a FPS.

Here's one of the news stories about it, mentioning a British government report into the intelligence they had around September 11 and usage of MS Flight Simulator. (Apologies for a Daily Mail link, it's the only one I could find with some quick Googling, but it was commonly reported at the time.)


Almost all pilots use flight simulator "Games" during training.

And when the US military drops a bomb on a wedding party in Afghanistan, it is a certainty that those pilots/operators trained on a simulation at some point.

The Flight Unlimited series in the '90s had a great crash system where you could watch your plane get ripped apart and the pieces bounce along the terrain until you restarted. It wasn't entirely realistic, but it was pretty impressive for a game from 1997.

I was really disappointed when I tried other flight sims and found out they just stopped instead of doing the same thing.

You can see the Flight Unlimited version of plane crashes at 3 minutes in this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kk8MBD9sUi4

Market opportunity for an indie developer to create a flight simulator with real collision physics?

I'm not sure how complex flight simulators are to develop, I assume that getting real world data for plane characteristics modelling and such are part of the problem but as a project for software engineering I don't know if an indie developer could realistically create such a game.

The best damage model in a flight simulator so far is [IL-2 Sturmovik](https://hypertexthero.com/il2-flight-joy/).

The next game by the developer of Kerbal Space Program Felipe Falanghe is called Balsa Model Flight Simulator and it is already a lot of fun (I am currently playing a closed beta and it should be out soon):

First ground takeoff in a plane I built: https://www.twitch.tv/videos/715155254

Midair collision during dogfight: https://www.twitch.tv/videos/715177161

Action figures in the cockpit: https://www.twitch.tv/videos/715210985

I am enjoying [MSFS 2020](https://www.twitch.tv/videos/715725728) but the lack of a damage model and the “Empty Screen of Death” is really disappointing. I hope they add a damage model eventually. Seeing things go wrong without dying or hurting anyone is one of the joys of video games.

Also keep an eye out for [Dead Stick](https://store.steampowered.com/app/771800/Deadstick__Bush_Fl...).

In the mean time there's always Kerbal Space Program.

Try A-10 Cuba if you want to see this done right, in terms of fun.

Can knock bits of your wings off, grind your gears up etc

You can have two settings, one where things fade to black and the other where you bounce off with the collision doing no damage.

"ladies and gentlemen if you look out the window to the right you will see...the blinding hubris of mankind as it pierces the heavens to mock god himself."

In some versions, the leadership of the country you're flying in uses the crash to justify two long-term wars, one of which lasts a minimum of 19 years, costing trillions of dollars and countless lives and ultimately failing to achieve anything other than even more instability in the middle east.

Glad I don't live in this simulation.

If you can read my comment... I have news for you.

Also more instability within the country.

In other words, by creating more long lasting instability in the Middle Easy they achieved their goal, hypothetically speaking in the simulation of course.

> ultimately failing to achieve anything other than even more instability in the middle east

Hate to break it to you but this was the exact desired outcome.

>> ultimately failing to achieve anything other than even more instability in the middle east

> Hate to break it to you but this was the exact desired outcome.

That's not actually true. It doesn't seem like it was deeply cynical and nefarious like that; it was more of an overly-simplistic moral crusade:


> In “Plan of Attack,” Bob Woodward described Bush as being beset by doubt about the case for war, and suggested that Tenet’s affirmation had been “very important.” Draper disagrees. The issue wasn’t the evidence. It was the spin: “Tenet’s words were ‘important’ only because they helped remove any doubt as to whether the C.I.A. could mount a solid case.” Bush’s thinking was as clear as it was simplistic. Saddam was a monster. It would be a bad idea to leave him in power. According to Draper, Bush’s “increasingly bellicose rhetoric reflected a wartime president who was no longer tethered to anything other than his own convictions.”

> In his 2005 Inaugural Address, Bush tried to turn neoconservative ideology into official doctrine: “It is the policy of the United States to seek and support the growth of democratic movements and institutions in every nation and culture, with the ultimate goal of ending tyranny in our world.” It wasn’t until the shellacking that the Republicans endured in the 2006 midterm elections that Bush began to abandon his fantasies about spreading peace, love and understanding across the Middle East. He fired Rumsfeld and shunted Cheney to the side.

Bush the Lesser made no decisions. He did what his handlers told him to do. Of course the same people who did in Mosaddegh and have done dozens of other coups (and much worse besides) wanted a less stable region. Less stable regions lead to increased spending on armaments and "black" budgets. As we're reminded by the recently-completed "Blowback" podcast [0], blowback is a feature not a bug. The machine works the same way every time, not due to a mistake or the bad luck of having bad people in control but because it is a machine that works the same way every time.

[0] https://blowback.show/

You are entirely off on this. (Iranian born, with picture of Mossadeqh on my wall when I was a kid.)

Mossadeqh was a destabilizing actor, as a matter of fact. Also, this recent yet-again re-telling (adjusting) the story of the fabled '53 coup to "reinstall" the actual monarch of Iran is interesting. Many of us for years complained "why is the role of UK minimized and America vilified for this coup?". This was specially puzzling since it was the CIA and NYTimes that were screaming 'mea culpa'. Very strange.

And we now have the adjusted matter that says, "oh yea, the Brits were 'involed'". It's funny. Even now you don't have the facts, but no excuse for lack of knowledge.

You need to review Iran's political situation starting with invasion and occupation of neutral Iran by US, UK, USSR, up to the "reinstalling" of the Shah of Iran.

Pay special attention to the "stable" period featuring assassination of prime ministers by "Muslim Brotherhood" (UK "orientalist" spook outfit); attempts at 'liberating' North Western Iran by USSR; attempts on the life of the reigning (not governing) monarch; etc.

The counter-coup of '53 was a reaction by elements in Iranian society against other elements in Iranian society. The Western imperial interests of UK and 'cold war' interests of hegemon USA simply aligned with Nationalist Iranians who happened to be Royalists, or vehemently anti-Communist. That is all.

The 'National Front' of Iran needs to get over this emotional hangup over '53 and start telling the full truth. Their churlish attitude was certainly instrumental in letting the regressive Islamists hijack Iran and the "revolution" in '79. You would think they've finally learned the lesson but alas.

Sure, Iranians in Iran were responsible for events in Iran. Just as Indonesians in Indonesia were responsible for events in Indonesia. And so on, for forty other nations. 20th-century history rhymes. There's always another fool ready to answer CIA's call. Luis Fernando Camacho is a recent example. Nationalism is overrated, but it's better than CIA-toadyism.

Maybe Mossadeqh wasn't perfect? He was elected by Parliament and appointed by the Shah. He was removed from office via royal decree dictated to the Shah by CIA reptile Donald Wilber. In the aftermath his supporters were executed by General Zahedi. This is all public knowledge now. What is your beef? Should the British get more credit? OK, let's give them credit for asking Eisenhower to do the thing, after Truman had refused them.

Assuming you're referring to Razmara or Mansur, it's interesting to learn that Fada'iyan-e Islam were run by UK "orientalist" spooks. I'm sure you could teach us lots of other interesting things, if you cared to do so.

An implied point was that the current strategy of destabilization of the underbelly of Asia [1] is distinct from the post-WW2 "Atlantic Charter" [2].

US had no interest in a destablized Iran in 1953. Far from it, it was clearly understood that the highly organized Tudeh Party (literally "masses" and the Moscow sanctioned and directed (literally) Communist Party of Iran) would eat and chew out Mossadegh without much effort. Iran's military, for example, was also highly penetrated with Tudeh officers.

So the issue is not Dr. Mossadegh's merits as a politician, an Iranian nationalist, or even simply a human being. The issue is the strange distortion of this "history" that very clearly not only deligitimizes the Pahlavi dynasty, but also has provided the 'background story' for the song and dance of Iran vs. USA "because America destroyed our chance at democracy" nonsense. USA was quite happy to see the Shah of Iran leave in 1979. Have no doubt about that.

And we know why: Because the Trilateral Commission's plan for "arc of instability" needed to get going, and you will note that the exit stage of Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi of Iran was the opening act of the next 40 years of mayham in the so-called Middle East, including by some accounts nearly a million dead Iranians in the Iran-Iraq war.

[1]: https://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/russian-federation/1...

The key words you want to research on are: Zbigniew Brzezinski, and Arc of Instability. On a funny aside note, these items used to be so much easier to dig up 20 years ago.

[2]: https://teachingamericanhistory.org/library/document/atlanti...

My apologies for the tardy response; I wanted to give this due effort.

I don't know why anyone would have taken the authors of the "Atlantic Charter" at their word. If any Iranians did, they were the only "non-aligned" people who made that mistake. That's not to say there was no evolution in colonial technique, however. USA policy in Philippines, Latin America, etc. had been very focused on natural resources and agriculture. 1953 wasn't much later, and there had been several distracting events in the meantime, so we naturally deferred to British oil greed. That isn't the case anymore. Have you seen the price of oil? Even if it rises a lot (it won't anytime soon) we can just frack all we need here at home. The bombs we drop now aren't for oil or bananas or anything else we can't get from China: we drop bombs so we can buy more bombs. A burning world is just more opportunity to enrich the military-industrial-political-media complex. That's why we're taught to fear Muslims.

I concede, you're right that back then we didn't want to burn down all of little brother's fancy oil rigs. However, American decision-makers in 1953 were psychopathically confident. They didn't fear destabilization; just look at what they were doing at the time in Korea. Look also at what they were doing at Enewetak Atoll! Eventually Iran became a case study for the value of destabilization, but Southeast Asia had made the case much earlier. That work would soon start: Allen Lawrence Pope was shot down in 1958, after we had been fanning the flames in Sumatra and Sulawesi for a year.

If Brzezinski really was talking about this stuff in the mid-70s, he was a couple of decades behind the times. Anyway, he hardly benefited. The disastrous "Operation Eagle Claw" was mentioned in the first paragraph of his obituary.

Your concern for the "legitimacy of the Pahlavi dynasty" seems to hint that you're less concerned for the preferences of Iranians. The elder Pahlavi wasn't a bad sort, and if we're to believe the stories he didn't actually even want to become Shah. His son, though? Who would cry for him? This two-ruler rump dynasty was a fitting end to the whole shabby Shah tradition. Historically, the Shahs who weren't bloodthirsty and insane despots like Nader Shah were patsies for foreign tyranny. Both the Pahlavis were, and at least the previous four Qajars. Iran is a great nation. It has had great leaders such as the Arsacids. Eventually it will have a worthy government again. I don't know that Americans can have the same hope...

Oh sorry, I didn't realize Bush was under oath in his inaugural address.

What is the motivation?

Unimaginable amounts of money going to military contractors. Countries taking out World Bank loans. Oil companies, obviously. Privatizing public services to the benefit of American companies.

Natural resources, endless war is good for defense contractors, and it's a way to have proxy wars with other large states (Russia / China).

These incentives hold almost everywhere and not just the Middle East. That's why destabilization in Central/South America and Africa is also compelling and has been ongoing for ages.

But, the Middle East has particularly compelling geographic, social, and technological circumstances for a candidate location for endless war.

Specifically: 1. It's far from the US and closer to competition ("best defense is a strong offense") 2. Until recently the ethnic and religious make up of Middle Eastern peoples was hyper localized, making them outgroups who were easy to demonize 3. Also until recently it was not likely for media to make its way out of the Middle East where people could see just how terrible war is and how similar the people there are to people everywhere else

Much easier and cheaper ways to achieve that. Are you aware how much technology the state has at its disposal?

Spending money is the point. Don't imagine that the reptiles care about the region one way or the other. All the bullshit about peace and modernity and hating Islam is pure marketing. That's why their arguments for war in one nation can completely contradict their arguments for war in a different nation. (In Syria they pretended to care about "good governance". In Libya, not so much...) Like every other region of the globe, the Middle East is just an opportunity to reach further into the pockets of American taxpayers.

Not cheaper for powerful profiteering and racketeering enterprises. Arms, oil, etc.

State capture by corporate interests is inevitable.

Looking at this video and how hard it is to aim for a skyscraper, you'd think the chances of Amateur pilots hitting the Twin Towers so precisely - twice - would be close to zero!

Not sure if you're being sarcastic but it's surely a lot easier to keep a large passenger plane on a steady course.

This person seemed to be trying to land, though, and the Twin Towers (being an actual skyscraper) are fairly wide.

Kinda looks like 432 Park Avenue!


Good to see OSM being actively used though.. I really love that project. And the maps, at least here locally, are of amazing quality. When I'm hiking, on Google and Apple maps I'm walking in a grey square. OSM has the tiniest mountain trails. Love it.

And mistakes do happen, hope this one would get corrected though :) And it's not the only one of its kind! Many are seen all around the world.

According to that twitter feed, it has been already corrected in OSM.

The ridiculousness of this brought unexpected joy. It reminded me of the The Centrifuge Brain Project.


It's like something The Culture might produce on a GSV that's gone Eccentric and the crew just goes along with it.

Thanks for sharing this, amazing short film.

I love the concept of massive buildings / structures in areas without such but I don’t think the city people would enjoy such buildings in actuality.

The massive circular mine in Russia comes to mind (no pun intended).

Next to the medieval town of Rottweil in southwestern Germany, there's the 246m tall thyssenkrupp tower.


It was built a few years ago as test facility for elevators, but has also become wow a touristic attraction as it offers a publicly accessible platform.

That's actually a rather nice looking building. I suspect if something was built here in the States for a similar purpose, not only would it not have such an attractive exterior, but it almost certainly wouldn't have public access. Most of our office skyscrapers aren't even open to the public as it is.

Similar, slightly older and only about half height thing in Bremen: https://www.zarm.uni-bremen.de/en/drop-tower/general-informa...

Apparently a lot of people were pissed about the Eiffel Tower when it was being constructed. Now you couldn't pry it from their cold, dead hands.

(People were also pissed about the twinkling lights installed for the anniversary, but they made them permanent, too)

The more recent-era equivalent is the Tour Montparnasse, which many Parisians believe ruins the skyline of their beloved city, but I personally find it rather beautiful in the same sort of eldritch way as the flight simulator building:


Hm. From afar one could mistake it for a cousin of the monolith out of Odyssey 2001 :-)

Are you thinking of something like this https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ostankino_Tower ?

Reminiscent of the fernsehturm in berlin. [0]

It's kind of nice. You can usually keep track of where you are in Berlin, by triangulating around the tower, which is visible from a great distance and in one of the "centers" of Berlin [1].

If you're ever lost, you can just walk towards it, and eventually you'll end up in the one of metro's nexus at Alexanderplatz.

[0]: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fernsehturm_Berlin#/media/File...

[1]: https://external-content.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=https%3A%2F%2F...

Ahhh the great toothpick of O'Connell street :)

But really it would have been nice to have something more Irish. I always felt it's out of place there.

Kind of reminds me of Bank of America Plaza from certain angles: https://www.rancord.org/cms/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Bank-...

I am reminded of the Turning Torso in Malmo, which is 190m and surrounded by nothing anywhere near as tall (the second tallest building in the city, almost 100m shorter, is pretty far away).

I would say people don't mind, but the owner of the building has been trying to sell for years and nobody has bought it. It looks pretty though.

Aside: One of the best FSX posters out there is AirForceProud95. He's what got me into flight sims, at least for a little while. A good compilation here:


Did Microsoft credit Open Street Map?

It looks like OSM credits Microsoft for a lot of that data.


That data has not been imported into OSM. That's just a wiki page detailing the external data.

Those datasets appear to be US-only, which wouldn't apply to Melbourne?

As an aside, I was curious how on a few of the trailers they feature out of all the places in the world - Warrnambool (Victoria).

Given, it's a picturesque place (having grown up and gone to school there), but maybe not as interesting as say a low level flyby of the 12 Apostles about 10min flight time back along the coast.

Was there a competition to get your town in the trailer, or one of the developers grew up there and slipped it in?

Oh that's too funny.

On a side note: I signed up for the discounted $1 trial month of Xbox Game Pass just to try this game out. The download and installation process was ridiculously slow and causing my CPU to ramp up to 80-100° even while undervolting it. On a brand new i7 9750. Not sure what that was all about. I put the process on pause... I am looking forward to giving it a try, though. Anyone else have any difficulties?

I'd check your CPUs heatsink mounting and make sure the thermal paste is applied correctly. Installing and downloading shouldn't cause your CPU to ramp up to 100C.

Hm. There's no other context in which it ramps up that high, no matter what I've thrown at it. And unfortunately, it's a new laptop so I'm hesitant to crack it open for want of invalidating the warranty just yet.

So you never used Microsoft AutoUpdate on a Mac, right? Because that‘s the only thing this tool does apparrently. Full 100% CPU while downloading, no matter how slow your network is...

Weirdly common I mean look at Dropbox, 100% processor while syncing. No idea why this is acceptable from such large companies.

There's an insane amount of outright bugs, jankiness, frameskipping, random framerate slowdowns, etc etc going on.

I recommend reading this thread: https://www.reddit.com/r/MicrosoftFlightSim/comments/ic3o90/... (read both by best and new)

And for the non-suckers who didn't buy the game yet: wait a few months. The shipped before actually making it work. I almost feel suckered because I paid $5 or so to re-activate my Xbox-PC-gamepass-or-whatever-they-call-it account so I could try it out.

I also had a weird issue where minimizing the Flight Simulator window during the download/installation procedure bumped GPU usage to 55 % on a GTX 1070 until unminimizing the window again. GPU usage was hovering around 5-10% when the window was not minimized.

Oh weird. I'll have to check on that. I was at 0-5% GPU usage maximized on an RTX2060 but CPU was just cranked. I tried minimizing it hoping it was just some startup process that caused an initial CPU burst, but when it didn't calm down and was causing everything else to come to a halt that I shut it down for the time being.

That's really interesting, I'm currently installing it.. minimized and my GPU fans immediately spun up with utilization at 100%!

I got that too. Generalized - this is a consistent theme across the game. All sorts of random buggy behavior. Stick a USB input device into the PC while the game is running - it may well crash.

I recognize these kinds of bugs. They come from the developers not having a bottom-up understanding of the platforms they are working on. Instead they are working from the easiest possible code path and then try their best to squash all of the bugs, without really understanding the fundamentals.

I was able to crash the game once by turning on my Steam controller while the game was running. Couldn’t reproduce it though.

Just found my 3-month-old post where I posted a cautious note against the hype:


The article says it's impossibly narrow but is it really? It's only about 2.5 times taller than 432 Park Avenue in New York, but it also looks a little bit wider.

A building like this would probably sway a bit more than usual at the top due to being so tall and having no other wind breakers around it, but I imagine it could be possible to build and live in safely.

It's taller (assuming just 10 feet per floor) than the Burg Khalifa. Super tall structures require a far larger base to support against winds, as you go up winds get faster and their leverage against the base increases.

10ft per floor would make it 2120ft or 646m tall. The Burj Khalifa is 829m tall.

I was looking at the top floor height by accident, the last 200 feet or so are a tower. It's a common cheat in the fight to be the world's tallest building, build pretty tall then slap a bunch of floors or a tower on top that people can't get into.


Now I'm wondering if in engineering terms such a tall, thin building could be constructed.

No one's gone quite that big, but this one's similarly tall and skinny, and ~100 stories. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/432_Park_Avenue

There are a couple of new buildings on Elizabeth Street in the Melbourne CBD a few miles from the virtual monolith that are reminiscent of this. Not quite as tall (around 80 stories was my street level count). Looking forward to a post covid world and visiting Melbourne again, it's a fabulous city.

The 57th St Tower (still being built I think) is slightly taller and even skinnier - and just as ugly. Really I think it detracts from the beauty of Central Park.

Beauty being in the eye of the beholder, 432 Park Avenue's one of my favourite pieces of contemporary architecture.


It's so wonderfully unfussy - I particularly like the 'service floors' which are emptier to aid air-flow, reducing the swaying.

Admittedly, the skyline might be a bit dull if every building was so bluntly utilitarian, but as an exception, I find it refreshing.

It's not clear if those floors are empty for structural reasons; if they were habitable, the building would have to be shorter, which is obviously not ideal from a revenue perspective.

The skyscrapers are what makes Central Park unique. There are millions of acres of parkland around the world. There is only one place where a park is surrounded by the most iconic skyline in the world. That contrast between the urban and the "natural" (there's little to no true wilderness in Central Park) is what makes it beautiful to me.

There's a new cluster of super-tall buildings going up around Central Park, though, that are changing the situation a bit. Housing for handfuls of billionaires shading the public park used by millions.


These supertalls are adding significant shadows to Central Park: https://www.westsiderag.com/2018/11/11/billionaire-shadows-n...

I'm not sure I'd say "significant".

>This means that the lasting shadow coverage will be relatively faint. On the winter solstice, the longest edge of the passing shadows cast from these buildings is estimated to last one hour.


>one hour

They're at the southern end of Central Park, which means that one hour is lunch hour.

According to Wikipedia, "When completed, [111 West 57th Street] will be one of the tallest buildings in the United States, as well as the thinnest skyscraper in the world with a width-to-height ratio of about 1:23 or 1:24".


I was in NYC in February and while both were quite impressive, I don't aesthetically like them either. But to me the favorites are the likes of the Woolworth, Flatiron, Chrysler... so I guess I'm a lost cause to contemporary architecture.

B1M on YouTube partially covered it (incomplete project):


I hope they keep the building or make it an option. This is the sort of creativity that seems to only happen by accident. It makes the game better for some people, they enjoy the fun backstory and challenge of navigating around and landing on it.

Let me remind all citizens of the dangers of magical thinking.

I really think this should now be built.

There have been ideas for a similar tower for decades.


There is something much funnier happening in Melbourne right now :D

LOL! Always remember to sanitise your data: https://twitter.com/liamosaur/status/1296305262144364544

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