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Just for perspective:

Proposed Appleplex: 1.4 mil sq ft (?), 12-13k employees

Pentagon: 6.5 mil sq ft (3.7 mil for offices), 26k employees

Empire State Building: 2.8 mil sq ft, 21k (?) employees

Now I'm curious -- what's in the other 2.8 million square feet of the Pentagon?

In part, too many restrooms. They have twice as many as they need as they original built segregated rooms for blacks and whites.


Hallways, conference rooms, shops (there is a small mall in the Pentagon), more hallways, bunkers, monuments / military museums, and a bunch of other general use areas.

It's important to keep in mind that when the Pentagon was built, a computer was a person who did calculations and documents were sent to the secretarial pool to be typed; so the number and roles of its occupants were quite different. The space has been re-purposed over the past 70 years.

It's a very interesting building. You can tell that it was made with a focus on people walking from place to place. I think there are tours open to the public (but require a reservation). I'm pretty sure it's the only tour in the U.S. that features a Marine walking backwards for over a mile. I think there are over 15 miles of hallways in the Pentagon. There are 5 levels with 5 rings each, so you can imagine that's a lot of places to walk.

One of the things that isn't so nice now is the anti-radiation film that got placed on the windows after 9/11. The film is bright yellow, so everything that sunlight touches has kind of a gross pee colored tinge to it.

The Pentegon is not under market pressure to be efficient or turn a profit. They don't even get audited.

> The Pentegon [sic; Pentagon] is not under market pressure to be efficient or turn a profit. They don't even get audited.

The GAO [1] does something close to auditing - although the Pentagon's financial statements aren't in the kind of shape that they even can be audited (something the GAO and DOD are working on). [2]

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Government_Accountability_Offic...

[2] http://www.federaltimes.com/article/20100930/DEPARTMENTS01/9...

Heck, the Omaha Fire Department's books can't be audited either.


and I applaud your use of bracketed numbers, even if they are not blue. http://xkcd.com/906/

One thing I cringed at in Jobs' presentation was framing the 4-story high design as "human scale". The Empire State Building is also human scale.

Human Scale has a different meaning in art and architecture than it does in scientific fields. In architecture, it simply means that the building is designed to fit well with the human senses.

Wikipedia has more info: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_scale

It means that the building doesn't overwhelm you. Like the buildings in Paris for example.

I assume you exclude the buildings at La Défense?

Yes, absolutely.

I find, for example, the Grand Arche uplifting. Tagging an architecture as not "human scale" seems to me an attempt to pit it against human aspirations.

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