Saturday, February 17, 2007

Parliament hill

The trains were not bolloxed today, so I did go up parliament hill. On Hampstead Heath everyone dresses like extras from Lovejoy (lets not forget that Lovejoy was the lone ruffian amongst the well-to-do country antique folk).Y'know those new rugged all-terrain prams... well, I saw two parents carrying theirs over some fairly tame mud. I walked past Juliet Stevenson. It's a fairly prissy area of London, this we can gather.

Here's a couple of illuminating episodes highlighting that Hampstead and Hackney are different:

  • A dog fetched a ball, and obligingly dropped it when its owner said "drop"
  • A youth was walking his dog. The dog started to wonder off and he called after it "Yo!" He was resolutely ignored.
Not much to report skyscraper-wise. Bit too hazy for photography. I could, I suppose, draw some dodgy parallels between kite-flying and skyscraper building... man's insatiable need to reach up to the gods in the heavens. But that would be laughable.

Someone on the skyscraper forums once commented on how narrow Broadgate Tower is, and how it may be uneconomical to build as half the floor-space will be taken up by lifts. Leaving aside for a moment the fact that the number of lifts is proportional to the number of people, which is in turn proportional to the floorspace (so less floorspace means fewer lifts), and that I'm sure the investors did consider this issue... But the tower is actually very wide, only the difference between depth and width is about 3:1. Don't have a photo to demonstrate, but in one direction it is significantly wider than the Gherkin and Tower 42. So I think it will have office space galore, without the curved walls problem of the Gherkin.
For an interior designer, the Gherkin's floor plates are euphemistically known as a "challenge."
There must be some mathematical theories determining the optimal number of lifts. I imagine it increases at a rate greater than linearly as the number of floors increases. There is actually a well-known paradox called the elevator paradox which is quite interesting.

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