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Calatrava as Unwitting Wealth Symbolist

Blogger John Massengale offers some further thinking on the Santiago Calatrava tower slated for 80 South Street downtown, taking issue with the point of viewed presented by NYT architecture critic Nicolai Ouroussoff in his Sunday screed. Writes Massengale,

The tower, highly praised by Ouroussoff, is a bad idea from a good engineer, named Santiago Calatrava. Why is it bad? Because if it's built, it will be one of the tallest and visually most important buildings in the city, and it will be solely for 12 families with the ability to pay $30 million each for the townhouses in the sky. It towers over its neighbors, sits in a prominent position where it would be highly visible, and is the ultimate symbol of conspicuous, extravagant consumption. The extreme symbolism of the power of wealth is the worst element of the design, but ignoring the question of why 12 individual families should have such a prominent position on the skyline, the form is still bad.

The whole piece is interesting, and worth the read.
· What's Good For Starchitects Is Good For The World [Veritas & Venustas]

80 South St

80 South Street, Manhattan, NY 10038