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Sunday, November 2, 2008

A Moving Skyscraper for N.Y.?

Each of the floors of the Dynamic Tower rotates independently, giving the building different shapes throughout the day. (Dynamic Architecture/ David Fisher)

Would you like to see a building twisting itself into different shapes night and day on the New York skyline? Would you like to live in an apartment with a view that rotates 360 degrees? It may be a little hard at the moment to arrange financing for such tower — or any other new skyscraper in Manhattan — but the architect David Fisher is looking for a place to build it here someday.

He’s already designed such an edifice in Dubai called the Dynamic Tower, billed as the “world’s first building in motion.” Dr. Fisher, an architect based in Florence, he told me that he hopes groundbreaking for the Dubai tower will occur “within a matter of weeks,” and said that the problems in the credit market haven’t affected the project.

The tower is supposed to generate enough electricity to supply the power needs for itself as well as buildings nearby. The electricity will come from horizontal wind turbines tucked away between each of its 80 floors, and from solar photovoltaic cells on the roof each story. As the individual floors move, about 20 percent of each roof is expected to be exposed to the sun at any time of the day.

Dr. Fisher, who’s working on another of these towers for Moscow, was in town this week to discuss plans for New York. Where might it go? “We are currently looking at a few sites,” he told me. “It should be a place from where the view is attractive and also where people can stand and watch the building changing its shape.”

Any suggestions for him? Any predictions on how well those turbines and photovoltaic cells will work? And would you pay a premium to live in a room with a moving view?

Original here

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