Meet Tokyo's Amazing "Shrinking" Building

Meet Tokyo's Amazing "Shrinking" Building

How do you demolish buildings in the dense urban landscape of Tokyo? You shrink them!

Tokyo is one of the most densely populated cities in the world. You've no doubt seen some pictures of impossibly skinny buildings crammed into the crowded cityscape. But, putting these buildings up is the easy part, the hard part is taking them down. When you can reach out your window and touch the building next door, traditional explosives or wrecking ball-based demolitions are out of the question. One Tokyo building firm has come up with a new way of demolishing buildings in tightly packed areas: by shrinking them!

This video from BBC News Asia shows the Akasaka Grand Prince Hotel, a glass skyscraper of the 1980's, as it slowly "shrinks" down to ground level. The demolition is so gradual that locals don't even seem to notice, with one onlooker exclaiming after being told "Really? I didn't realize!" Inside the building, the scene is even more dramatic, as a series of jacks gradually lower the top floors of the building as construction workers de-construct the lower levels.

Hideki Ichihara, whose Taisei corporation designed the technology behind the shrinking Akasaka Hotel, says it is cleaner, safer, and more environmentally friendly than current demolition techniques. He says the technology is particularly useful in densely populated cities that have huge skyscrapers, such as Tokyo, Singapore, and Hong Kong.

Watching the building "shrink" in time-lapsed footage shows the remarkable ingenuity of Japanese engineers, and I'm sure will make many anime fans draw comparisons to Evangelion's famous retractable city of New Tokyo-3.

Source: BBC News Asia

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He says that it's Safer and Cleaner, but I bet it's super expensive. Basically, all they're doing is Deconstructing it Floor by Floor (Though I don't know how the Top goes down with it). I'd be afraid if the roof collapsed on them as they Deconstructed it!

I expected to see portable skyscrapers. I was disappointed :<.

well in a such densely populated area, that is the only way you can safely demolish something, without leveling nearby buildings... though it can't be cheap >.<

Thats actually kind of clever! I can see this being used as an alternative method of destruction for many skyscrapers in large cities where destruction isn't a very safe or valid option.

That's really cool but I can't imagine it being cheap by any stretch of the imagination. That and imploding a building is much faster and probably a whole lot more fun for the guy that gets to press the plunger.

Steven Bogos:
Watching the building "shrink" in time-lapsed footage shows the remarkable ingenuity of Japanese engineers, and I'm sure will make many anime fans draw comparisons to Evangelion's famous retractable city of New Tokyo-3.

Heh, that was my first thought reading the headline.

All that is lacking here is this soundtrack.

Wouldn't it be easier to just ram some jets into it?

Somewhere in this universe, Mr. Trogue is watching this and crying manly tears that explode...

I wonder if there is anything to be said about recycling the materials. I can't watch with sound right now but I would think taking it apart piece by piece would allow for some top notch recycling / reselling.

Mr.Mattress:
He says that it's Safer and Cleaner, but I bet it's super expensive. Basically, all they're doing is Deconstructing it Floor by Floor (Though I don't know how the Top goes down with it). I'd be afraid if the roof collapsed on them as they Deconstructed it!

True the deconstruction cost more, but you also make more money back by selling back the material, doesn't have to spend has much to secure and clean up the area, and on insurance to cover possible damage around the site.

Mr.Mattress:
He says that it's Safer and Cleaner, but I bet it's super expensive. Basically, all they're doing is Deconstructing it Floor by Floor (Though I don't know how the Top goes down with it). I'd be afraid if the roof collapsed on them as they Deconstructed it!

When you're demolishing in a densely populated area, having the building crumble the wrong way after using explosives would be far more costly. You could damage other buildings to the point that they, too, have to be taken down.

its depressing, seeing great things like this. only to look out my own window and the UK is nothing more then a pile of shit that does not do shit anymore, nothing more then churning out retail drones.

AstaresPanda:
its depressing, seeing great things like this. only to look out my own window and the UK is nothing more then a pile of shit that does not do shit anymore, nothing more then churning out retail drones.

Japan has its own fair share of problems. In fact, it is precisely because of these problems that they manage to come up with such crazy solutions. So don't feel so disheartened.

Ignoring everything else, the English voice over for that Japanese spokesperson was one hell of a racist interpretation of a Japanese accent! xD

Steven Bogos:
Watching the building "shrink" in time-lapsed footage shows the remarkable ingenuity of Japanese engineers, and I'm sure will make many anime fans draw comparisons to Evangelion's famous retractable city of New Tokyo-3.

Dang it, ninja'd in the OP.

OT: I now expect to see giant mechs in the near future.

Get on that shit, Japan.

Interesting. While it's true that it's safer and cleaner but I can assume the cost of doing that is it will take longer to take it all down.
I guess that something they had plan out for years seeing how that building was there over ten years ago (the top part that collasping down the lowers floors).

Trust me, im an engineer. And it works. this is amazing. Love the idea of destroying buildings like that.

Japan: where they don't destroy their buildings because that would be too improper; they just societal pressure them so hard that they pass out of existence of their own volition without anybody noticing.

 

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