I’ve established throughout this blog that I feel sorrow when buildings and houses disappear. The preservationist in me wants to rehab everything and make it work for today. I know why buildings have to come down (in this case, unreinforced one- and two-story masonry buildings sitting in a part of town where people want to live in towers) and even so, I think we lose something each time we lose a building.
And yet. When I came across the tearing down happening it was an incredible site. Awesome in the traditional sense of the word. I stood and watched for a long time.
It’s a big, solid building. With a sledge hammer, I could maybe do some damage, but not a lot. Yet with this machine, one person can pull it right down as if it were nothing. The power is incredible to behold.
I wasn’t the only onlooker. These guys were settled in, watching the progress.
I think we need to do more deconstruting than demo. But seeing three panes of windows being shattered and pulled to the ground was amazing. I kept thinking how many more people it used to take to pull things apart. This is being done by one guy to rip down, and one to shoot water into the debris.
You can see all around this site what people want in the Pearl. Big buildings. And there will be one here soon. But what if we were the type of people to carefully pull this apart, and send it off for reuse?
We’d miss the dramatic site, but maybe we would be a better people for it? (Notice in the left corner, another building going up.)
And I wonder, if pulling apart a building employed more than two guys and a machine, if workers would be better off?
Here’s the bearing company recently featured. It’s at the other end of the block where the building is coming down. Soon that sight line will change.