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7 Biggest Architectural Disasters Of All Times

Architecture, in its most intrinsic form, is a  combination of art, design, architecture, safety, economics and aesthetics. Most of the times, the design turns out to be great, but some of the designs make the most catastrophic construction projects in history. We’ve listed seven such disastrous architectural designs for you!

1. W.E.B. Du Bois Library, University of Massachusetts

The University of Massachusetts has three different libraries on its campus; the most famous of the three is W.E.B Du Bois Library. It was once the tallest one in the US at 26 stories. But soon after the completion of the construction work, the outer brickwork began to chip off. It was said that the reason behind this was that the architect had not accounted the weight of books while designing the library. Hence, around 60,000 books had to be removed from the library

See the pictures of this library here:

2. Ryugyong Hotel, North Korea

The construction of this hotel which was to house about 3000 bedrooms started in 1987 but stopped abruptly in 1992. Rumours say that faulty engineering and the shortage of money has led to this abrupt stoppage of the work which is incomplete till this day.

3. The Dubai Aquarium

This giant aquarium housing 400 sharks and stingrays along with 33,000 other fish is one of the most famous tourist attraction in Dubai. In February 2010, a leak was developed in it due to faulty engineering design. Hence, an army of workers mopped the floor while the six divers fixed the leak. Thankfully, it was recuperated, and no fish was harmed in the whole process.

4. John Hancock Tower, Boston

A 60 story building with the minimalistic design was appreciated when it was opened in 1976, but pretty soon, things went wrong! The window panes of the houses in the building started falling out due to unexpected and excessive thermal stresses. Hence, about 10,000 windows in the skyscraper had to be replaced, but unfortunately, that was not the only trouble the engineers faced. While every other skyscraper was designed to sway with high winds but in this one, the movement was so bad that the occupants of top floors reported motion sickness. So, William LeMessurier, A Cambridge engineer soon took upon himself to solve this problem.

5. Walt Disney Concert Hall, Los Angeles

Though the design of the Walt Disney Concert Hall was extremely stunning,  the amount of sunlight that the graceful curves of the building reflect is a literal hazard that can potentially blind the drivers and heat up the neighboring buildings by up to 9 degrees Celsius. Even the pavements around the building were heated up to 60 degrees Celsius.

6. Walkie Talkie Centre, London

The concave design of the Walkie Talkie Centre was really an achievement until the problems that it caused were acknowledged. The design reflected too much heat in the surrounding streets. Some people reported that the design of the centre was responsible for damaging parked cars and the sunlight glare from the curve is extremely uncomfortable.

7. Tacoma Narrows Bridge, Washington

It is possibly the most disastrous architecture fail ever! It was opened in 1940, to be the third-longest suspension bridge in the world. But unfortunately, the bridge lasted only four months before collapsing under the stress of 64 kilometres an hour winds on November 7, 1940. It was reported that the major reason for the failure was the use of cheap girders for reducing the costs. The bridge swayed even during the construction and was thus nicknamed “Galloping Gertie.”