Costume Contest for CTBUH 10th World Congress

The Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH) 10th World Congress will take place from October 28 to November 2 in Chicago and the organization is planning the 50th Anniversary Congress Dinner, which will be held on October 30.

A photo from the 1931 Beaux-Arts Ball held in New York City. From left to right: A. Stewart Walker as the Fuller Building; Leonard Schultze as Waldorf-Astoria; Ely Jacques Kahn as the Squibb Building; William Van Alen as the Chrysler Building; Ralph Walker as Wall Street tower; D.E. Ward as Metropolitan Tower; and Joseph H. Freedlander as the Museum of the City of New York. © American Institute of Architects (cc by-sa)

According to CTBUH, the evening will be a modern interpretation of the 1931 Beaux-Arts Ball in New York, where titans from the building industry came dressed as the buildings they had created.”

The evening will have a full cocktail hour and a multi-course menu. To add to the fun of the evening, there will also be a VIP photo backdrop and some props to help capture the perfect picture.

Costumes can be an article of clothing, a full-blown outfit or anything in between. CTBUH will award a US$1,000 prize for best costume on the night of the dinner.

In order to win, participants must register for the competition ahead of time.

Five Decades of Innovation

When it opened in 1969, 875 North Michigan Avenue (then the John Hancock Center) in Chicago represented cutting-edge construction technology, becoming the first high-rise building to employ a braced-tube structural system; photo courtesy of CTBUH.

In recognition of its founding in 1969, the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH) has spent 2019 looking at the past five decades of skyscraper construction and development, as well as imagining what the next five decades might bring — hence, its 50th anniversary theme, “50 Forward | 50 Back.” The celebration will come to a head at the end of this month with the CTBUH 10th World Congress in Chicago. As in previous events, the congress will feature workshops, presentations, panel discussions and a symposium. The special focus, however, will be “The 50 Most Influential Tall Buildings of the Last 50 Years,” a global roster of landmark structures that, each in its own way, “represented a significant change in thinking or technique” from what came before. The list includes 1969’s 875 North Michigan Avenue (the former John Hancock Center) in Chicago; the Lotte World Tower in Seoul (2017) and the Burj Khalifa (2010), Dubai’s awe-inspiring megatall. Whether it was construction technique, environmental friendliness or outside-the-box architectural design, each building on the list had a notable role in advancing the art and science of the skyscraper, one of humankind’s most iconic creations.

CTBUH is expecting more than 1,500 delegates from at least 45 countries to attend the congress, which opens on October 28. An online registration portal will be open until October 18, so there’s still time to sign up. For more information or to register, visit the CTBUH website’s 2019 program page.

Where’s the Cow Hide Hiding?

A leather-walled elevator in the Bentley Hotel in Manhattan’s Upper East Side

I came across the above elevator interior When in NYC for the International Association of Elevator Consultants New York Region 26th Annual Fundraiser for the Elevator Escalator Safety Foundation (look for my story on it in the November issue). You don’t see many like it — walled in (probably synthetic) leather and rivets — and I wondered why. The material gave the cab sophistication despite its age and openness despite its color.

Sadly, you don’t see a lot of leather elevator interiors, even as Google Images search results. One, however, is the below pic from the Luxury in Design blog. This one shows a quilted design that highlights the versatility of the material. So, why isn’t it used much in elevators? It obviously wouldn’t be cheap, but there are plenty of applications for which money’s not much of an object.

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A cab in the Soho Beach House in Miami Beach