The now half-constructed 37-story Walkie Talkie glass skyscraper in London was given a special concave shape by its architect, Rafael Vinoly. Read here at the Daily Mail.
However, just after mid day whenever the sun is shining, the building’s unique shape focuses sunlight like a ray gun to a small area onto the street and adjacent buildings below. The concentrated sunlight scorches parked cars, blisters paintwork, cracks tiles, singes fabric, and is reported to even have ignited fires.
Clearly architect Vinoly goofed and failed to take into account the impacts of the building’s shape and orientation. But it’s not like he couldn’t have know about such problems. The Mail writes that another building he designed in Las Vegas, the Vdara Hotel, built in 2010, had the very same problems.
The Mail reports that Vinoly was unavailable for comment.
Spiegel: Architect blames climate change
But yesterday, Germany’s online Spiegel here reports that architect Vinoly has commented and is partly blaming climate change for the building’s intense reflected heat.
Spiegel writes and quotes Vinoly:
The developers did not take the sun enough into account. But: When he came to London years ago, it wasn’t as sunny. Now there are lots of sunny days. ‘So, shouldn’t we also make climate change responsible, or not?'”
Right. What was the architect thinking? He knew it was a mistake in Las Vegas. Did he think that London would never see sunny days in the summertime? You only need one sunny day and the problem is there.
Vinoly’s sorrowful attempt to dodge responsibility is typical today. Nobody is ever responsible for big screw-ups or gross incompetence anymore. Now it’s always climate change. Mankind is collectively responsible for the foul-ups of sloppy and incompetent individuals.
Granted Vinoly doesn’t blame it all on climate, which any competent architect learns to take into account from day one. According to Spiegel he concedes:
We’ve made lots of mistakes with the building. We will address the problems.”
Hooray. Vinoly appears to have learned that the sun indeed does shine in London after all.