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7 Wonders of the Concrete World

March 27, 2018 1:57 pm

7 Wonders of the Concrete World Discussed by Spot on Concrete

Concrete is a highly versatile and utilised material used in buildings across the world. Although we often discuss the more common types of buildings and structures that are created by concrete, which world famous structures were built out of concrete?

This article discusses some of the great famous structures around the world that are created with concrete and emphasise the versatility of this material as well as how it can be used to create a stunning building.

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1. The Colosseum – Rome, IT

The Colosseum

Built in 70 AD, the Colosseum is surprisingly made out of travertine, tuff and concrete. Although the Ancient Greeks discovered that lime would bind to create concrete, they were nowhere near as skilled as the Romans, who used a hydraulic-setting cement across numerous structures. Having mastered the art of construction with concrete, many structures were created including the Colosseum. Maybe one of the most famous Roman buildings, the Colosseum or Flavian Amphitheatre was an arena where gladiators fought each other as well as a range of animals, depicted famous battles and entertained thousands. A classic structure that earns a spot on our list.

2. The Pantheon – Rome, IT

The Concrete Pantheon

Another Roman building, the Pantheon is now a church and a popular spot for tourists to meet and eat ice cream. Commissioned to be built around 27 – 14 AD, the building was finally built in around 113-125 AD. The purpose of the building was either to be a temple or a sacrificial area. The temple is built out of concrete with heavier aggregate such as basalt at the bottom and pumice at the top. A magnificent structure that is the epitome of Roman engineering, it’s no wonder that a lot of modern concrete construction and structures still have a thing or two to learn from the Romans.

3. Hayward Gallery – London, UK

Hayward Gallery

Situated within the Southbank Centre along with other major arts venues, the Hayward Gallery is a world renowned art gallery. The interesting design of the building makes it to be one of the most well known London contemporary art galleries and the interesting design is made more bold by  the fact that was built with concrete.

4. Birmingham Central Library – Birmingham, UK

Birmingham Central Library

Birmingham Central Library is another English structure that was built with concrete. Designed by John Madin, this library used to be the largest regional library in Europe. It’s very sad when a wonderful building with a lot of history is demolished however despite attempts by English Heritage to list the building it was scheduled to be demolished in 2015.

5. CN Tower – Toronto, CA

CN Tower

The CN Tower is a 553.3m high concrete communications and observation tower in Toronto and cost CDN $63,000,000. (Just over £34M) With construction starting on February 6th, 1973 huge excavations had to be carried out to create the foundation for this structure. The tower contains a staggering 40,500 .cu m. of concrete which was all mixed on site to maintain consistency. When construction finished in April 2nd, 1975 the structure weighed 118,000t. Offering a range of tourist options such as the glass floor and public observation points make this a highly popular concrete structure.

6. Boston City Hall – Boston, USA

Boston City Hall

Boston City Hall is the seat of city government in the city of Boston in the US. Built in 1968, this building was built to replace the town hall. A competition was carried out to choose the design and the designers decided on the rugged concrete design which was different from other buildings at the time. The concrete really brings out the modern governmental designs that we see with a lot of buildings built in the 60s and 70s. There’s mixed reactions with this one though, with many members of the public calling for it to be demolished. However, architects and designers think it’s one of the best achievements in America.

7. CITIC Plaza – Guangzhou, CN

CITIC Plaza

An 80 storey skyscraper standing at 391m, this skyscraper was completed in 1997 and was the tallest concrete skyscraper in the world until the creation of Trump Tower Chicago. Being right next to the sports centre as well as the busy Guangzhou metro, this skyscraper is an impressive site when visiting this city. As of the writing of this article, it’s the 8th tallest building in China, 11th tallest in Asia and 16th in the world. The antenna design make this landscaper different to other concrete skyscrapers and makes the design of this all the more impressive.

That’s it for our selection of the top 7 wonders of the concrete world. Covering a wide period from Ancient times all the way to the modern age, it’s very interesting to see how we have developed our use of concrete.

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