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Still beautiful in Ohio. Rained day before yesterday; yesterday was sunny but chilly. Today, it's sunny ashless skies and 50 degrees.


one more time, really know nothing of modern building methods. if the existing soils won't support the load, something will be (over)engineered to accomplish it.

having worked on some of the taller buildings in Portland, OR...on the banks of the Willamette River...

first is the excavation, then a series of pilings are driven, in groups, down into bedrock. then these groups of pilings, (which fall under critical load bearing points in the structure, and are driven into bedrock) are joined together by a pilecap, which is a huge steel-reinforced concrete footing...and I mean huge, like 16' x 16' x 5' deep, with 15-20 pilings driven into bedrock under each one. the buildings are supported by rock, not by laying on soil.


I read some articles about the water situation out west. They estimate that they have less than 10 years supply of ground water left. For some areas, it is even shorter.

The ground water is being sucked up so rapidly that it cannot be replaced by snowmelt or rain. I believe one city in Arizona or New Mexico has banned all lawns and other forms of grass in the city. The residents are upset over this.

Wait till they have no water to drink. Will they tell their children that they used to water their lawns all day?


"one more time, really know nothing of modern building methods. "

Jeez, notgonna... don't you know by now that Elaine knows EVERYTHING about EVERYTHING? The last time anyone told her something she didn't already know, she was six years old.

Elaine Meinel Supkis

Ever explore the 'bedrock' one is latching onto? Ahem.

Where do aquifers reside? Clay? Soft soil? How about IN THE ROCKS. Like bed rock rocks.

And when one pumps out all the oil or water, the empty spaces compress and then the land drops! DUH!

On top of that, Oregon is part of the world where the earth ESPECIALLY THE BEDROCK is rather active. Like, earthquake active. Build something big and then have the rock go rock and roll and one has unpleasant times.

Elaine Meinel Supkis

Many earthquakes occur at the 10km level. I know of no pilings that go down 10 km. Also, I have been around pile drivers a long time. They are pounded into the ground until they can't be pounded.

Take my dear mountain for example. Repeated glaciers and other events since the mountain range was formed about 400 million years ago has meant there is very little topsoil. Lots of rocks. The first 20 feet is a mix of soil and glacial till.

Then one hits the slate and the 'bedrock.' Driving pilings to it is laughably easy. Drilling through this is much much harder. When we drilled our well to 425 feet, it took several days using a modern drill, not the pile driving drills. I wonder how many skyscrapers go down more than my well.


One thing of interest to me about Shanghai is the presumption of building giant skyscrapers on soft soil. Many cities are doing this blindly and stupidly.

no one builds skyscrapers on soil. no one.

This is due entirely to Manhattan's influence.

oh really? got a source for that?

When I went to Europe in the sixties, no city had 100 story skyscrapers. Manhattan hosts such giants not just because it is, nearly uniquely, an island city, it is totally unique because it is solid rock. To build in Manhattan means to blast into the hard rock.

to build tall buildings anywhere means coming up with a way to anchor the foundation into bedrock.

It used to annoy the hell out of me, the racket this work causes.

pile driving machines are quite the noisy buggers too...and they make the earth shake for blocks around a construction site. part of a site engineeer's job is to monitor surrounding structures for settling and other movement.

All the skyscrapers in Manhattan have understories buried deep in the rock that go down sometimes over 100'.

all the skyscrapers in Portland have pile systems buried deep in the earth, sometimes over 100' below the surface, through layers upon layers of the Willamette River's ancient flood plains, until they reach bedrock.

p.s. some pile systems are holes drilled into bedrock, then filled with steel reinforced concrete.

p.p.s. geologists have gathered a surprising amount of information regarding the different flood layers, what caused the particular flood, and how far down to expect bedrock...which, around here, tends to be basalt from ancient flows, thousands of feet thick. no wonder the piles stop.

p.p.p.s oh...sometimes they don't...if a pile is driven at the slightest angle, when it hits bedrock, it will curl out and become ineffective...which is one of the reasons geologists/soils engineers have to be present to record and monitor pile driving. you stop driving when he says stop driving.

Elaine Meinel Supkis

HAHAHA. A hundred feet is 'deep'????

As I said, my well is four times that deep! My humble home sits on bedrock. And it is much more geologically stable than anything in the West by definition.

Manhattan: home of the skyscrapers. Pray tell me how many years the Empire State Building was the tallest in the world? How about fifty years?

And that set the standard! Chicago has a handful of sky scrapers but not a forest. No city has the density of New York City's many skyscrapers. None. And NYC is the trendsetter for the entire earth. I don't need to put up a ton of links proving this obvious fact.

Sometimes something is just so obvious even a really dense person can figure it out I hope.

The USA has better laws about building substructures but they aren't perfect nor can they get the same effect as NYC has with Manhattan.

For example, Long Island is a glacial till and is not nearly so well-formed as Manhattan! So building hundreds of skyscrapers would be foolish.

90% of the world's skyscrapers have been built in the last 40 years. The geological process of dismantling our structures has barely begun. Just like the WTC was a foolish building and I said this from day one, years ago! I hated those towers and begged my friends and family to not work there!---it is foolish on many levels, buidling mega-structures. For obvious reasons. Watch a film of the WTC collapsing. Gah.


lol. i quoted your own words back to you and you argued with them, for the sole purpose of continuing to argue with me.

so, is what J Smith said up there true? why do you always have to be right? why is it that you can't accept new information once your mind is made up about something? the very definition of close-mindedness...

Manhattan is the home of skyscrapers because New York is (has been?) the financial capital of the world, it's a small space that houses millions of people, the only way to expand is up, and erecting tall structures seems to be something engrained in human's been happening for thousands upon thousands of years.

the WTC collapse was aided, it did not fall as a result of any "geological process."

Elaine...i'm not much younger than you, and i'm an October baby as well...and probably every bit as stubborn and hard-headed as you are. evidently a bit more logical, however...


btw...happy birthday!

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