Thursday, March 17, 2011

Japan's Darkest Hour (and One of Wright's Finest)

The unfolding tragedy in Japan following last Friday's massive earthquake and tsunami (and subsequent radiation threats) is exponentially greater than that caused by previous quakes, such as the Kobe earthquake of 1995 or the Kanto quake of 1923.  The latter tested Frank Lloyd Wright's barely-completed Imperial Hotel, one of few Tokyo buildings left standing in that cataclysm (a distinction that he exaggerated to the media). 

See Tuesday's story on for more on Wright's hotel design and Japan's ongoing campaign to design more earthquake-resistant buildings.  Sadly, creating buildings impervious to earthquakes accompanied by massive tsunamis may be an insurmountable challenge for architects of any nation.

Part of Wright's Imperial Hotel, in the wake of the 1923 Kanto earthquake

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