Introduction

When the World Trade Center towers were pulverized and the Pentagon blasted in September 2001, and as thousands lost their lives, the damages wrought to these iconic symbols of American architecture and 'neocolonial power' were palpable and immediate (Wright, 2002, p. 126). Images of the architectural devastation were transmitted instantaneously the human catastrophes reverberating from that devastation were global in scale. Buildings that served myriad functions and held fragile lives became...

Hk

Cheung Kong Centre's curtain wall, showing its 'linen steel' cladding and fibre-optic lighting. (Photograph by the author) Figure 6.4. Cheung Kong Centre's curtain wall, showing its 'linen steel' cladding and fibre-optic lighting. (Photograph by the author) These new LAD designers confronted three principal design issues how to maximize the rentable floor space how to retain, with distinction, the appearance of a classical geometric form in a complex urban context and how to develop...

Notes

As Engineering News-Record reported, those U.S. consultants and their projects in France were Parsons, Brinckerhoff, Hall & MacDonald (engineers), and Walker & Poor (architects) on bases in Evreux and Dreux (Normandy) Seelye, Stevenson, Value & Knecht (engineers) and Frank Grad & Sons (architects) on bases at Chaumont, Chambley, Toul and Laon Cutting Associates (inspection work) at bases in Etain and Phalsburg Atlantic Engineers (Amman & Whitney and Guy Panero, architect) at...

Shifting Geographies of Focus

Evidence from previous chapters as well as data presented above in this chapter point to consistent regional variation with respect to U.S. architectural exporting. Therefore, it should not be surprising to find a continuation of this pattern during the final quarter of the twentieth century. In 1978, when 'demand was especially heavy in the oil-rich countries of the Middle East' (A.I.A., 1978, p. 1), many firms obviously trained their attention on that region. However, as the flow of...

Low Tech to High Tech Distinguishing US Architects Abroad

In 1988 Erich Theophile, a 34-year old American architect, began working in Nepal as a programme director of the Kathmandu Valley Preservation Trust, an organization based in Cambridge, Massachusetts that was working with the Nepalese government to preserve the country's architectural heritage. 'Here you reinvent the wheel', Theophile observed, reflecting upon 5 years of experience in Nepal. In addition to helping to restore temples, he also rehabilitated the house where he lived and helped...

Conclusion

As World War II was germinating in Europe and Asia, American architecture and urbanism - in a multitude of forms, spaces and functions - was being adopted as one of the world's major paradigms of progress. The myriad examples discussed above, from south of the U.S. border to the vast expanses of Asia, reflect a variegated pattern of adaptations derived from U.S. prototypes. Part of that pattern was commercial, as 'Wall Streets' of differing scales and complexions were being erected from Havana...

Iron and Steel Primary Genes comprising an Initial Exporting Code

Our exports of manufactures of iron and steel . . . go to every country, to every section where civilization exists . . . Precisely what percentage of these shipments entered into the construction of buildings cannot be given, for the reason that their purposes are not declared on the bill of lading or ship's manifest. That a large part of them serve for building operations there is no doubt. Shipments leave the port of New York every week to equip foreign factories, foundries, rolling mills,...

The Man Who Sells Abroad

Figure 3.1. 'The Man Who Sells Abroad'. Ocean-going vessels, wharfs and tropical settings were part and parcel of the mystique associated with American exporting prior to World War I. The cost- and system-conscious trader next to a wooden crate and hand truck helped complete an archetypical image of a contemporary American export merchant. (Source System, 1914, 26( 5), p. 483) not continue forever to take care of itself', Hough asserted, 'it must be nursed and cultivated if it is to be...

Acknowledgements

I would like to thank all those who have granted permission for reproduction of illustrations. Particularly, as noted in the Preface, I thank Nancy Wolf for allowing me to include her drawings. Details of these are as follows Cover 'The Dragon and the Highrise', 2000, pencil on paper, 22 in x 15 in. By courtesy of the Marsha Mateyka Gallery, Washington. (Photo credit Tony Holmes) Introduction 'Who Are We ', 1985, pencil on paper, 12 in x 15 in. Collection James and Marsha Mateyka. (Photo credit...

Exporting the American City as a Paradigm for Progress 19201945

In the 1920s, as American investors increasingly traded internationally and as the market for American architectural products and processes continued to expand, the range of American construction-related exporting increased to the scale of the city. During this period - as will be shown below - some American architects, engineers and contractors began operating overseas as city planners, just as some American city planners began finding in contexts abroad a market for their services. In 1900...

American Builders Abroad at a Fork in the Road Adjust or Go Home 19181930

Many American designers, builders and entrepreneurs became increasingly confident in their abilities to export their construction expertise because of global macroeconomic shifts associated with World War I. Markets thirsty for American steel, concrete, timber, plasterboard and other desirable building materials provided incentives for entrepreneurs to try their hand at foreign trade. Other lures stemmed from easier banking transactions, domestic material surpluses, more well-developed shipping...

Irrational Warfare and Rational Corporate Systems for Construction and Trade c 19141920

Truscon's diffusion in southern China, Australia and elsewhere reflected how concrete was even more significant as part of a building system than it was solely as an innovative building material (Peters, 1996, pp. 63-78). The system of fabricating concrete blocks coalesced a transportable, and easy-to-operate machine with readily available materials. The system of constructing walls entailed imbedding steel rods in the concrete to reinforce its strength. As the Federal Export Corporation...

An Abortive American High Rise for Londons Strand

A second key product that exemplified American construction in the late nineteenth century was the skyscraper, which American entrepreneurs began to market and construct overseas at the end of the nineteenth century. As Chicago, New York and many other U.S. cities began to see their skylines change due to innovations in steel-framing for high-rise towers, some Americans realized that these structures could be packaged as a set of discrete, stackable components to be assembled abroad, in...

Steelframed American Workspaces for Export

Despite the success Milliken enjoyed within certain Figure 1.30. Union Building (in the middle of the three buildings shown), Union Square, New York. Alfred Zucker's experience designing these kind of high-rise structures in New York was crucial in his transplanting that expertise to Buenos Aires in the early 1900s. (Photo David Van Zanten) Figure 1.30. Union Building (in the middle of the three buildings shown), Union Square, New York. Alfred Zucker's experience designing these kind of...

US Military Victories in 1898 Confidence Commerce and Construction

American military victories over Spain in Cuba and the Philippines crystallized the ire of many critics who lambasted the U.S. government for engaging in imperialist activities. For example, Mark Twain's 1901 essay 'To the Person Sitting in Darkness', reflected his anti-imperialist sentiments Shall we That is, shall we go on conferring our Civilization upon the peoples that sit in darkness, or shall we give those poor things a rest Shall we bang right ahead in our old-time, loud, pious way, and...

US Government Assistance in the Face of Competition

Despite several fervent attempts by the U.S. government in the immediate postwar period to provide what I characterized in the preceding chapter as 'public gloves' for AEC professionals from the U.S. to practice abroad, by the mid-1970s those attempts were sometimes falling short of their intended goal. Although in 1976 the U.S. construction industry ranked first in the field of overseas contracts 16 , by the end of the decade it ranked only fifth 5 . The leading four countries were then Japan,...

Contents

1 Exporting Steel-framed Skeletons of American Modernity 1 Expositions of 1876 and 1893 Initial Catalysts for Exporting American Architecture 6 The Atbara Bridge U.S. Engineers trump U.K. Competitors in Africa 9 An Abortive American High-Rise for London's Strand 14 Shipping American Skyscrapers Abroad Milliken Brothers 15 Alfred Zucker's High-Rise Skeletons for Buenos Aires 19 Steel-framed American Workspaces for Export 20 U.S. Military Victories in 1898 Confidence, Commerce and Construction 22...

Shipping American Skyscrapers Abroad Milliken Brothers

At the turn of the century, if there was an American skyscraper 'invasion', it was not restricted to Europe. By 1910 high-rises erected with American components were soaring from East Asia to South Africa to Central America. There is a steady development of demand for steel buildings of American design throughout the world . . . In the early stages of the development of the American skyscraper, American methods of steel building construction were not regarded with favor by foreigners. Many of...

Info

Source American Exporter, 1899, 43(5), p. 30. Source American Exporter, 1899, 43(5), p. 30. Some of the reasons for this shift were not unlike those related to iron and steel technologies These results were perhaps partly due to the superiority of material, partly to the more perfectly systematized order of manipulation and the general intelligence of the management, but in the main to improved processes and the universal adoption of the latest types of labor-saving machinery. (American...

From Components to Systems the American Construction Specialist

In the nearly four decades between 1876 and 1914, the exporting of American structural steel contributed to proliferating U.S. trade activities and helped create a significant platform from which later American practitioners and entrepreneurs benefited. International exhibitions, military victories, the object lessons demonstrated by high-rise construction in American cities nationwide, and sporadic but intensifying transactions between American firms and foreign clients all contributed to the...

The Panama Canal as a Concrete Enterprise 19041914

South America became a major sphere of American contracting influence not only because of U.S. military victories in 1898, but also because of how overtly American politicians and engineers became involved in solving the challenge of how to link the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans by creating a canal in Central America. What became known as the Panama Canal became a highly significant object lesson of American prefabrication skills, railroad engineering, contracting ingenuity, improvisation and...

Concrete Components of Architectural Innovation c 19001914

Either by propping the steel frame upon concrete footings or by placing it upon a more expansive concrete raft foundation, American architectural exporters increasingly complemented steel with concrete as a problem-solving building material. By reinforcing concrete with steel rods, or by using steel machinery to form concrete blocks as prefabricated building blocks, Americans seeking a foreign market for portable buildings further diversified their architectural offerings. In so doing they...

You Too Can Be Like Us American Materials Spaces and Skills to Europe 19451958

Many U.S. contractors convinced themselves that because of what they deemed to be pressing needs for economic recovery after the War, Europe would provide fertile ground for U.S. construction expertise and materials. In June 1948, when the U.S. government launched the European Recovery Program (i.e., the Marshall Plan), the economic tools for achieving the Program's goals seemed to confirm those expectations. These tools included 'loans, grants, investments, production and productivity'...

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Alfred Zuckers High Rise Skeletons for Buenos Aires

Another intriguing Milliken-related example, the Plaza Hotel, arose in Buenos Aires between 1905 and 1909 (figures 1.27 and 1.28). The architect responsible for the design of this high-rise skeleton in a South American metropolis was Alfred Zucker, an adventurous German-American architect who immigrated to Buenos Aires from New York in June 1904. Zucker, the son of a mechanical and civil engineer, was born in Freiburg, Germany in 1852 and was trained in Aix-en-Provence, Hanover and Berlin...

Foster Milliken 1865 - 1945

For slate from Maine to Europe, see American Mail and Export Journal, 1879, 3(1), p. 413 for the Eclipse Windmill Company's exporting of prefabricated windmills from Beloit, Wisconsin to several countries, see ibid., p. 407. By 1895 'American windmills had been sent to every known country on the face of the globe . . . and the ideas of American manufacturers have been copied by French and German makers' (American Mail and Export Journal, 1895, 32(10), p. 145). 2. Edge Moor was one of the...

Hong Kongs Cheung Kong Center 19951999

In the early 1990s Li Ka-shing, one of Hong Kong's most powerful industrial entrepreneurs, began planning the erection of a new 62-storey corporate headquarters for one of his flagship companies, Hutchison Whampoa Property Group (Chan, 1996).6 In 1995 he chose one of central Hong Kong's prime locations, at the corner of Garden Road and Queen's Figure 6.3. Cheung Kong Centre, located between the Bank of China (L) and the Hong Kong-Shanghai Bank (R) in Central, Hong Kong. This flagship skyscraper...

American Building and Planning in China 19071937

Foreign Investment China After 1911

In 1933 one of the countries where the Austin Company exported its construction expertise was China. East of Hangzhou (Zhejiang) and north of Guangzhou (Guangdong), Austin erected a series of buildings for aircraft manufacturing, using (as they had in Russia) 'unskilled local labor under the supervision of Austin Company engineers'.4 In the midst of growing civil warfare in China caused by Japanese invasions and severe rifts with the Communist Party, the Chinese Nationalist government...

Acquiring Mental Angles of Approach the AlAs Foreign Relations Committee 19201930

Between World War I and the Depression, many American architects seemed generally less well-prepared for practicing abroad than many of their counterparts in civil engineering, building contracting, or material exporting. There were certainly some notable exceptions (such as Frank Lloyd Wright in Japan, and others introduced below) but American architects often rode abroad cautiously on the coat tails of others in the building industries. In this regard, design and construction were dynamically...

Exporting Steelframed Skeletons of American Modernity

The exporting of American architecture began in the mid-nineteenth century as a disjointed set of personal adventures and commercial initiatives. Some of the adventurers were entrepreneurs selling either building components or prefabricated structures, such as slave structures, windmills and wharf buildings. Others were daring individualists with a flair for the unknown. Still others were building and planning consultants who were either lured abroad by new kinds of clients or propelled...

New Spirit of Construction Federations of Contractors and their Challenges to Rationalize

Near the end of World War I, 'many thoughtful observers among American contractors began to realize the instability, lack of harmony, and generally uncertain conditions that beset their industry' (Constructor, 1929, 11(2), p. 38). These included (a) inefficient methods of financing (b) confusing relations with engineers, architects and property owners (c) vague, contradictory and non-uniform standards of construction (d) turbulent labour relations (e) conflicting government policies regarding...

From US Metropole to Latin American Peripheries

Some of the most overt examples characterizing the exportation of the American city were directly related to the aftermath of American military victories over Spain in 1898. In both the Philippines and Cuba, American military engineers significantly altered the morphology of cities throughout those dominions. As outlined in Chapter 1, Manila, Baguio and other cities in the Philippines became the focus of American city planners and architects such as Daniel Burnham and William Parsons. In Cuba,...

Taking the Longer Road Building Banks in Argentina and China 19171924

Klein's first question asked - long before American fast food franchises were established - how well-suited were 'typical American commodities' to non-Americans' diverse needs. One 'typical American architectural commodity' was an up-to-date banking structure which, as a result of the Federal Reserve Act in 1913 and new investment possibilities, some U.S. banks began erecting in many financial centres worldwide by World War I.7 Two examples of this trend, the First National Bank of Boston's...

Exporting American Construction and Planning to Russia

Albert Kahn Architect Ford Review

One of the most curious series of construction dramas that reflect the growing pervasiveness and increasing scale of American architectural influence between the two World Wars was played out in the former Soviet Union. Jean-Louis Cohen (1993, 1995) and William Brumfield (1990) have written extensively about several dimensions of this influence. Brumfield's analysis of how Russians perceived American architecture from 1870 to the end of World War I concludes that 'enormous and efficient define...

The Challenge of Opportunity in Latin America Gringos and the Middle Masses5 19451958

If the Middle East and western Asia were financially intriguing for American AEC professionals in the early 1950s, the region that received even keener attention of both private AEC hands and public U.S. gloves was Latin America (Whyte and Holmberg, 1956). Table 5.9 reflects how much private investment was targeting Latin America (37 per cent of the total) versus other regions. It also shows that both manufacturing and petroleum industries were receiving higher levels of investments relative to...

Ymca

Source Condensed Brochure, Purdy & Henderson Company, no date, pp. 4-5. Source Condensed Brochure, Purdy & Henderson Company, no date, pp. 4-5. values shall be reduced to 90 of those values. Where beam reactions are not shown, beam connections shall develop beam capacity under uniform load, but shall in no case be less than the American Institute of Steel Construction standard connections or their equivalents.2 Therefore, from the most micro-level scale of the individual components to the...

Taking the Shorter Road the Fuller Construction Company of the Orient 19201926

The Bank of Boston and IBC's longevity in their respective cities is a measure of their tenacity in the face of dramatic political and social changes in the past 80 years. The long road of each bank continues to this day. However, in the case of the Fuller Construction of the Orient, the road taken was much shorter - six remarkable years - which nonetheless had far-reaching implications for Japan, the country where simultaneously with the IBC and Bank of Boston cases Fuller tried to export its...

Expositions of 1876 and 1893 Initial Catalysts for Exporting American Architecture

Because so many U.S. architects, engineers and builders were culturally tethered to Europe, it is tempting to see the cross-fertilization of architectural knowledge prior to the 1870s as largely a one-way street from Europe to the former British colony of the United States. However, this Eurocentric assumption is called into question when one considers how the economy of the former colony was also so intermeshed with those of non-European regions. For example, during the eighteenth century,...

Kahn becomes a Popular Concrete System for Export c 19051914

Degres Plate Reinforcement

One of the most important of American concrete exporting companies that capitalized upon the symbiotic relationship between concrete and steel was Truscon, a firm founded by Albert and Julius Kahn, designers of some of the first U.S. automobile factories. Ford's Highland Park plant 1910 was one of the most significant Hildebrand, 1974 Banham, 1989, p. 84 , in part because of the trend it helped set domestically and also because of the impact the plant had on Europeans, such as Giacomo...

Lighthouses in a Sea of Ignorance Object Lessons in the Middle East Africa and Asia 194519584

One of the most unusual U.S. trade fairs occurred in Kabul, Afghanistan in 1956, when the featured exhibit was the largest geodesic dome that Buckminster Fuller had ever designed up to that point 100 feet in diameter , erected in two days using local labour. 'Putting the dome together demonstrated to locals that innovation need not be expensive, arcane or threatening' Haddow, 1997, p. 61 . Ironically, given what occurred almost half a century later, on 11 September 2001, 'photomurals of the New...

The Atbara Bridge US Engineers trump UK Competitors in Africa

Atbara Bridge

As suggested above by the Edge Moor Iron Company's operations in Australia, one significant example of American architecture as an exported cultural product was the railway bridge. Americans offered several advantages to purchasers of steel bridges in foreign countries, in spite of that prejudice which naturally favors one's own countrymen . . . Americans are twenty years in advance of other nations except Canada in the art of bridge design and construction. Clarke, 1901, p. 43 By the late...

Kathleen Feagin Architect

Although I did not know it then, this book began in Shiraz, Iran in Fall 1978 when my companion and later wife Mary and I - both Americans - were teaching English to finance our 3-year odyssey through Europe and Asia. Mary had been hired to tutor a dentist's wife who lived next to the American Consulate. Having left the U.S. in 1976 as wandering backpackers, we were stunned 2 years later to find ourselves surrounded by American-style, split-level houses - towering above opaque walls - in a...