PBS will release a special new documentary to DVD and Blu-ray April, 29th.
Super Skyscrapers outlines the changes that have come to the world of building skyscrapers. It shows how their construction has changed from the first design on paper to the final steel beam in construction. It shows how designers and construction companies have pushed the envelope in order to make today’s skyscrapers greener, stronger and more luxurious. The program is split into four separate segments: “One World Trade Center”, “Building The Future”, “Vertical City”, and “The Billionaire Building.” The program was produced by Blink Films UK. The series was coproduced by Dan Oliver and Dan Chambers.
Oliver discussed what led him to take on the project in a recent interview. “It’s clear that a new generation of buildings is rising around the world,” he said. “They are extraordinarily complex, strong, tall and safer than ever. It was an amazing project to get behind the scenes in various stages of their development. We got an inside look at how today’s ever-improving technology is literally changing the game in construction, and the way global citizens are living their lives.”
Super Skyscrapers opens with a segment titled simply “One World Trade Center.” This segment of the program focuses on the final year of construction of One World Trade Center. Construction head Steve Plate is interviewed along with various scientists, engineers, iron workers, and curtain-wall installers, as the final floors are finished. It all culminates with the installation of the tower’s spire, which brought the tower’s height to a symbolic 1,776 feet. Plate and other interviewees share their thoughts both on the construction itself and what it meant to raise One World Trade Center from the ashes of Ground Zero.
The second segment of Super Skyscrapers is titled “Building The Future.” This segment focuses on London’s Leadenhall Buiding. The building, popularly nicknamed “The Cheese Grater” for its unorthodox shape and steel exoskeleton, is a central piece of London’s avant-garde architectural boom. The team behind the building’s construction was forced to dramatically re-think everything they knew about the traditional building model. The building’s various pieces had to be constructed off-site before being delivered to the build site and stacked and bolted together “like a giant Lego set.”
Viewers are whisked from London to China in the third segment of Super Skyscrapers. “Vertical City” centers on China’s Shanghai Tower. The tower, reaching a staggering 120 stories, has been recognized for having one of China’s best “green ratings.” When it is completed, the Shanghai Tower would be the world’s second-tallest building. It would house a collection of businesses, services and hotels. And the total number of people inside the tower would equal the population of Monaco. It would all be built on a footprint roughly the size of a football field.
The fourth and final segment of Super Skyscrapers brings viewers back to New York, where the program started. In the final segment of the program, viewers are taken from the site of Ground Zero to Manhattan, where the One57 is currently under construction. The “Billionaire Building” as it has been dubbed will soar to 1,000 feet and will have a total of seventy-five stories upon its completion. This will make it the tallest residential tower in the Western Hemisphere. It will boast stunning views of New York City’s Central Park. The condos housed in the building have state-of-the-art interiors, including double-height ceilings, full-floor apartments, bathrooms decked out in the finest Italian marble, and handmade kitchens from UK craftsmen. As with the program’s other segments, this segment follows the progress of the tower’s life. It follows the building’s progress from its original design on paper to its construction.
Super Skyscrapers will be available for SRP of $29.99 on DVD and $34.99 on Blu-ray. It will be presented on two discs both on DVD and Blu-ray. Audiences can pre-order both sets now online via the PBS online store at http://www.shoppbs.org/search/index.jsp?kwCatId=&kw=super%20skyscrapers&origkw=Super+Skyscrapers&sr=1. More information on this and other PBS programs is available online at http://www.facebook.com/pbs and http://www.pbs.org. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.