San Francisco's Millennium Tower is now leaning more than ever

Originally published at: San Francisco's Millennium Tower is now leaning more than ever | Boing Boing


How much does this leaning affect any quake resistance? I can see even a minor shake causing problems


As a poor person in flyover country, I can only look on this saga with bemusement. ISTM like the cost/benefit line was crossed way back.


Sunk cost fallacy might explain his reluctance to admit defeat.


I suspect it’s more some sense of obligation to the developers.


It’s sunk a lot farther on one side than the other.


Especially if there’s a jolt that briefly liquefies the foundation.

Or if a super villain injects air…


I suspect that cost/benefit calculations are considerably colored by the fact that some costs get be be externalities; and that there are strategies for attempting to coax as many as possible onto that someone-else’s-problem side of the line.

There may also be some calculation going on concerning how much effort to make things right is required to avoid the risk of the veil being pierced and criminal charges happening in the event that it falls over and kills a bunch of people; rather than remaining a nice, clean, civil matter whose liability can be attached to a sacrificial shell company and discharged under controlled conditions away from people who matter, or their assets.


Honoré: “The Leaning Tower I adore.”
Gaston: “Indecision is a bore!”


IANASE (structural engineer) but I’m pretty sure this can lean A LOT before it’s unsafe. I think it’s far from being a safety issue. The issue is it’s unlivable. Water will stop draining properly out of horizontal pipes. Things will leak and crack. People will not accept floors that are visibly not horizontal.

Every time this comes up, I say again, the day is coming closer by the millimeter when this tower will have to be disassembled. They can’t use a wrecking ball on this. They have to take it down in a process that’s basically the same as construction, but in reverse.


I used AI art need on the phrase “show the San Francisco millennium tower leaning more than physically possible”, and behold!

Let’s see how close life can initiate art.


Not to be picky, because I agree with pretty much everything you’re saying - but this does in fact sound unsafe.


Perhaps they can reduce the lean enough to demolish the thing.


Hey everyone, so…really sorry. This Hamburger fella owed me money and my lawyer said I should put a lien on his property. I think I might have misunderstood what he meant.


I made sure to see the tower the other year when i was there, they did not seem to be doing much just a lot of hoarding, but America still seemed to be prity closed down due to covid, when we went to Oregon in Portland some of the malls like 70% of shops where still closed, where as back home we had opened up.

music video rap GIF

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Yes, but also anyone who thinks some cost/benefit line has been crossed is vastly underestimating the cost of tearing down a skyscraper. It would probably cost hundreds of millions of dollars to do that, so it’s well worth spending 50m or more to fix it.

Plus, the revenue generated over the lifetime of the building is well into the billions, I’m sure.

All these shenanigans aside, the building is worth saving and will be saved eventually. These shenanigans are just about spending as little as possible in the short term, and ass-covering against liability from future lawsuits, etc. There’s no doubt they’ll fix it, but developers and cities insist on playing these dumb games in the meantime. Everyone has to do the wrong thing a couple dozen times before the right thing gets done.


I note that this analysis, while probably very close to the estimations of the project’s managers, includes no consideration of human lives or safety.


Hyperbole from lifestyle blogs aside, if the building was at legitimate imminent risk of collapse, a fuck lot more would be happening. This has happened before. The Citicorp Center building, for example. US society is pretty broken at the moment, but it still functions more than sufficiently to swing into action to prevent a skyscraper from collapsing in the middle of a major city. If you don’t believe that, then all is already lost.

So yes, at this time, it is not a concern of human safety, which is why my analysis does not include it.


At first I thought neat. (Its a cool effect).

Then I thought wait a minute is he letting kids play in silica dust? The SDS from the brand he is using mentions the breathing hazards…

I mean sure its likely not going to cause acute injury but all I can only think of the bad things that does to lungs especially when you are intentionally making a ton of dust. Maybe I’m just a grump, but youtubers make me nervous more often than I would like…