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Old November 9th, 2009, 11:17 PM   #921
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Viperfreak2 View Post
What I've learned from this thread: There ARE tourists. It seems like some people enjoy seeing "how the NK's do things". In a funny backwards sorta way, or real curiosity...I don't know. I personally would never spend the time or money to visit, as I could imagine being on a beach on a Greek island for the same price. Just sounds like more fun to me.
Lot of people from China go to the DPRK because they want to get a sense of what it used to feel like living in a Stalinist country and also the DPRK is the only place left in the world that you can get that feeling.
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Old November 10th, 2009, 03:46 AM   #922
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I think this building will fit very well in outskirts of Lisbon (Portugal), specialy in other side of the River Tagus, the city of Almada!



Just put this building in the place called "Margueira" and we have the first portuguese skyscraper!
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Old November 10th, 2009, 08:29 PM   #923
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Originally Posted by droneriot View Post
The concrete actually looks better than that of 23 Marina.
WHAT?

[IMG]http://i42.************/254zwja.jpg[/IMG]
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Old November 10th, 2009, 08:30 PM   #924
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Maybe you could post a comparison picture, or two?
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Old November 11th, 2009, 09:50 PM   #925
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23 Marine, Dubai

[img]http://i34.************/ay4rv7.jpg[/img]
[img]http://i37.************/2pyx8wh.jpg[/img]

http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=341366
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Old November 12th, 2009, 07:37 PM   #926
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Originally Posted by Harryx5 View Post
Who will visit North Corea , were are the thousands of tourists that will fill the hotel ?
I read that they are going for a compromise mix: Restaurants on top (with maybe a few floors reserved for 3G equipment), tourist hotel rooms near top floors, offices and apartments filling the big lower parts to help Pyongyang's slowly expanding economy.

Basically, Ryugyong is now a mixed-use building. I think that makes sense on a Return-On-Investment perspective for them.

________

As for concrete qualiy, that's worrisome but the photos clearly show concrete restoration work going on. Does anyone have photos of close-ups of completed concrete restoration? Looking closely at photos earlier, they covered up the balconies in green, and when the green got uncovered, the balconies look much better than the deteriorated photographs. So, concrete restoration is being done.

Concrete restoration is possible. I witnessed it happen locally at an old Canadian apartment tower that had poor concrete quality. Crumbling balconies with rusty rebar sticking out, the effects of hot-cold cycles over many winters with little maintenance. In restoration, they disassembled all the railings, bolted all patio doors shut. The balconies was just squares of ugly ragged concrete sticking out, just like the bad-concrete Ryugyong photograph (but not nearly as bad). They jackhammered all the weak concrete off, about a few inches in until they reached strong unweathered concrete layers, then recast the balconies using the pre-existing stubs of strong concrete / rebar. Occasionally they added new rebar (anchoring it deep in) where existing rebar was weakened. So it's possible to re-cast concrete on top of a concrete stub, provided you 'dress' and 'prepare' the stub properly, including drilling and anchoring new rebar into the ragged stubs before casting new layers of concrete all around it. Strength verification needs to be done too, there are electronic devices that can do it now. Oh, and the Canadian apartment tower ended up much more beautiful than expectede, with a nice modern white-gray-green theme afterwards, and the concrete looked excellent quality for a change. So concrete restoration can do wonders, but it looked like a very labour-intensive and expensive activity. To combat the expense of concrete restoration which is very labour-intensive, I would imagine a small number of Egyptian engineers got a large amount of cheap or nearly-free North Korean labour, trained them in the arts of construction, and the rest is history...

The question is... how much concrete restoration is being done at Ryugyong?

NEW PHOTO REQUEST: Closeup of balconies that have undergone concrete restoration work. (the whiter and blockier-neater-shaped balconies I see in other Rygyong photographs)

Last edited by Mark Rejhon; November 12th, 2009 at 07:57 PM.
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Old November 12th, 2009, 07:51 PM   #927
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How is that funny?
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Old November 12th, 2009, 09:28 PM   #928
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3G equipment you funny
In the photos, the 3G equipment appears to be internal. So one of the floors must be used. Yes, 3G equipment is fairly compact versus yesterday's cellphone quipment, or could be stored at the base (with the antennas inside one of the floors). Or it could be hidden in the pinnacle which appears to have space for varous kinds of equipment, without windows, as long as RF-transparent panels are being used. Or the antennas could be on the under-rim of the top.

(Yes, one of the conditions of Orascom's North Korea 3G network is tied to the Ryugyong renovation. Yes, 3G exists in North Korea now. Yes, 3G is probably mainly used for UMTS voice at the moment without data -- for the time being. But it *is* a live 3G network being used by over 45,000 cellphone right now in North Korea, with the number growing)

Anybody with photographs of the cell antennas that was recently installed in Ryugyong?
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Old November 12th, 2009, 10:34 PM   #929
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Originally Posted by Mark Rejhon View Post
I read that they are going for a compromise mix: Restaurants on top (with maybe a few floors reserved for 3G equipment), tourist hotel rooms near top floors, offices and apartments filling the big lower parts to help Pyongyang's slowly expanding economy.

Basically, Ryugyong is now a mixed-use building. I think that makes sense on a Return-On-Investment perspective for them.

________

As for concrete qualiy, that's worrisome but the photos clearly show concrete restoration work going on. Does anyone have photos of close-ups of completed concrete restoration? Looking closely at photos earlier, they covered up the balconies in green, and when the green got uncovered, the balconies look much better than the deteriorated photographs. So, concrete restoration is being done.

Concrete restoration is possible. I witnessed it happen locally at an old Canadian apartment tower that had poor concrete quality. Crumbling balconies with rusty rebar sticking out, the effects of hot-cold cycles over many winters with little maintenance. In restoration, they disassembled all the railings, bolted all patio doors shut. The balconies was just squares of ugly ragged concrete sticking out, just like the bad-concrete Ryugyong photograph (but not nearly as bad). They jackhammered all the weak concrete off, about a few inches in until they reached strong unweathered concrete layers, then recast the balconies using the pre-existing stubs of strong concrete / rebar. Occasionally they added new rebar (anchoring it deep in) where existing rebar was weakened. So it's possible to re-cast concrete on top of a concrete stub, provided you 'dress' and 'prepare' the stub properly, including drilling and anchoring new rebar into the ragged stubs before casting new layers of concrete all around it. Strength verification needs to be done too, there are electronic devices that can do it now. Oh, and the Canadian apartment tower ended up much more beautiful than expectede, with a nice modern white-gray-green theme afterwards, and the concrete looked excellent quality for a change. So concrete restoration can do wonders, but it looked like a very labour-intensive and expensive activity. To combat the expense of concrete restoration which is very labour-intensive, I would imagine a small number of Egyptian engineers got a large amount of cheap or nearly-free North Korean labour, trained them in the arts of construction, and the rest is history...

The question is... how much concrete restoration is being done at Ryugyong?

NEW PHOTO REQUEST: Closeup of balconies that have undergone concrete restoration work. (the whiter and blockier-neater-shaped balconies I see in other Rygyong photographs)
------------------------------------

Thats funny. This sat untouched from 1992-2008! 16 years of neglect! The structural concrete was designed to have a facade over it. Standing water. Freeze thaw cycles. 16 YEARS! There is no "restoring" the concrete. Structurally this building will never ever be habitable. (at least by the developed world standards) They are putting a facade on it because it is a blight on the skyline. They are putting antennas in it / on top and thats about it. They might be able to open up some ground level retail, but the structure is not salvageable beyond being a giant antenna tower. It would be more cost effective to just build another one instead of trying to use this structure for a hotel.

I have no clue where you got your information from, but it is flat out wrong. There are no plans for any development of the tower beyond the ground level.
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Old November 13th, 2009, 12:48 AM   #930
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Originally Posted by webeagle12 View Post
3G equipment you funny
I think not if you read the last article about Orascom.
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Old November 13th, 2009, 08:34 AM   #931
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Originally Posted by EddieB317 View Post
------------------------------------

Thats funny. This sat untouched from 1992-2008! 16 years of neglect! The structural concrete was designed to have a facade over it. Standing water. Freeze thaw cycles. 16 YEARS! There is no "restoring" the concrete. Structurally this building will never ever be habitable. (at least by the developed world standards) They are putting a facade on it because it is a blight on the skyline. They are putting antennas in it / on top and thats about it. They might be able to open up some ground level retail, but the structure is not salvageable beyond being a giant antenna tower. It would be more cost effective to just build another one instead of trying to use this structure for a hotel.

I have no clue where you got your information from, but it is flat out wrong. There are no plans for any development of the tower beyond the ground level.
I kind of agree with you on the restoration part.. but how do you know that there are no other plans other than the ground level? No one on here knows for sure. Everything is just speculation as we all clearly know that this building is a special case..
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Old November 13th, 2009, 09:23 AM   #932
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Thats funny. This sat untouched from 1992-2008! 16 years of neglect! The structural concrete was designed to have a facade over it. Standing water. Freeze thaw cycles. 16 YEARS! There is no "restoring" the concrete. Structurally this building will never ever be habitable. (at least by the developed world standards) They are putting a facade on it because it is a blight on the skyline.
Eddie, eddie...

Would you believe some Montreal highway overpasses are nearly as bad condition as the Ryugyong photograph? We even had to put chainlink covering to prevent crumbling concrete from falling onto highways below. We had a highway overpass collapse, killing several people, if you saw Canadian news.

They were neglected for roughly equally as long as Ryugyong, with VISIBLE AND EXPOSED rebar, chunks of concrete in median, with cars speeding underneath. Many chinese overpasses are safer (and you all engineers know what the Chinese standards are; even though they are rapidly improving).

Did you hear of that multi-ton chunk of concrete fall from Montreal's Big O (1976 olympic stadium) a few years ago? (Okay, not close -- the montreal overpasses were in much worse shape, much closer to Ryugyong)

I saw some massive concrete restoration work on some overpasses, and they did a damn impressive job restoring 15-year-neglected concrete with exposed rusty rebar. These aren't your everyday 5-pound block crumbles from your everyday neglected concrete overpass -- there are raggedness on many Montreal overpasses at the time, with 100+ POUND missing chunks of concrete -- no exaggeration.

Although a massive concrete restoration project happened in the last many years, some overpasses here in Montreal (where I spend some of my year in, for work purposes), still have chainlink covering the partially crumbling sections. I even *SAW* new rebar being inserted into the pre-existing concrete, very professionally, and it looked like an amazing restoration when done. It definitely looked very expensive and labour intensive.

HAVE YOU ACTUALLY SEEN CONCRETE RESTORATION LIKE THIS BEING DONE? I have. I can justifiably compare that ugly photo to Montreal's crumbling concrete infrastructure from several years ago -- even though it may only be 90% as bad. We're talking missing concrete chunks of over 100 pounds per crumbled area; and multiple missing segments, exposed rebar, and authorities letting the bridges still in use, until one Montreal overpass finally crumbled and killed people -- google this.

Quote:
I have no clue where you got your information from, but it is flat out wrong. There are no plans for any development of the tower beyond the ground level.
It was something I read sometime ago, the source reputedly said it came from somebody at Orascom. It might be inaccurate, but it makes a lot of sense.

Remember, North Korean standards aren't even nearly as lax as Montreal standards were -- and believe me, concrete restoration on THAT PHOTO is possible. It may never be as strong as many North American buildings -- but if the building is *STILL* standing with that deterioration, then concrete restoration will potentially still double or triple the structural strength. Which may be ENOUGH for North Korean standards, and more than enough to bear the weight of internal 'fittings'.

It is true it will be mostly empty initially, but cheap North Korean labour will slowly fill the innards of the building for whatever purposes -- storage, apartments, office hotels, etc. Who knows, it may only have 1/10th the number of hotel rooms originally intended (the top 20 floors is probably approximately only 10% the volume of the whole Ryugyong, anyway) -- and it may even take 5 to 10 years for North Korea to get enough tourists. North Korean guides, according to returning travellers, are permitted to advertise that they can come back and stay in the hotel when it's finished -- apparently seems to be something permitted by authorities. Anyway, they don't even have to fit out those rooms for 5 years from now, so both you and me might very well be right. The key word is that it definitely isn't "never".

Again, I've watched concrete restoration sites out of interest as a fellow Canadian, and concrete restoration on THAT deterioriated concrete is possible, even if it's not a complete restoration to original strength. It may be beyond repair, but then again not -- there are /still/ definitely dramatic re-increases in strengths possible under many conditions, such as the need for a floor or balcony to bear many times its weakened max load -- believe me -- even if not up to full Western standards.

Sure, it may be impossible, if the quality is worse and the North Koreans did not sufficiently overengineer it, but the fact it did not collapse after 16 years of weathering, and I don't even see any balcony that's fully broken off -- those balcony slabs are thinner than that big chunk that fell off the big O a few years ago. The balcony slabs look awfully thin -- but if they survived 16 years, I am very impressed despite the shoddy workmanship and shoddy alignments. They didn't undergo the vibrations, salt, rust, variable weight bearing, of Montreal's overpasses. Balcony restoration essentially the equivalent of chiseling off weak and weathered concrete until you hit stronger layers, then you recast compatible high-quality concrete. If interior rebar is sufficiently deteriorated (exposed to elements), also anchor high quality rebar extensions replacing the bad rebar. (I've seen it done) Bam. End result, strength is already multiplied, and the rebar is now much better protected. While fix a few alignments partially (thickening and lengthening where required and feasible to do so, such as lengthening short balconies and cutting long balconies where they vary by a few inches relative to proper alignemnts, etc. Or just simply finding the shortest balcony and cutting all balconies to match, etc. Consistency improvements, to a certain extent is done elsewhere, but this is a massive and probably un-heard-of scale when it comes to Ryugyong). Yes, concrete restoration is extremely labour intensive and sometimes cheaper to rebuild, but whoa, whoa, we're talking North Korea, and the ego of restoring pre-existing structure rather than the embarassment of demolishing and rebuilding from scratch. Now suddenly, one come to reluctant agreement that this seems like a feasible scenario. Yes, engineers, yes the concrete is never back to its original strength in many cases and probably will never be in Ryugyong, but it is "good enough" -- it's still standing, and it's possible to re-multiply the strength of concrete sufficiently enough to actually use the building for something. And it'll even be much stronger than that collapsed South Korean shopping mall, or that collapsed Montreal overpass. Easy as pie (not counting the maddening difficult labour of concrete restoration). And it won't weather anymore, because now it's protected by a facade.

And remember -- Montreal with its tough Canadian massive temperature swings from sub-zero-F temperatures in winter to over-90-degree-F temperatures in summer. For you centigrade people, that's -35degrees C swinging to +35degrees C in temperature throughout the year. That's nastier than North Korea. And overpasses aren't heated, and overpasses are more abused with roadsalt, than Ryugyong probably was -- the rebar in Ryugyong balconies surprisingly show less 'brown' than some of the montreal overpasses a few years ago before the massive concrete restoration projects of a few years ago. The salt will cause more rebar expansion, than even mildly pollution-acidified rain would do to Ryugyong...

Anyway, it may after all, be apples to oranges, and I know nothing of what I talk about -- but believe me on the tattered appearances of Montreal overpasses (before one collapsed) was what came to my mind when I saw the ugly close-up photo of Ryugyong.

------
Again, to reiterate: New photo request: Close-up of restored balcony concrete.

Last edited by Mark Rejhon; November 13th, 2009 at 10:40 AM.
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Old November 13th, 2009, 09:46 AM   #933
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Montreal's crumbling concrete infrastructure (before recent improvements), example links...

http://www.cbc.ca/canada/montreal/st...t20030516.html
http://www.financialpost.com/persona...tml?id=1851173
http://www.cbc.ca/canada/montreal/st...ssvictims.html
http://news.google.com/newspapers?ni...g=4373,6103691
http://autos.canada.com/winterdrivin...5.bin?size=hhl (notice the chain link that's installed on the bridge in the background too, too bad it's not a close-up. See the exposed rebar on the bridge in the background too, not just on the pillar.)

(And I've also seen much worse in Montreal than those pictured in these articles, much closer to the Ryugyong stuff).

Yes, it probably is easier to tear down and rebuild, but who says the North Koreans are logical in their approach -- more feasible "politically" to use concrete restoration techniques to the best of the abilities that the Egyptian engineers teach them. (hopefully they got some good foreign engineer bosses that are leading the cheap North Korean labour, otherwise Orascom wouldn't back the project...)

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Old November 13th, 2009, 09:50 AM   #934
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Proof of concrete restoration (even if it's not to western standards)
See the green covering?

image hosted on flickr


I dare you to tell me that does NOT include concrete restoration. Click on the other 80+ pages of this thread, and the photos where the green is removed from the steep angles, have much whiter, more cubic-shaped balconies even in the non-closeups.

And Ryugyong is a mixed-use building, not just a hotel, according to BBC quoting Orascom:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asi...ic/8306697.stm
BBC is far from gossip...

Quote:
Dozens of Egyptian engineers and some 2,000 local workers are working on the Ryugyong project, which Orascom's chief operating officer, Khaled Bichara, tells the BBC is "progressing well", despite reported problems with suspect concrete and misaligned lift shafts.
"There have been no issues that have caused us too much trouble," Mr Bichara says. "Most of the work at the moment is coverage of different areas of the building. The first job is to finish the outside - you can't work on the insides until the outside is covered.
"You can see that we have already completed the top of the building where the revolving restaurants will be. After 2010, that's when it will be fully safe to start building from the inside."
How the building will be divided up is "not yet finalized" the company says, but it will be a mixture of hotel accommodation, apartments and business facilities. Antennae and equipment for Orascom's mobile network will nestle at the very top.
Mr Bichara denies reports that the company's exclusive access to North Korea's fledgling telecoms market is directly linked to the completion of the hotel.
But he says the job is a way of planting a rather tall flag in the ground. "We haven't been given a deadline, we are not tied into doing it by a certain time," he said.
"But when you work in a market like this, where we cannot sponsor things, a project of this kind is good to do - it's word of mouth advertising for us, it builds good rapport with the people - on its own it's a great symbol, one which cements our investment."
See! I was right after all -- these are quotes from Orascom CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER!

Ryugyong is a MIXED USE building
says Orascom CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER!

(the people who is doing the reconstruction of Ryugyong)


And guess what Emaar hired for Burj Dubai? Why, who else -- Orascom!
They tend to be serious about their word -- me thinks moreso than you are about your words.
They know the concrete is bad! They said so! But they are doing it anyway!
And they know what they are doing -- they are the ones building Burj Dubai too.
Trust me, trust me, amazing concrete restoration tricks are done -- and I witness it all the time locally here in Canada, the land of major temperature cycles.

Disclaimer: Orascom also owns WIND Mobile, which is building a new 3G network in Canada. So I've been paying attention to Orascom more than you think, guys...

So Eddie... you're the one who's flat out wrong.

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Old November 13th, 2009, 06:17 PM   #935
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Quote:
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Proof of concrete restoration (even if it's not to western standards)
A skyscraper is not a bridge in Montreal. "restoring" parts of a bridge that only has to handle a temporary, and rather small, load is very different than fixing a 330m tower. I know that you would like to see it fixed, but it is not cost effective. This building has cost millions more than it should have and will never be habitable. The DPRK has cut it's losses on this structure.

Put the pipe down and use your brain. (and don't be such a dick... no one likes a dick)

PS- there is much more to the developed world than the western world.
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Old November 13th, 2009, 06:50 PM   #936
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All I can say is that I wouldn't want to stay at that hotel, even on the lower floors. Even well restored concrete is not the same as the original.
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Old November 13th, 2009, 07:03 PM   #937
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AFAIK the only reason this thing is being finished is because of 3G, read: They allow some Egyptian (or something) firm to enter the North Korean market with 3G if they pay for finishing the Building. Some kind of a start of modern north korea they'll call it (imho)...
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Old November 13th, 2009, 08:32 PM   #938
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Put the pipe down and use your brain. (and don't be such a dick... no one likes a dick)
I don't smoke or do any drugs --

That said, I'm arguing against a blanket statement that says concrete restoration is definitely impossible. It might /not/ be possible in many cases, but it's not /guaranteed/ impossible.

Who knows, it could be all propaganda -- but as we've all seen, we've seen questionable construction projects go ahead anyway all over the world. Time will tell if they drag it out to never-inhabited status.

It's probably true that many won't want to stay in the hotel due to the quality of the concrete (even if it's restored). Again, it won't be to western standards which I totally agree it won't be.

I get defensive when someone tries to rebut information (i.e. Orascom chief) with misinformation. Currently, the /official/ plan appears to be a multi-use Ryugyong by both the North Korea governments and by Orascom, from what I'm observing, and we can't refute that. True, in /reality/ they might find something impossible, or the building suddenly collapses, or North Korea kicks Orascom out, but that hasn't happened so far yet. Thusly, it remains, the /official/ plan (and publicly announced) is a multi-use Ryugyong that won't remain empty forever.

The truth is:
- It's possible to shimmy a straight elevator into a crooked elevator shaft using spcaers, etc. (As long as the top floors can still "see" the bottom). I can't imagine that the crookedness exceeds 2 feet (and that's probably exaggerating, the crookedness is probably less than that, but you never konw). Even at a 2-foot-skew between the worst crooked floor, it is still possible to install elevator in that, the elevator may just have to be 2 feet narrower, to allow a straight inner shaft in the crooked outer shaft. Retrofits of elevators into old 19th century buildings, over the years, have had to contend with issues such as these.
- It's possible to restore severely degraded concrete, even though in many cases you can't restore it to original strength.

We don't even know, definitively for sure (with modern engineer re-evaluations and modern concrete refurbishment techniques, not 1992 techniques) if Ryugyong is long-gone or recoverable, but apparently, Orascom so far believes (in offical public word) that it is possible. North Korea keeps tight wraps on that sort of information, and I am pretty sure even 1990's documents about the state of Ryugyong is suspect.

So far, we don't have access to engineer structural tests, and we've always been assuming all along, that the concrete is too weak to be really used. Orascom has probably done their homework on this one, and they seem to know what they are doing. Even if they're just "trying to proceed forward" until the eventual impossibility (which there is no evidence has happened yet) or being kicked out...

I don't care about North Korea politics, but I am interested in the science of concrete, its restoration, and refurbishment of such a massively degraded structure, that they are apparenly (under official word) are. It fascinates me that they are even bothering to do this; and that Orascom is willing to take a massive risk. The slopes and balconies have worse wear because they are more exposed to elements above, but the flat walls will survive much better to weathering, and maybe they calculated that they can completely remove-and-recast the sloping walls and balconies completely from scratch. Maybe that's what they are doing. Maybe they're doing the jackhammer-and-then-recast technique. Or some other restoration/refurbishment techniques, I don't know what kind of concrete restoration techniques tey are dng. Or something else. But concrete restoration, of some sort, of some kind, is definitely going on, even if they secretly plan to leave it empty. (Which I doubt will be the case 10 years from now)

---

I'm still interested in close-up photos of the indisputable concrete restoration work that is clearly under-way, especially around the sloping areas and balcony areas.
(regardless or not whether they secretly plan to keep the building empty)

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Old November 15th, 2009, 10:21 PM   #939
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Orascom owns part of Besix if I'm not mistaken.
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Old November 16th, 2009, 02:28 AM   #940
Mark Rejhon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by renovatio View Post
Uhm.... I'm not sure that Orascom has ANYTHING to do with the Burj Dubai..
Sure. See this:
http://www.orascomci.com/index.php?id=burjdubaitower
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