In the cemetery, the coffins are stacked on top of each other. Regularly dead graves to dig half-decayed bodies, to make room for fresh. The old coffins are decomposed and used as fire wood to the poor sold. Forgotten bones lie scattered on the floor, a sweet-rotten smell is in the air.

as far as the macabre funeral reality in London at the beginning of the 19th century. Century. In any other city, the first metropolis of the world was at the time, died as much as in the capital of the British Empire. In the course of industrialization, the population soared to 1835 to two million in 1900, 6.7 million lived in London. The cremation was most in question – a solution had to be found for the dead-is a Problem of the city.


The most radical is the work of Thomas Willson: in 1829, the architect presented his Vision of a gigantic pyramid, which can accommodate up to five million corpses. According to Willson, the 500-metre-high, Obelisk and an Observatory crowned Monster should stand on primrose Hill, one of the most beautiful vantage points of London. Rental price per burial chamber: 50 pounds.

Paradise under the dome

“practical, cheap, and profitable,” applied Willson for his invention, and promised the investors of the “Pyramid General Cemetery Company” for a dream return of five percent a year. Alone: The Parliament was not convinced by Willsons “the Metropolitan Sepulchre”. In 1832 it passed a law that clear the way for Park cemeteries in the London area.

Willson was enjoyed from his time as a Spinner derided – although there is a need for such lateral thinkers to find answers to pressing questions, and the architecture forward. Creative Visionaries such as El Lissitzky, who wanted to move the life in the air: in 1924, the Russian avant-garde of its floating high-rise buildings, the so-called cloud hangers.

life in a transversely placed high-rise: “cloud hangers” of the Russian avant-garde artist El Lissitzky (1924)

Or universal genius, Richard Buckminster Fuller, who wanted to pack in 1968, Manhattan’s city center under a giant glass dome, in order to reduce the energy consumption and to protect the city from heat, cold, dust. Never shovel snow, fantasized “Bucky” and wanted to transform Mid-Town Manhattan, “in a Paradise,” he wrote.

Rem Kohlhaas thought, in turn, in 1996, the “Bangkok Hyper building,” a 1000-Meter-high Monster, should live in the 120,000 people. “The past is too small to live in it,” proclaimed the Dutch architect – sat, but as little as Bucky with his “Manhattan Dome, or Lissitzky’s “cloud-hangers”.

your ideas belong to the Canon of wonderful architecture-castles in the air, gathered in the now-published “Atlas of the never-built buildings” (dtv). Author Philip Wilkinson tells the story of 50 Almost-buildings, which have failed for various reasons.

the 120,000-man-Monster: The Bangkok-Hyper building by Rem Koolhaas (1996)

the construction company went bankrupt – so in the case of 1892, begun in London Eiffel tower in Paris, the whimsy of an eccentric railway Manager, Sir Edward Watkin. Time a different design won the idea competition. The German architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe in 1921, could not prevail with its magnificent Glass skyscraper on the spree triangle in Berlin – instead, an office building that looks emblazoned there since 2009, “as the reason crack two interlocking splined curry sausages inspired by”, the “Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung”.

Other architectural icons is not never came across the drawing Board stage because they were with the former means simply not achievable. Buildings such as the Monument to the III International about: a helical ascending spiral colossus made of steel with rotating glass elements, in which the individual organs of the Communist International to gather.

With 400 meters would have been the monument to be a lot higher than the then tallest building in Europe, the Eiffel tower. At the very top of a radio station in a semi-ball thrones, which turned every hour to himself.

become set In stone chisel size madness

Invented in 1919 by Russian artist Vladimir Tatlin, the Monument to the widely visible Symbol of the Revolution: Full of awe-inspiring the Comrades carried a bulky model of the tower at 1.-May-demonstrations through the streets.

a Major Revolution, unwieldy Monument: model of Tatlin’s tower (1925)

Only to realize the revolutionary monument- just as the unification of the proletarians of all countries. It is a head birth, remained, in their bombastic proportions comparable with Boris Iofans “Palace of the Soviets” for dictator Josef Stalin, or the Nazi Vision of a “world capital Germania”: in stone to chisel of delusions of grandeur in the middle of Berlin.

Fearsome blocks – but not as exciting as it is such a fantasy entity, the contributed real concerns. In front of a nuclear strike. At the height of the Cold war, the British “Archigram”, the Visionary Ron Herron in 1964 presented his model of the “Walking City”: a 50-storey U-boat-and-Egg, could move on giant spider legs wherever it is needed.

DISPLAY Philip Wilkinson:
Atlas of the never-built buildings

A history of great visions,

dtv publishing company; 256 pages; 30.00 Euro.

away from areas of land that have been devastated by nuclear bombardment or the destruction of the environment – to secure regions where the economy is booming. Can be used the Hiking would be a city for the global nomad, but also as a reception camp in the case of Wars and crises; before the rockets you could crawl as fast as lightning, Not to the moon.

A Science-Fiction Gimmick, inspired by fear of the Future as technology euphoria, the architects of today are inspired. Because it provides ground-breaking questions, book author Wilkinson: Must protrude to be the city of the future is necessarily fixed, right angles, and, in the height?

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Or you may, if necessary, also on the bottom of the sea slumbering? As the thinkers of the British group of architects “Archigram” and presented 50 years ago, their idea of an “Underwater City”, nobody believed in its feasibility. Today, a modern Atlantis, in close proximity seems. At least when it comes to the Japanese construction company Shimizu.

“Ocean Spiral” is the name of their Vision of a water settlement of up to 5000 people in an acrylic glass housing of the capsule, to work, to have a good time. Estimated Construction Cost: 23 Billion Euros. “The ocean offers endless possibilities,” says Shimizu 2014 at the presentation. Or, as formulated by captain Nemo in Jules Verne’s Sci-Fi novel “20,000 leagues under the sea”: “I see hope for future times when humanity is ripe for a new, better life.”

From the walk-in elephants on the Acropolis-Palace to the Endless tower: point-and-Click with a day by the most beautiful architecture-castles in the air of the story!

Sam Yoon has many years of experiences in journalism. He has covered such areas as information technology, science, sports and politics. Yoon can be reached at 82-2-6956-6698.