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northernbizzkit1

Can Memphis even have a decent skyscraper?

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Does anyone know if it is even possible for Memphis to compete anymore with Nashville as far as height goes? I've heard possibilities of height limits due to earthquake potential (I felt the 4 pointer a few weeks ago!). A friend has told me 15 stories is the max (apparently untrue with the plans for the Vue on Main and the 400-foot towers proposed by the RDC). I've also heard the 60-story figure tossed around. Does it even make a difference if the building is earthquake proof? Japan has 100+ story buildings, and they all can withstand substantial ground movement.

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There's no height limit in Memphis based on earthquakes. New buildings are required to be up to code, same as in San Francisco, Los Angeles, etc.

The main attraction of downtown Memphis for residential has been older, historic architecture, and new developments have for the most part been built to fit into and reflect that--basically low to medium rise. I think that's what people who move downtown want.

I could see 30 plus story residential towers in downtown Memphis in 5 or so years assuming demand keeps up. I think the 29 story Vue on Main will be a success and others will follow.

As far as offices go--downtown Memphis gets a new building about once every decade.

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I don't see the potential for a boom in skyscraper construction for Memphis for several reasons. I think a modern skyscraper would look out of place downtown. I guess it could happen...but I doubt anything will top 450 feet. There are a lot of older or more classical buildings downtown. I don't think that the earthquakes are a major issue, considering what you see in San Francisco and LA. One thing that might effect new construction would be the fact that DT Memphis isn't in the center of the city. It is on the edge of town. I would like to see some skyscrapers built in Memphis...I'm just not sure if it will really happen.

Here's something interesting that I find...Memphis had a larger skyline until the 80's Nashville boom. Since then, neither city has done very much, but Nashville is starting to see a lot of proposals, including an approved 400 footer and a possible 700 footer...but we'll have to see. Who knows, Memphis could have a boom like they did in the late 60's-early 70's...

Buildings built over 250 ft tall...in the state of Tennessee

() = total number in city up to that point

Since 2000

Nashville - *1* (under construction)(16)

Memphis - *1* (under construction)(12)

1990-1999

Nashville - 2(15)

1980-1989

Nashville - 7(13)

Memphis - 1(11)

Knoxville - 2(3)

1970-1979

Nashville - 3(6)

Memphis - 3(10)

Chattanooga - 1(2)

Knoxville - 1

1960-1969

Nashville - 2(3)

Memphis - 3(7)

Chattanooga - 1

1950-1959

Nashville - 1

Memphis - 1(4)

1940-1949

None

1930-1939

Memphis - 1(3)

1920-1929

Memphis - 1(2)

1910-1919

Memphis - 1

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okay here the thing about Memphis and earthquakes.

Memphis sits on the mississippi RIver which over the course of thousands of years has changed course several times, leaving several different river beds and a deep clay layer through that area. If i large earthqauek were to hit the memphis area, Downtown would litterally be leveled to to Liquifaction of the clay soil. 2nd Memphis does have a height limit, but only in certain parts of downtown, for example right up next to the river. 2nd off, as the downtown residental population grows and in a way white flight reverses itself, downtown Memphis "office" growth will catch up. Nashvill maybe on "fire" now but they wont be able to maintain it for another decade before they slow down.

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2nd off, as the downtown residental population grows and in a way white flight reverses itself, downtown Memphis "office" growth will catch up. Nashvill maybe on "fire" now but they wont be able to maintain it for another decade before they slow down.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

How do you know this? Do you have any evidence to back it up? I'm not saying that you cannot be right, but you shouldn't make a statement like this unless you have some pretty good proof or evidence to base it on.

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How do you know this? Do you have any evidence to back it up? I'm not saying that you cannot be right, but you shouldn't make a statement like this unless you have some pretty good proof or evidence to base it on.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

well, thats in a way economics. id get really hardcore facts but its 3 am where i am and i am working on finishing htis code haha. i could be wrong, but im pretty sure im right. i'll be sure to put my sources in MLA format for you next time I wouldnt want Nashville folk to squirm unnecessarily ;)

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Both cities seem to be doing great. I don't see much reason for competition anymore unless it's friendly. The two largest Tennessee cities are experiencing huge transformations and what's good for the state is good for me. Memphis is full of charm and energy now more than ever before. Nashville is exciting place to be. I'm glad Tennessee has them both. Each has distinct name recognition, diverse populations, and an appreciation for our individual histories. Seems we're on the same Tennessee team.

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Both cities seem to be doing great. I don't see much reason for competition anymore unless it's friendly. The two largest Tennessee cities are experiencing huge transformations and what's good for the state is good for me. Memphis is full of charm and energy now more than ever before. Nashville is exciting place to be. I'm glad Tennessee has them both. Each has distinct name recognition, diverse populations, and an appreciation for our individual histories. Seems we're on the same Tennessee team.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Well...unless Mississippi offers us a lot of money for it, ^_^ I'm glad we have Memphis on our side. :)

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Well...unless Mississippi offers us a lot of money for it,  ^_^ I'm glad we have Memphis on our side. :)

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Hahaha...Theres not enough money in the whole state of Mississippi to buy Memphis.

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Hahaha...Theres not enough money in the whole state of Mississippi to buy Memphis.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Maybe if they sell us a strip of land with a highway all the way down to Biloxi-Gulfport-Pascagoula...plus their entire income tax base for the next 50 years. :lol:

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Seems like it would be frustrating living in Mississippi. Isn't Jackson their only city with skyscrapers? Looks like a nice city, though. My problem with Mississippi is their state flag.

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Nevermind, I just saw that Mississippi's tallest building is in Biloxi. But my point about their state flag still stands.

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How do you know this? Do you have any evidence to back it up? I'm not saying that you cannot be right, but you shouldn't make a statement like this unless you have some pretty good proof or evidence to base it on.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Its related to space. If the area becomes too saturated with empty offices then people will quit buliding office buildings. If people quit buying condo's in highrises, then they will stop building them.

I had always considered the earthquake thing in Memphis to be the reason for its relatively small skyline. I don't know if its a law or not, but its pretty common sense to think that people wouldn't want to build alot of skyscrapers if there is a chance for a large quake to damage it or knock it down.

Check out this link for the recent earthquakes. Most of the time there are some hits within about 100 miles of Memphis.

http://earthquake.usgs.gov/recenteqs/

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2nd off, as the downtown residental population grows and in a way white flight reverses itself, downtown Memphis "office" growth will catch up. Nashvill maybe on "fire" now but they wont be able to maintain it for another decade before they slow down.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

First of all, neither city is "on fire" for office construction at the moment. And I believe that could apply to the nation as a whole.

Second, while most posters here may not like it, sprawl continues unabated as witnessed by the recent census county estimates which placed most growth in exurban counties. And that trend just continues what's been going on for years---most office buildings are being built in office parks. Again, that's true of Nashville, Memphis, and [the city of your choice].

Third, why do you think "white flight" in Memphis will reverse? Between 2000 and 2004, Shelby had a domestic outmigration of 26,000 and Davidson had a domestic outmigration of 25,000. Both counties were saved from dropping like rocks due to foreign inmigration and natural increase.

I had always considered the earthquake thing in Memphis to be the reason for its relatively small skyline. I don't know if its a law or not, but its pretty common sense to think that people wouldn't want to build alot of skyscrapers if there is a chance for a large quake to damage it or knock it down.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Again, Memphis has absolutely no height limits due to the threat of earthquakes. And modern skyscrapers don't tumble in earthquakes. Old masonry buildings do. For that matter, both St. Louis and Nashville are in the New Madrid fault zone as well.

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Third, why do you think "white flight" in Memphis will reverse?  Between 2000 and 2004, Shelby had a domestic outmigration of 26,000 and Davidson had a domestic outmigration of 25,000.  Both counties were saved from dropping like rocks due to foreign inmigration and natural increase.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I don't think "white flight" will ever be a resolved issue in Memphis. It will have a relative decrease in coming years if downtown continues to prosper with residency and condo developments. If current city government continues to keep a such a bullying tone towards the county, "white flight" will only progress with an exception for those choosing downtown.

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I don't think "white flight" will ever be a resolved issue in Memphis. It will have a relative decrease in coming years if downtown continues to prosper with residency and condo developments. If current city government continues to keep a such a bullying tone towards the county, "white flight" will only progress with an exception for those choosing downtown.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Agreed.

There are thousands of people moving downtown, but I don't think it makes up for the thousands leaving the city and for that matter the county.

I think that's true in most cities. For every 10 people who move back to the city, 20 leave. Even Shelby County has only added 10,000 people from 2000-2004, while it added 70,000 from 1990-2000

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Again, Memphis has absolutely no height limits due to the threat of earthquakes.  And modern skyscrapers don't tumble in earthquakes.  Old masonry buildings do.  For that matter, both St. Louis and Nashville are in the New Madrid fault zone as well.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Not legally. But common sense dictates constrcution there. Skyscrapers don't tumble, but they can crack and warp and have other infrastructure damage. Its a matter of practicality and economy. It costs less to maintain/repair a smaller building.

Anyway, that is getting off topic. I simply meant that it would seem like a good reason not to have them. Memphis is not on the San Andreas, and San Francisco can have skyscrapers then I see no reason why Memphis shouldn't.

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As far as earthquakes in Memphis go, they are usually <4 on the richter scale...not really enough to do much more than rattle your china. When you get 5.5-6.0, then it starts getting more serious.

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For that matter, both St. Louis and Nashville are in the New Madrid fault zone as well.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Nashville is not on the New Madrid Fault...it runs straight down the Mississippi.

Nashville has almost no geologic activity going on (besides erosion of the Nashville Dome). Nashville can feel the major quakes, but is not really in any danger. Knoxville has some earthquake activity, however.

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In regards to skyscrapers in earthquake zones, there is the 70+ story Landmark tower in Yokohama Japan that sits in the middle of a very active earthquake zone. Earthquakes are almost a daily occurance for weeks at a time. I would not see where this would be a limitation in Memphis.

With that said, as Spartan mentioned above, skyscrapers are expensive even without earthquake controls and only get built when there is an economic reason to do so. That is the need to concentrate a lot of people in a small space outweighs the cost of doing so. i.e. Can the owners rent it out at high enough prices to make a profit?

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ok, this earthquake stuff is getting out of control its not like memphis ever had a big one. L.A and S.F are in earthquake zone and have building everywhere. Who made up this earthquake stuff??

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quakemap.gif

http://www.angelfire.com/ga/jjperry/madrid.html

And apparently there is a possibility of an 8+ magnitude scale earthquake in the next 15 years.

Richter TNT for Seismic Example

Magnitude Energy Yield (approximate)

-1.5 6 ounces Breaking a rock on a lab table

1.0 30 pounds Large Blast at a Construction Site

1.5 320 pounds

2.0 1 ton Large Quarry or Mine Blast

2.5 4.6 tons

3.0 29 tons

3.5 73 tons

4.0 1,000 tons Small Nuclear Weapon

4.5 5,100 tons Average Tornado (total energy)

5.0 32,000 tons

5.5 80,000 tons Little Skull Mtn., NV Quake, 1992

6.0 1 million tons Double Spring Flat, NV Quake, 1994

6.5 5 million tons Northridge, CA Quake, 1994

7.0 32 million tons Hyogo-Ken Nanbu, Japan Quake, 1995; Largest Thermonuclear Weapon

7.5 160 million tons Landers, CA Quake, 1992

8.0 1 billion tons San Francisco, CA Quake, 1906

8.5 5 billion tons Anchorage, AK Quake, 1964

9.0 32 billion tons Chilean Quake, 1960

10.0 1 trillion tons (San-Andreas type fault circling Earth)

12.0 160 trillion tons (Fault Earth in half through center,

OR Earth's daily receipt of solar energy)

A 3.0 is 10x stronger than a 2.0

A 5.0 is 1,000x stronger than a 2.0

An 8.0 is 1,000,000x stronger than a 2.0

So think of this...an 8.0 earthquake like the New Madrid quake of 1811 is 10,000x stronger than a "big" 4.0 that some of you might have felt.

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Yeah, if anyone knows the history of reelfoot lake it was created by a series of earthquakes from 1811-12 where a huge amount of land sank below the water level and the Mississippi River filled in the area to become Tennessee's largest natural lake. If an earthquake was strong enough to do that I'm sure it would be strong enough to cause a lot of damage in Memphis.

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Yeah, if anyone knows the history of reelfoot lake it was created by a series of earthquakes from 1811-12 where a huge amount of land sank below the water level and the Mississippi River filled in the area to become Tennessee's largest natural lake. If an earthquake was strong enough to do that I'm sure it would be strong enough to cause a lot of damage in Memphis.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

this was the same earthquake that sent the mississippi river flowin backwards and rang church bells in washington d.c. yeah, i'm pretty sure memphis would have some damage from a quake at new madrid.

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the new madrid earthqauek zone is much more dangerous than the san andreas... san andreas's earthqaukes are common. but when New Madrids fault line... shifts. It shifts A LOT. fortunatly its not often

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