The stories that make up Why Buildings Fall Down are in the end very human ones, tales of the interaction of people and nature, of architects, engineers, builders, materials, and natural forces all coming together in sometimes dramatic (and always instructive) ways.
Matthys Levy, an architectural engineer, is a principal of Weidlinger Associates, a structural engineering firm. He has won numerous awards, including the AIA Institute Honor Award. Richard Panchyk is an editor and writer who works at Gannett Fleming, an architectural engineering firm.
In Why Buildings Stand Up, Salvadori wrote so knowledgeably, expressing his sheer delight, about bridges, loads, stress, weather and a host of other topics, that the general reader was totally captivated by what he might have expected to be a fairly dusty subject. This successor volume is, as may be imagined, less aesthetically satisfying but a whole lot jazzier. It chronicles and explains spectacular architectural failures - some of them horrible disasters: bridges, tower blocks, dams, some new and some ancient. The ghastly collapse of the Hyatt Regency hotel in Kansas City in 1981 is one case to be examined in detail along with the causes of this bureaucratic and engineering failure, and the author finds room as well for disasters of a different kind in such places as Dresden and Coventry. The 11 September terrorist attack in New York is also given detailed structural treatment. These books are enthralling. There's no question of having one of them: you need them both, and the way you look at buildings will never be the same again. (Kirkus UK)
WHY BUILDINGS FALL DOWN
W. W. Norton & Company
Place of Publication
Country of Publication
New York City, NY, US
Why Structures Fail