Its record? A walk of 61 meters in “only” 18 days
The PALACE that WALKS on PAWS
Have you ever thought about moving? I guess so. However, many people are frightened by the fear of leaving a building because they are often seen as real nests of memories and securities. To solve this problem, the old man who starred in the animated film “Up” decided to move his home, carrying it with thousands of balloons inflated with helium. In reality, a house has not yet flown with balloons, but another weird solution has been found to move buildings: robotic legs. Where and why was the walking building designed?
# The walking building is Chinese and is over 85 years old
Nothing to do with the small flying house of “Up”: the walking building is a 4-storey building. Apparently, the building has decided to take a walk during the intermission, as it is a school built over 85 years ago – the Lagena Primary School – in Shanghai. Although it was important to free the space in which it was located to build a new shopping center, the city also wanted to preserve the old building.
# The school had an irregular shape, so they put paws on it
Usually to move buildings of this size – considering that the school weighs 7,600 tons – a concrete plate is built and used to slide them on tracks and special guides. But this time, also conditioned by the irregular shape of the building, a Chinese company specializing in this kind of removals has decided to go further, doing something never tried: it has put robotic paws at the school.
# A 61-meter walk in “only” 18 days
Step by step, 200 legs moved the building for over 61 meters. The robotic legs were designed using insect legs as a model, and functioned using a hydraulic system. The move took “only” 18 days, but will have long-term benefits. The school, in fact, was not demolished for a very specific reason, and this is explained by the General Manager of the Pacific Xintiandi Business Center: “We hope to give a new life to the old building” by making it “a building that combines cultural education. with the intangible preservation of heritage, involving both culture and innovation“.
The world of moving buildings in China is definitely renewing itself and, never like this time, it’s doing it step by step.