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Timeline WIP

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Spot the Hole

Looking at how city size relates to hole diameter.

If Phoenix, Arizona (pop. 1,469,471) had a ring it would be 800m in diameter – spot the hole:


And here is Las Vegas with a ring (harder to spot). With a population of just under 600,000 the hole would “only” be 500m across. Of course it would be a lot bigger were it to also cater for the estimated 40 million visitors per year.

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The winner builds the city whilst the loser digs a hole!

Mounds of earth from inside the hole are disposed of on the outskirts of the city. Over time these mounds of excavated sand and rock begin to enclose the city. Plots of land become increasingly valuable within the mound limits, leading to more fights and the rings expansion. Eventually the hole begins to engulf the same city it created – all that is left is a bizarre landscape – a massive hole surrounded by its contents.

I will make mini flat-stages to illustrate, but for now this quick diagram should make things clearer:

Plans – need a lot of tidying up, but exploring different concepts in relation to how the hole is excavated:

Option 1 (click link for pdf) – Radial Plan, digging in phases over time as the ring expands. I am not convinced by this option as I think the phasing and constantly changing slope angle makes the solution quite “messy”.

However, it does allow for the roads that lead to the boxing ring to become inhabited by shops and services once they are inside the rings perimeter, creating a city within a city. Pavements and streets inform main access ways within the ring, so that the city informs the ring and vice versa.

So, moving on to Option 2, which works a bit like a massive drill:

Option 2 (click link for pdf) – Concentric plan. I think this solution holds a lot more potential as it is more cohesive with the argument.

Use a huge drill-type machine that slowly moves continuously to excavate the hole. In plan the machine is relatively slender (just the width of the road, potentially providing the only way to directly cross the ring), but in section it is chunky (the same size as the hole it is creating). Boxing ring located on top of the machine so that it is raised above the crowd. I think this could be a really exciting problem/solution to develop. Questions include:

– how to continually expand this machine

– how to design it so that it is engraving the seats and topography as it goes

– its potential to create beautiful coloured rings in the rock from above, almost polishing it through excavation.

Now the roads can only lead to the outskirts of the ring, but if the ring is acting as a black hole consuming everything in its way it makes perfect sense for the roads to be wiped out by this machine as it expands, so that in the end all the roads in Ego are sucked into the perimeter of the ring

How will this continually excavating machine not kill people? Perhaps:

– Moves extremely slowly so in the few hours that a fight happens its movement is negligible

– Lifts up at times of fight, raising the boxing ring

– Or is it somehow powered by the city so that it can only move when the city is functioning, and when the city stops (at times of fight) it also stops?

The excavated ground could also potentially be blown from the machine to form the mound of land that begins to encircle the city (needs a bit more thought).

Possibly the most futile digging machine in existence – it continually runs in a circle digging a hole that eventually consumes the city!

For now I will keep exploring other digging solutions too, particularly from the mining industry (such as controlled dynamiting). The excavating solution I choose is going to be crucial to developing the ring, but I think it would be good to make a decision by Friday.

(Super-wordy post, impressed by anyone who read this far!)

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