Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Architecture, Of, For, and By Dumbasses

There was a big dust-up today about Senator Harry Reid (Dumbass-NV) saying that visitors to the Capitol are stinking stinkies. Oh shit, you mean people can smell bad when they have to stand outside in a tidal marsh during the summer? OH NOES!!!!!

That statement is exactly the kind of thing that I expect from morons, but let's talk about the NEW Visitors Center building at the Capitol constructed to keep Senator Dumbass from having to smell the people instead and get a feel for what government run healthcare is going to be like. The new visitor's center has been designed as a place for the numerous folks waiting to go through the Capitol. Cato does a pretty good job of giving a brief description of the tee-total clusterf*ck of the building.

My job is to marginalize the professional involved in the design, implementation, and construction of the building. That task brings me joy.

Here's the wondermuss website of the Architect of the Capitol. This site is NOT the architect that designed this new visitors center, this is the gummint official tasked with taking care of the Capitol and its grounds. Notice that their site is GREEN. And go to the FAQ questions page to see the total job cost. It is FUNNY that that answer is the ONLY ONE IN SMALL FONT. It's about halfway down the page, too.

Even the Washington Post makes salient points in their evisceration of THE PROJECT. Granted, most of their article is a bunch of mumbo-jumbo written by assholes that like to hear themselves speak, but look past that just this once. Immediately upon completion of reading the article, go back to making fun of those college professor types. Remember, they are embarrassingly stupid.

RTKL was the architecture firm of record. Go see their FLASH SITE HERE for an example of how NOT to build a website. And laugh, NAY! bellylaugh at the menu selection of "Thought Hubs." What in the mortal Hell does that even mean to an elitist moron? "Thought Hubs" AND Flash? Awesome.

The building is 580,000 square feet built underground. This is the same method used by I.M.Pei Partners when they added to The Louvre. This allows you to add new, usable space without damaging the historical facade and access. This technique is described as "Compassionate Design." I agree with the attempts to keep from destroying the historical usage of the Capitol. Their efforts were sensitive to the existing architecture.


The total job cost was 621 million dollars and time overruns were in the neighborhood of five years. It is important to understand that the government does nothing on the cheap and accomplishes nothing in the timeframe assigned, but come on, this is cuh-razy. The cost per square foot exceeds one thousand dollars per. This is so far out of the realm of reasonable job costs that it boggles my mind. A mind that I might add, does this damn work for a living. ($1070.00 a sf!)

RTKL's architect's fees on this total job cost ran around 49.7 million dollars! Gimme some of that action, gummint!

I ran cost estimates for a building this size, using similar construction methods and planning, added twenty-five percent government upcharge and STILL cannot exceed 608 dollars a square foot. And I would have only charged about 28 million in fees and only spent about three and a half years for construction.

Folks, this is why our country is going to the morons. They are in charge.

Please take the time to comment.