Why high-tech architecture died

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Pompidou Centre
credit: Lloyd Alter

When I was in architecture school, the Pompidou Centre was perhaps one of the most influential and important buildings of the era; it just blew everything away with its exposed services, escalators crawling up the outside, incredible structure. It was the paragon of high tech architecture.

Now architect and writer Witold Rybczynski writes about what happened to high tech.

The truth is that the exposed structure and plumbing and ductwork that characterized High Tech architecture never made much sense. It weathered badly, for one thing—the Pompidou Center required an expensive facelift after only 20 years. The goal of infinitely adaptable architecture didn’t make sense either.

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