Skyline

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For other uses, see Skyline (disambiguation).

A skyline is the horizon that a city's overall structure, human intervention in a non-urban setting, or nature, creates. City skylines serve as a kind of fingerprint as no two skylines are alike. For this reason, news and sports programs, television shows, and movies often display the skyline of a city to set a location. The term The Sky Line of New York City was first introduced in 1896, when it was the title of a color lithograph by Charles Graham for the color supplement of the New York Journal.[1]

Paul D. Spreiregen, FAIA, has called a skyline "a physical representation [of a city's] facts of life ... a potential work of art ... its collective vista."[2]

The skyscrapers of New York City are almost all situated in Manhattan, seen here in this panorama viewed from Weehawken, New Jersey, in January 2015. Prominent tall buildings include One57 and 432 Park Avenue, left of center; the Empire State Building, right of center; and on the far right of the picture, One World Trade Center, the tallest skyscraper in the Western Hemisphere. Near the last mentioned, Four World Trade Center, 70 Pine Street, the Woolworth Building, and 40 Wall Street can be seen. At the center of the skyline picture, the Chrysler Building, The New York Times Building, and the Conde Nast Building can be picked out of the crowd by their spires.
The skyline of Hong Kong is a combination of natural and man made lines. The panorama view seen here is the Hong Kong Island expansive skyline and the world's famous Victoria Harbour from Kowloon. Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre and Central Plaza (which is the former Asian tallest building from 1992 to 1996), left of the centre; Bank of China Tower (Hong Kong) (the former Asia's tallest building; the first building outside North America to break the 305 m), Cheung Kong Centre and HSBC Building on the right of the centre; International Finance Centre and The Center on the right

History[edit]

Early examples[edit]

Modern skylines[edit]

Ski lift pylon in Italy transforming a natural skyline

Some natural skylines have been unintentionally modified for commercial reasons.

Features[edit]

Skyscrapers[edit]

Main article: Skyscraper

Tall buildings, including skyscrapers, are the fundamental feature of urban skylines.[3][4]

Towers[edit]

Towers from different eras make for contrasting skylines.

San Gimignano, in Tuscany, Italy, has been described as having an "unforgettable skyline" with its competitively built towers.[5]

Sports stadiums[edit]

Main article: Stadium

The Colosseum and 2008 Beijing Olympic Stadium give varied sport stadium skylines.

Remote Locations[edit]

Some remote locations have striking skylines, created either by nature alone or by sparse human settlement in an environment not conducive to housing significant populations.

Apollo 17 Moon landing site panorama

Architectural features[edit]

Notable architects influencing skyline[edit]

Norman Foster served as architect for the Gherkin in London and the Hearst Tower in Midtown Manhattan, and these buildings have to added to their cities' skylines.

Albert Speer made a notable night time skyline with searchlights at Nuremberg.

Use of skylines in media[edit]

Skylines are sometimes used as backgrounds for movies, television shows, news websites, and in other forms of media.

Subjective ranking of skylines[edit]

Several services rank skylines based on their own subjective criteria. Emporis is one such service, which uses height and other data to give point values to buildings and add them together for skylines.

Gallery[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Moving Uptown". New York Public Library. Archived from the original on 2014-12-29. When Charles Graham's view of New York was published, the new term used in the title, "sky line," caught on immediately. 
  2. ^ Paul D. Spreiregen (1965). Urban Design: The Architecture of Towns and Cities. McGraw-Hill. 
  3. ^ Heath, Tom; Smith, Sandy G.; Lim, Bill (July 2000). "Tall Buildings and the Urban Skyline: The Effect of Visual Complexity on Preferences". Environment and Behavior 32 (4): 541–556. doi:10.1177/00139160021972658. ISSN 0013-9165. 
  4. ^ McNeill, Donald (February 2005). "Skyscraper geography". Progress Human Geography 29 (1): 41–55. doi:10.1191/0309132505ph527oa. geographers have tended to neglect the substantial impact of skyscrapers on urban life. 
  5. ^ http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/550

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]