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They were different then

If you were anywhere near social media yesterday, you probably saw this story, but I wanted more than the tweet version.

In 1930, Indiana Bell needed a new headquarters because the old one was too small. They wanted it on the same lot, but the old building had to keep functioning throughout. So they moved the building sixteen yards South, rotated it 90 degrees and then moved it 30 yards West and built the new building on the spot it had just vacated.

It moved about fifteen inches a month, mostly by way of hand-operated jacks. When all the jacks were pumped, the building moved 3/8 of an inch.

The building was fully functional the whole time: gas, electricity, sewage, phone. There was a wooden sidewalk built in the shape of an arc around the movement.

The original building was demolished in 1963. 🙁

More story from Kottke, Amusing Planet, Wikipedia. Animation: YouTube, GIF.

March 22, 2021 — 7:58 pm
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