Monday, November 14, 2011

Skyscrapers in North Korea and Chicago

As I have recently been to Chicago, where the first skyscrapers had been build, I am now able to compare these. There are some buildings that resemble the West, like the Pyongyang Koryo Hotel or the Yanggakdo Hotel; and there you see one essential point, these have been build to be used by foreigners. An ambitious project has been the Ryugyong Hotel, a pyramid shaped construction, butworks began in the n80ies, had been stopped during the 90ies as the economy collapsed, and might open in 2012. It dominates the skyline, for sure, even if it isn’t finished or won’t be finished after all. There are lots of pictures in the booklet “DPR Korea Tour” issued by the National Tourist Administration, but you won’t find a hint at the Ryugyong Hotel. The rest of the huge buildings bear lots of concrete. While the elevators might just cover the needs of the passengers, they might be unoperational elsewhere in Pyongyang. I heard about people going up to the 20th floor using the stairs. Lack of electricity?

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