People move all the time. In fact, the average American moves to a new home around 12 times throughout their life. Buildings? Bridges? Not so much. There are a few notable exceptions, some of which have been memorialized in the Guinness Book of World Records. Here are three notable records covering structures that, for some reason, were moved to a new home.
Heaviest Building Moved Intact
On November 10, 2004, the Fu Gang Building in China was moved in one piece for 35.62 meters, or about 117 feet, over 11 days. Why so long? The building weighs 15,140.4 metric tons (or 33.3 million pounds) and is 34 meters (or 111 feet) tall.
There are two ways to move a building: piece by piece, or intact. There have been many buildings that moved great distances by being taken apart, shipped away, and restored. Take Agecroft Hall for example, which started as a historical house in England and was brought piece by piece to Richmond, Virginia where it stands today. Smaller and simpler buildings, of course, are typically easier to move in one piece. On the Chilean island of Chiloe, old superstition taught that homes on haunted ground should be moved to new land by oxen.
Farthest Distance To Move A Bridge
“London Bridge is falling down…” as the old children’s song goes. Except this time it was simply being moved! In 1962, London Bridge was auctioned off to an American named Robert McCulloch for $2,460,000 (£876,000). McCulloch had the bridge moved to Lake Havasu City in Arizona where he hoped it would attract tourists to his new development. They moved the bridge brick by brick until it was finally reassembled and reopened in Lake Havasu City in 1971. The total distance moved by those globetrotting bricks? About 8,530 km (5,300 miles).
Heaviest Man-Made Object Moved
The Gullfaks C installation is an oil rig far up in the Norwegian North Sea. It first went into use in late 1989, but moving it out into position was no picnic. Sitting in 216 meter-deep waters (or 708 feet), the rig had to stand at 380 meters (1,246 ft 8.6 in) to be suitably above sea level. So yeah, it’s heavy. About 1.4 to 1.5 million tons (3.08 to 3.3 billion lbs) heavy. About a third of that weight is solely concentrated in its massive concrete base.
So how about it? Should things this massive ever be allowed to move? How do people have that kind of patience? Let’s see if any of these relatively old records are broken in the near future.