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May 23, 2013

A Building is Only As Good As Its Foundation

Posted by Raghavan Subramanian (View Profile | View All Posts) at 6:01 AM

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View from Infosys Office at the Rockefeller Center in New York,USA

Pick any great city of the world. Perhaps you live and work in one of them. Now picture the skyline, filled with beautiful buildings, bridges, and infrastructure.

A while ago,I happened to be in the company's New York City office for a string of meetings. And I clearly recollect the skyline - the view as I looked out the window of historic Rockefeller Center to see soaring skyscrapers of every conceivable shape and size. What's most amazing about the taking in of this spectacular view is something a civil engineer once told me: That what you see above ground in any city is only half the picture. There's as much infrastructure below the ground as there is above it.

What we can see from street level and up is quite beautiful. But it's the guts of a city - things like transit tunnels, foundations, and power lines - that really make it tick. These elements may not always be pretty, but they're the type of things that ensure everyone who is in the city (mostly above ground) can lead productive lives. They are the systems that deliver power and people and water. And they are structures that form the firm foundations on which tall skyscrapers can sit.

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