How much all the buildings in New York City weigh

New York City has a lot of buildings in its 300+ square miles. All those structures weigh a lot:

Photo by Michau0142 Ludwiczak on

New geological research warns that the weight of New York City’s skyscrapers is actually causing the Big Apple — whose more than 1 million buildings weigh nearly 1.7 trillion pounds — to sink lower into its surrounding bodies of water.

Given the innovations that helped give rise to all of these buildings, can we expect innovative solutions to the consequences of all that weight? One approach would be to create barriers between the surrounding waters and the habitable areas. However, that does not fully address the weight and the ground under the buildings. Are there ways to prop up large structures?

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