Empty horizons and big booms

There were two preliminary reports heard across the river, starting at shortly after seven o’clock this morning. The real thing happened later and produced several window-rattling concussions, louder than the noises that used to be made when Bergstrom was active and the military planes routinely broke the sound barrier. Farewell, Intel shell. Many of us have grown fond of you. We could envision you as a dormitory for the homeless, with barriers and shelter against the winds and the danger of falling. You would have made a great hanging garden, with plants trailing from the edges. You were a fine venue for arts projects. The horizon looks empty without you.

Update: A few of my toy-camera pictures of the results of the detonations may be seen in miniature stacked to the right on this page; the Austin Flickr group shows more, and a search of all of Flickr on “Austin” and “Intel” will show yet additional pix.

9 Comments so far

  1. ttrentham (unregistered) on February 25th, 2007 @ 10:10 am

    The clock beside my bed said 7:38am when I heard it, first the sound of the charges followed by the rumble of the building collapsing. Watching the replay on News8 pretty much matched what I heard (not surprisingly).

    Jon Lebkowsky’s got some photos in addition to the ones that wae took for his post about it.

  2. Sal Costello (unregistered) on February 25th, 2007 @ 10:18 am


    Austin Mayor Kirk Watson’s (now Sen. Kirk Watson) back door deal with Intel cost city taxpayers $7.5 million in subsidies after they left us with the “Intel shell” eye sore (That deal should be a reminder of how Watson’s deals with special interests always costs the citizens more).

    Watson’s City of Austin Prop 1, of the year 2000, diverted a whopping $67.2 million of our bond dollars, intended for free roads, into toll roads.

    And, today tricky Sen. Watson is pushing Managed Lanes, a fancy way to say toll roads without using the “T” word.

    If you want evidence of the $67.2 million diversion email me for the City of Austin document at sal@austintollparty.com

  3. Rantor (unregistered) on February 25th, 2007 @ 10:18 am

    That’s just about when the Big Boom happened. The windows really did rattle and there were force waves felt. It was the potential for deafening noise that kept us from getting closer. I’m surprised that there are no lost-pets notices on the neighborhood e-mail list. A bit of thunder is usually enough to make some take off and this was more consequential than that. There are various kinds of salutes that take place on the Capitol grounds for various occasions (small cannon and the like) but nothing this remarkable. Even low-flying military planes have never made a noise or sent waves like this.

  4. ttrentham (unregistered) on February 25th, 2007 @ 12:37 pm

    The demolition was scheduled for 7am. Jon says he would’ve missed it, but it was delayed because police were ensuring that some gawkers who’d gotten too close were out of the danger zone.

    That explains why they were 38 minutes late.

  5. wae (unregistered) on February 25th, 2007 @ 12:48 pm

    There was also considerable effort spent towing cars from the area, up until a few minutes prior to the blast.

  6. Rantor (unregistered) on February 25th, 2007 @ 1:50 pm

    I think that the implosion results will make a wonderful photographic backdrop for tourists here for SxSW. Has anybody heard how long it will take to clear the debris?

  7. Eddie C. (unregistered) on February 25th, 2007 @ 3:45 pm


    According to myfoxaustin.com, two months to remove 20,000 tons of rubble.

  8. M1EK (unregistered) on February 25th, 2007 @ 6:49 pm

    “Watson’s City of Austin Prop 1, of the year 2000, diverted a whopping $67.2 million of our bond dollars, intended for free roads, into toll roads.”

    That’s a lie – the money was always intended for right-of-way contributions for highways, top three candidates being SH130, SH45, and Loop 1 North, which were all being considered as tollways (not set in stone, but at least considered that way) at the time.

  9. mss (unregistered) on February 25th, 2007 @ 8:36 pm

    One of the things that seemed to cause the delay was that long past 7am they were still using cherry pickers to put tarps over the windows of the buildings to the north and west. We were standing in the BankOne parking garage at 5th and Guadalupe for almost an hour before the explosion at about 7:38 am.

Terms of use | Privacy Policy | Content: Creative Commons | Site and Design © 2009 | Metroblogging ® and Metblogs ® are registered trademarks of Bode Media, Inc.