NEW YORK — More often than not, the mad rush to get out of town on Friday nights winds up being a real workout — luggage heaving, temples beating and foot tapping.
But Rotterdam-based UCX Architects aims to lighten the load for weekend warriors with its proposal for Adrenalintower, a city skyscraper with areas carved out for snowboarding, skydiving, skiing, ice climbing, desert-type hiking, mountain biking and other heart-racing activities.
Thrill-seekers are accustomed to instant gratification — they don’t want to wait to have fun, explained UCX cofounder Jasper Jägers.
“Before everyone took a plane to Hamburg to ski [or exercise.] Now each city has its own beach and if they don’t have one, they make it,” Jägers said. “People nowadays need some kind of adventure. They don’t want to go to the park to sit in the sun.”
The Adrenalintower, which is also tagged “Leisure Island,” is still conceptual at this point but could be built for “hundreds of millions,” Jägers said. The firm has tried to take all elements into account. High-rise diving, which could range from 20 to 200 meters, calls for elevators filled with water or equipped with hot tubs so divers would not catch a chill. Similarly, elevators with snowy interiors would whisk skiers and snowboarders to their peaks.
Jägers and business partner Ben Huygen crafted the design for an exhibition sponsored by the Architecture Institute of Rotterdam at the local public library last winter. Jägers likened the Adrenalintower’s scale to that of Disney World, but “for the moment” there aren’t any investors lined up. It would also put little-known Rotterdam on the map as a travel destination, he said.
“We really believe it’s a matter of time before these kinds of things will be possible,” Jägers said. “Ten years ago people would go to functions but today functions are being brought to the people.”
The year-old UCX has whipped up other unconventional ideas for Rotterdam, such as its prize-winning Red Light Platform, a futuristic indoor plaza designed to intertwine the Dutch city’s legalized prostitution, which in Rotterdam is visible in windows, in clubs and on the streets.
Accessible by car, the Sky Platform would offer privacy, as well as a view of the city, and a cluster of nightclubs.