Some argue that almost no projects, including our most treasured ones, would ever be undertaken if some form of delusion about costs and benefits werent involved. Had the true costs been known for the Sydney Opera House, for example, which had a cost overrun of 1,400 percent, this architectural wonder may not have been built. Delusion is necessary for action and for exquisite design according to this argument. The paper examines and refutes the argument in a comparative study of the Sydney Opera House and the Guggenheim Bilbao Museum. The paper concludes that the incompetence of Sydney in building its opera house destroyed the carreer of one of the 20th century's greatest architects with lasting damage to world architecture. Frank Gehry's Guggenheim Bilbao Museum shows the way to go. As stunning and complex as the Sydney Opera House, it was built on time and budget and makes a lot more money than projected, both for itself and as a development vehicle for the city of Bilbao and the Basque region. Through an interview with Frank Gehry the secrets of building world class architecture on time and budget are teased out.
Harvard Design Magazine, 2005, Issue 22, p. 50-59
megaprojects; Sydney Opera House; Guggenheim Bilbao Museum; Jorn Utzon; Frank Gehry; delay; cost overrun