Crystal Palace Essay Research Paper During the

Crystal Palace Essay, Research Paper During the 1800?s Great Britain?s empire stretched around the world, and with raw materials easily available to them this way, they inevitably began

Crystal Palace Essay, Research Paper

During the 1800?s Great Britain?s empire stretched around the world, and

with raw materials easily available to them this way, they inevitably began

refining and manufacturing all stages of many new machines and other goods,

distributing locally and globally. However, despite being the central

?workshop of the world,? Britain was not producing the highest quality of

merchandise. When comparing factory-made products made in England to surrounding

countries, most notably France, those products could not compare as far as

craftsmanship and sometimes, simply innovation. It was suggested by Cole and

supported by Prince Albert that England host a sort of free-for-all

technological exposition to bring in outside crafts into the country. These

planners supported free trade, thinking that if local business was exposed to

foreign-made goods, they could incorporate those new ideas into their own goods,

increasing their worth. Though originally intending to invite only neighboring

countries to this exposition, the plan soon escalated to include the global

environment. As organization and sponsorship was planned out, the matter of

where to host such a large and ongoing event arose. Ideally, it was to take

place in London, to sort of show off the best of the country and impress

in-coming visitors. The problem was that London was already built up and filled

in, and little open space remained for the needed time period. It was decided

soon that a portion of Hyde Park would provide the needed location, so it looked

as though the problem of a site had been solved. However, there were many

opposers to the plan. In general, foreign imports coming in such great

quantities could undermine British industry. More specifically, the site itself

was questioned. Though the park offered enough space, the British were very

protective of their parks, and thought that the fair would lower property values

of the highest portion of town, as well as permanently ?disfigure? the

natural area. Amongst the criticisms, the committee still had to plan a

structure to hold the event. Most ideas involved a long, one-story building made

of brick. The problem was that it looked far too solid and difficult to remove

later – not to mention that it probably could not be built in time. Further

debate and redraftings didn?t help speed the project along, either. Paxton

submitted his idea late in the game, but was almost instantly adopted. It was so

cost-effective, the fair?s planning committee had to accept his proposal. The

overall design resembled a greenhouse, as he had grown up planning gardens. This

was the first building to use glass as a primary material, and while it solved

the concern of proper lighting needed, it was a bit of surprise to most people

because it was considered unsafe. Plus, a tax had recently been placed on the

material, so the amounts needed were questionable. However, the plan was

embraced by the contractors, mostly on the merit that the sections of the

building were all pre-fabricated modules, able to be built anywhere. Then, the

portions would be shipped to the park?s site and installed to the base already

formed there. The speed of the erection amazed many people. Paxton wanted people

to even let people in free once the exposition officially opened, but these idea

was not even considered by anyone but him. He valued invention over beauty, but

tried to show that invention could even redefine aesthetics. The plan apparently

worked, and the media dubbed the building, ?The Crystal Palace.?