Daily digest: Dissecting the Mexico City subway collapse, a contentious Marilyn Monroe statue, and more

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Daily digest: Dissecting the Mexico City subway collapse, a contentious Marilyn Monroe statue, and more

Forever Marilyn in Palm Springs, California, in 2013. The statue, originally fabricated in 2011, toured the U.S. but is now permanently installed in Palm Springs. (Fred Miller/Flickr, accessed under CC BY-SA 2.0)

Welcome back to the start of another week; here are the stories to read up on to get the day started off right:

Construction errors seem to be at the root of the deadly Mexico City subway collapse

On May 3 of this year, a Mexico City Metro overpass collapsed when a train traveled over it, killing 26 people and injuring another 76. What went wrong? According to a new preliminary report from the Mexican government, errors during the construction of the overpass, in line with what an earlier New York Times investigation found, are reportedly to blame. Subpar welding, along with the use of too few studs, likely caused a structural collapse exacerbated by deferred maintenance (even as residents complained to the government about their concerns for years leading up to the failure).

H/t to the New York Times

Up to 90 percent of China’s Bitcoin mining operations could be winding down

Viral videos over the weekend showed crying Chinese cryptocurrency miners, with tears in their eyes, shutting down their massive server farms and packing up after Sichuan province pulled the plug on their operation. Although hydroelectric power is abundant in the region, Chinese regulators have still banned all Bitcoin mining in the province over the weekend, sending the cost of Bitcoin plummeting by over 17 percent. Now miners are attempting to sell their equipment abroad (and, for the most part, succeeding).

H/t to Gizmodo

A controversial “upskirt” Marilyn Monroe statue is installed outside of the Palm Springs Art Museum

Despite protests and a petition against its installation, a 26-foot-tall sculpture of Marilyn Monroe with her dress being blown up has been formally installed outside of the Palm Springs Art Museum. The installation of Forever Marilyn, designed by sculptor Seward Johnson, has been opposed by community groups and the last four directors of the museum (the sculpture, originally built in 2011, began life in Palm Springs and later toured the country before returning home). However, the Palm Springs City Council, which unanimously supported the project, claims the statue’s permanent installation will be a major boon to tourism for the California desert city.

H/t to The Art Newspaper

This drywall-finishing robot is saving time on job sites

San Francisco-based startup Canvas is reportedly rolling out its robotic drywall robots to real-world construction sites; attached to scissor lifts, the robots can reportedly tape, spray, and sand installed drywall much quicker than any human, potentially shaving days off of a project. A number of contractors have signed on to put the robot to work around California, and it has been successfully deployed at the Harvey Milk Terminal at San Francisco International Airport, the new Chase Center Towers in San Francisco, and more.

H/t to Construction Dive

Inwood’s long-delayed library-and-affordable-housing combo is finally moving ahead

A new branch of the New York Public Library, topped with 174 permanently affordable units of housing, is finally on the way for Inwood in Manhattan. Designed by Fogarty Finger Architecture and Andrew Berman Architect, “The Eliza” will bring a three-story, 20,000-square-foot branch of the NYPL, topped with another 11 stories of residential units, to the uptown neighborhood at 4790 Broadway. The 14-story complex, named for Elizabeth Schuyler Hamilton, the wife of Alexander Hamilton, is on track to open in 2023.

H/t to New York YIMBY

Examining the colonial commentary of Maya Lin’s Ghost Forest

Maya Lin’s Ghost Forest, finally installed in Manhattan’s Madison Square Park in May of this year, is a stark monument and commentary on climate change’s impacts, both the immediate destruction and slow death of ecosystems. But, as Vina Orden writes for Hyperallergic, the installation’s siting, in the shadow of the Daniel Burnham-designed Flatiron Building, Ghost Forest takes on new meaning when evaluating the colonial history of the surrounding structures. Burnham, for instance, was responsible for designing white enclaves in the Philippines for the Bureau of Insular Affairs.

H/t to Hyperallergic