Friday, July 10, 2009

Bat Tower and Architectures to come

Nagel posses the question "What is it like to be a bat?" Heidegger claims that humans become human through their building-dwelling-thinking triad. Now, what happens when one builds for another species? Do we become more human or more animal?

These questions are posed by the monolithic and haunting Bat Tower in Sugarloaf Key (mile marker 17 in the keys). The tower was built in 1929 with the notion of using bats to eat the misquotes and other pests and so combat malaria in the area. The tower was built by Richter Clyde Perky, a fish lodge owner, according to designs from Charles Campbell, a pioneer of bat studies. Bats were bought in from Cuba and Texas to inhabit the tower but eventually flew away and disappeared. No one knows what happened to the bats and the tower stands awaiting bats of the future haunted by bats of a mysterious past.

Some great images of the tower are available online.