One of the world’s top tourist destinations — New York City — is sinking under the weight of its tall buildings.
A new study looking at measurements from satellites in space and analysing* layers of the Earth has found the weight of New York’s skyscrapers* is proving too much for the soil beneath them to handle.
Soft layers of ground called sediments are shifting under the massive load, pushing them down and outwards.
The city has one million buildings housing eight million people, which weigh a combined 764 billion kilograms. This load is causing the city to sink at up to 2mm each year.
And while 2mm may not sound like much, parts of the suburb of Lower Manhattan stand just 1m above sea level. At the current rate, king tides* may be rolling seawater down its streets within a few decades.
“Every additional high-rise building constructed* at coastal, river, or lakefront settings could contribute* to future flood risk,” US Geological Survey geologist* Tom Parsons warned…