Wednesday, March 10, 2004

Following Don's thought experiment below has sparked my imagination. As Don points out there are many things about a real "rainforest" that would be highly undesirable in the Porkforest. Beside the mosquitos, heat, and humidity he mentions are things like protruding tree roots and changes in elevation. Surely the Porkforest will be ADA compliant. Accordingly, since we have no real interest in a true ecosystem from the perspective of flora, fauna, or climate, it would seem that fake trees would serve nearly identical purposes to real ones. Obviously, to become a true attraction, and to accomodate the large numbers of projected visitors, some sort of recreational activity space will have to be included as well. Perhaps an acre or so could be cleared and covered with synthetic turf so that visitors or people from the Iowa City/Coralville metroplex can partake in spontaneous or planned sporting events. This area would likely need a 20 foot perimeter for safety purposes and for those taking part in the activities to stand around and watch or strategize. Obviously, these recreational activities are likely to draw spectators. These spectators will need some sort of raised seating to see over the assembled participants. Perhaps some bleachers could surround the activity area in a bowl shape. All those fake trees are probably going to significantly block the view. Nix those. The total glass surround will provide far too much glare, concrete and and a couple hundred mercury vapor lights will nicely simulate an even daylight. Given the costs of the venture, wealthy patrons will have to be attracted as well. How about some skyboxes with complimentary beverages and hors de voures? Finally your going to have to have seating for 60-80 thousand people and ensure that the damn thing fills up at least 8 times a year to actually pay it off. I'm still trying to figure out an attraction that could do that. Maybe some of the others have an idea.