A skyline is the horizon created by a city's overall structure, or by human intervention in a non-urban setting or in nature. City skylines serve as a kind of fingerprint as no two skylines are alike. For this reason, news and sports programs, television shows, and movies often display the skyline of a city to set a location. The term The Sky Line of New York City was first introduced in 1896, when it was the title of a color lithograph by Charles Graham for the color supplement of the New York Journal.
Paul D. Spreiregen, FAIA, has called a skyline "a physical representation [of a city's] facts of life ... a potential work of art ... its collective vista."
- Stonehenge's skyline has been known for millennia.
Some natural skylines have been unintentionally modified for commercial reasons.
Towers from different eras make for contrasting skylines.
- Tower of silence
- San Gimignano Towers
- 9 Water towers in Villejuif (Paris)
- A cell phone tower making a surreal addition to the skyline
Some remote locations have striking skylines, created either by nature or by sparse human settlement in an environment not conducive to housing significant populations.
Notable architects influencing skyline
Use of skylines in media
Skylines are sometimes used as backgrounds for movies, television shows, news websites, and in other forms of media.
Subjective ranking of skylines
Several services rank skylines based on their own subjective criteria. Emporis is one such service, which uses height and other data to give point values to buildings and add them together for skylines.
- "Moving Uptown". New York Public Library. Archived from the original on 2014-12-29.
When Charles Graham's view of New York was published, the new term used in the title, "sky line," caught on immediately.
- Paul D. Spreiregen (1965). Urban Design: The Architecture of Towns and Cities. McGraw-Hill.
- Heath, Tom; Smith, Sandy G.; Lim, Bill (July 2000). "Tall Buildings and the Urban Skyline: The Effect of Visual Complexity on Preferences". Environment and Behavior. 32 (4): 541–556. doi:10.1177/00139160021972658. ISSN 0013-9165.
- McNeill, Donald (February 2005). "Skyscraper geography". Progress Human Geography. 29 (1): 41–55. doi:10.1191/0309132505ph527oa.
geographers have tended to neglect the substantial impact of skyscrapers on urban life.
- Emporis ranking of cities by the visual impact of their skylines
- Attoe, Wayne (1981). Skylines: understanding and molding urban silhouettes. Wiley. ISBN 9780471279402.
- Bacon, Edmund (1967). Design of Cities. Thames & Hudson. ISBN 0-14-004236-9.
- Lim, Bill; Heath, Tom (1993). Hayman H., ed. "What is skyline: a quantitative approach". Architectural science: past, present and future, Proceedings of the Conference of the Australian and New Zealand Architectural Science Association. Sydney: University of Sydney: 23–32.
- Ford, Larry R. (1976). "The urban skyline as a city classification system". Journal of Geography. Taylor & Francis. 75 (3): 154–164. doi:10.1080/00221347608980594.
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