How many jackscrews does it take to raise a building?
From Business Problem Topology comes Innovation!
In the mid 19th century, the people of Chicago were subjected to the putrid smell of animal and human dung lining the streets. There were no sewer systems back then so the excrement just laid in the streets. Needless to say, it became a nuisance and quite the health hazard.
Ellis Chesbrough, an engineer and an expert in Business Problem Topology, was able to make room for an extensive sewer system and clean up the city.
After concluding that digging under the city was useless as the land was too flat to allow for proper pipe drainage, he decided the only other option was to lift the entire city to make room for an underground sewer system.
Sounds crazy, right?
He used a solution from the railroad industry. They used jackscrews to lift trains on and off the tracks and he applied it to his own problem. Chesbrough hypothesized that the jackscrew could also be used to lift buildings. And he was right!
Over the next 20 years, buildings were lifted off the ground. Sidewalks and streets were raised, drainage pipes were installed and new foundations were laid underneath them. The Tremont House, one of the city’s most renowned hotels, was raised while people were still going about their business on the inside. In 1860, men lifted an entire city block using over 6000 jackscrews.
Chesbrough built the first comprehensive sewer system of any major American city all because he understood Business Problem Topology.
Do you have a problem you can’t solve? Maybe its time you look at another industry with a similar problem.
Morty Silber, CEO
Mad Strategies Inc.
a Wizard of Ads Partner