‘Eighth natural wonder of the world’ may have been rediscovered after 131 years

June 14, 2017 by  
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131 years ago, the eighth natural wonder of the world was thought to be lost in a volcanic eruption . The exact fate of the Pink and White Terraces at Lake Rotomahana in New Zealand was unknown, but now two researchers think the terraces may actually have survived, and could even be excavated to dazzle the world once again. During the mid-1800’s, visitors from around the planet came to view the Pink and White Terraces, pools cascading down into Lake Rotomahana. But in 1886, nearby Mount Tarawera erupted, releasing around as much energy as the biggest nuclear weapon ever detonated. Research hinted the terraces were either destroyed or pushed down into the depths of the lake. But independent researchers Rex Bunn and Dr. Sascha Nolden of the Alexander Turnbull Library think otherwise; according to them, the terraces may be preserved just 32 to 49 feet under the surface beneath mud and ash. Related: Scientists find evidence of lost continent beneath Mauritius Bunn told The Guardian the government of the 1800’s never surveyed the area, so we don’t know the exact longitude and latitude of the terraces. But the two researchers drew on unpublished 1859 survey data from 19th century geologist Ferdinand von Hochstetter to determine the German-Austrian’s location as he made his field notes to determine where the famed terraces might be today. They think the Pink and White Terraces may be in reasonable condition, able to be restored. Now they hope to begin exploring the site, if they can clinch funding. Bunn told The Guardian, “We want to undertake this work in the public interest. And I have been closely liaising with the ancestral owners of the land, the Tuhourangi Tribal Authority, and they are supportive and delighted with the work.” Nolden and Bunn aren’t the first researchers to think they’ve rediscovered the terraces. GNS Science New Zealand said in 2016 following five years of research, an international team came to the conclusion much of the terraces had been destroyed. But Bunn said he’s talked with GNS and that their conclusions may have rested on 130 years of incorrect cartographical information. Bunn and Nolden’s research was published online this month by the Journal of the Royal Society of New Zealand . Via The Guardian and IFLScience Images via Wikimedia Commons ( 1 , 2 )

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‘Eighth natural wonder of the world’ may have been rediscovered after 131 years

Detroit debuts brand new 20,000-square-foot pedestrian plaza

June 14, 2017 by  
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Detroit , Michigan is one of the most dangerous cities in the United States for pedestrians . But the city is taking one step to overcome that with the recent opening of a new plaza by the iconic Spirit of Detroit statue. The 20,000 square foot civic square offers space for live performances and art displays, and will host food trucks . The Spirit of Detroit Plaza takes over one block of Woodward Avenue between Jefferson Avenue and Larned Street in front of the statue, which has adorned the area since 1958. The space boasts tables and chairs, colorful paintings on the sidewalk, lights, and planters. It will go through a 90-day trial this summer to see how pedestrians and traffic respond to the newly-created area. Related: America’s first urban ‘agrihood’ feeds 2,000 households for free Mayor Mike Duggan said in a statement, “Every world-class city has a central plaza where people can gather and celebrate its civic history, and in front of the Spirit of Detroit is the perfect place for all Detroiters to have the opportunity. We are committed to a Detroit that’s open and accessible to all and this new plaza has been envisioned to celebrate all of the diversities that come together to make us a great city.” Detroit said the new plaza offers “a more direct pedestrian link between Downtown and the Detroit Waterfront.” Vehicles will be redirected onto other nearby streets. The city also said the plaza’s presence could help slash the potential for crashes. The plaza helps simplify an intersection and that fact along with adjusted area traffic signals could even reduce delays on Jefferson Avenue. If the trial goes well, city agencies and the mayor aim to make the plaza permanent. City Planning Director Maurice Cox described the Spirit of Detroit Plaza as a “key piece in making a more vibrant, walkable, diverse downtown.” He appears to have high hopes for the plaza, saying in a statement, “By simplifying the downtown grid and consolidating traffic flow, we are creating a more inviting street and safer pedestrian crossings. And of course, if something changes or the design doesn’t work as well as we expect, we can adjust it or even restore its original design. We expect this will reset expectations for what is possible on neighborhood streets across the city.” Via Curbed Detroit and the City of Detroit Images via Janette Sadik-Khan on Twitter , City of Detroit , and City of Detroit on Twitter

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Detroit debuts brand new 20,000-square-foot pedestrian plaza

6 heart-shaped natural wonders to make your lover swoon

February 13, 2015 by  
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Read the rest of 6 heart-shaped natural wonders to make your lover swoon Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Calanca Mountain Trail , Chimei , Double Heart Stone Weir , Great Barrier Reef , Hardy Reef , Heart Reef , Heart Rock Maui , heart shaped natural wonders , heart shaped wonders , Isla Corazon , Lac Calvaresc , Lagh Calvaresc , Lake Calvaresc , Mascardi Lake , Nakele Blow Hole , natural wonders , Overland Canyon Tours , Twin Heart Stone Weir , X Canyon

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6 heart-shaped natural wonders to make your lover swoon

10 of the World’s Most Dazzling Natural Hot Springs (Slideshow)

August 8, 2011 by  
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Photo: Wikimedia Commons The same geothermal heat that can help you reduce your electricity bill is responsible for some of the world’s most stunning natural wonders: Hot springs. When hot water bubbles up through the Earth’s crust, the resulting pools are soothing, mineral-rich springs that have been used for medical, therapeutic, and spa treatments for centuries — and also leave behind min… Read the full story on TreeHugger

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10 of the World’s Most Dazzling Natural Hot Springs (Slideshow)

Stunning Underwater Plants on the Ocean Floor (Slideshow)

August 19, 2010 by  
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The ocean is full of uncharted territory — and of breathtaking natural wonders that look like they’d be more at home on Pandora than in the blue depths just off the beach where you spent your summer vacation. These stunning underwater plants offer an ethereal beauty hard to reproduce on land

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Stunning Underwater Plants on the Ocean Floor (Slideshow)

Extinct Toads to Return Home

August 19, 2010 by  
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Image credit: Tim Herman/ IUCN The Kinhansi spray toad was first discovered in 1996 when it’s tiny five-acre habitat in Tanzania was surveyed for inclusion in massive hydro-electric dam project.

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Extinct Toads to Return Home

Another Reason Modern Green Prefab Is Tough: Construction Financing

August 19, 2010 by  
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Installing prefab in Sweden. Photo credit: Haninge I was intrigued by a recent post from prefabber Blu Homes about construction financing. They wrote: “The homeowner must procure construction financing – a short term, interest only loan that will give the homeowner the funds to pay Blu and the site contractor the costs of construction.

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Another Reason Modern Green Prefab Is Tough: Construction Financing

Photographer David Liittschwager Documents Amazing Biodiversity Found in ‘One Cubic Foot’

March 27, 2010 by  
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A sampling of the species found around a coral reef in French Polynesia. Photo by David Liittschwager via National Geographic . Even a small patch of dirt in the middle of a big city can be full of natural wonders — if you look closely enough

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Photographer David Liittschwager Documents Amazing Biodiversity Found in ‘One Cubic Foot’

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