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  #1  
Old Posted Apr 1, 2007, 6:14 AM
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Re: What Building in your city was Demolished, and should not have been?

I'm sure every city has at least one building demolished, that drove preservationist, or even the public nuts. I would have loved to have seen this one survive as a fixture on the Buffalo Skyline. At 409 Feet, in 1901, there could not have been many taller. If anyone knows why it went by the way of the wrecking ball, do tell. Also, How about posting some pictures if you can, of other buildings in your city that "bit the dust".


Why was this building torn down?






Last edited by Halovet; Apr 1, 2007 at 6:30 AM.
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  #2  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2007, 12:33 AM
SuburbanNation SuburbanNation is offline
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Century Building, downtown St. Louis...


photo reproduced without permission from builtstlouis.com

demo'd the middle of the present decade:

for parking...

Last edited by SuburbanNation; Apr 4, 2007 at 12:39 AM.
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  #3  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2007, 1:32 AM
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Syria Mosque... demo'd for parking... the list of legendary acts who played there is mind-boggling



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  #4  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2007, 2:25 AM
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Chicago Stock Exchange

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  #5  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2007, 3:06 AM
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In Minneapolis, without a doubt it would be the Metropolitan Building. Otherwise known as the Northwestern National Life Building. It was the first true skyscraper in Minneapolis. It was not demolished for any good reason. It was demolished because it fell into the Gateway District Urban Renewal Project. With that it was not even really in the Gateway District. It was added to the district by a hotel owner that thought the building was ugly and did not want his clients to have to look at such an eyesore from the hotel windows. So even though it was structually sound and almost fully leased. It was demolished. It demolition formed the catalyst for the Minneapolis preservation movement. It demolition was very unpopular at the time with residents of the city. Those in charge were too busy planning the furture of the city and ignored its past. The really odd thing is most of the buiding that replaced the old ones are also gone now themselves. Most barely made it 20 years before they were demolished. Of the new building constructed in the gateway only about a dozen still remain. The district encompassed more than a dozen blocks. So all the renewal did was destroy a good part of our history. Much of the area was run down at the time with no sign of recovery. This did happen during the early "white flight" years, so it did make sense for the city to clean up it worst area. But this building had no right or reason to be demolished. The sight sat as a parking lot for several years until a benign little low rise took up the site. The good news is the hotel that would have had the "disgusting view", only was open for20 years and was quickly demolished after the hotel closed its doors. Unfortunately it has since been the site of the largest parking lot in dt Minneapolis now.
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  #6  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2007, 3:31 AM
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Christ, that is a crime! Whoever decided to knock that down should be shot.
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  #7  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2007, 3:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Halovet View Post
I'm sure every city has at least one building demolished, that drove preservationist, or even the public nuts. I would have loved to have seen this one survive as a fixture on the Buffalo Skyline. At 409 Feet, in 1901, there could not have been many taller. If anyone knows why it went by the way of the wrecking ball, do tell. Also, How about posting some pictures if you can, of other buildings in your city that "bit the dust".


Why was this building torn down?






This building was never meant to be saved. It was part of the 1901 World's Fair in Buffalo called the Pan American Expo. The building and all the others at the fair were made of plaster and wood. Most buildings at these kinds of fairs were torn down. The sole survivors from Buffalo's fair are the Albright Knox Gallery and the Historical Museum. The Electric Building downtown is loosely modeled on this tower. Prez McKinley was shot dead at this fair.

The real building that should not have been torn down in Buffalo is this one. One of the most important buildings in architectural history:



http://images.google.com/imgres?imgu...%3Den%26sa%3DG
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  #8  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2007, 3:46 AM
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Steel beat me to it... btw here is a pic of the current Electric Building in Buffalo... inspired by the Pan Am fake building
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  #9  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2007, 3:52 AM
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By the way Thomas Edison took some movies of that Buffalo tower. They are very interesting. You can see them at the Library of Congress web site. You can also see McKinley's Buffalo funeral movie there too.
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  #10  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2007, 3:59 AM
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If that building had been constructed in the past 30 years, it would have been ostracized for not being built to the street and with ground level retail.
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  #11  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2007, 4:06 AM
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For Birmingham:



It's not the largest demolition to have taken in the city, but what a crime to have lost this building...
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  #12  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2007, 5:16 AM
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Houston has lost so MUCH and to this day continues to lose older buildings. Right now, the River Oaks Theater (still a movie house), West Gray Shopping Center, and Alabama Theater are all in danger to make way for more typical crap (a Barnes and Noble, parking garages, expanded strip centers). Last year, the 10 story hotel across the street from Minute Maid Park came down in the middle of the night. It is a surface parking lot now (as if downtown didn't have enough already). BUT, here's a look at what I truly miss;

Old City Hall and Market Place facing Market Square


The Rossonian Apartments


The Medical Arts Building (still surface parking downtown some 20 years after it came down)


Harris County Courthouse


original Houston High School in Midtown area


The Shamrock Hotel came down in the med center. It is still surface parking 20 years later.
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  #13  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2007, 4:30 PM
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I'm really not sure where to begin for Chicago. A recent loss was indeed the Stock Exchange.

In fact if I started trying to list and document all the destroyed gems, I'd tear up, and I'm not in the mood for that right now. Literally dozens, if not hundreds. Theatres, skyscrapers, office blocks, apartment blocks, houses, transportation, everything.
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  #14  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2007, 4:48 PM
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Any New Yorker will tell you our greatest loss was the Singer Building. Most of us here on the site weren't around to see it in person. When we see pictures, however, we know that out of all the buildings brought down in and around the 1960's that Singer is the lowest blow of all.
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  #15  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2007, 5:47 PM
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For Detroit there are many candidates such as the late great Hudsons department store but one of the most recent and senseless was the destruction of the Statler Hotel.

This hotel when it opened in 1915 was one of the most advanced in the world at the time with bathrooms for each of its 800 guest rooms (later expanded to 1000 rooms) and was the first hotel to have air conditioning (installed in 1937).


The hotel, which closed in 1975, was demolished in 2005 in an attempt to prevent Superbowl visitors in 2006 from seeing an abandond building (is if there are not others!). Now as the downtown revitalizes, the hotel could have been adapted to a new use such as condos.
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  #16  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2007, 6:19 PM
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There's another thread on this issue:

http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/showthread.php?t=120874
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  #17  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2007, 11:05 PM
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whoa.. .I didn't realize Houston had so many gems that were destroyed
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  #18  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2007, 11:14 PM
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The Singer Building- tallest in the city from 1908-1909. It was demolished in 1968 because the floor plates were too small. It was demolished to make way for One Liberty Plaza. While I like international style, buildings like OLP are a dime a dozen and the Singer was truly unique.
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  #19  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2007, 11:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UrbanSophist View Post
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Wow what a shame.

Facts

Height (struct.) 57 m 186 ft
Floors (OG) 13
Construction end 1894


- The eminent architectural photographer Richard Nickel died while recording the building's demolition, when part of the structure collapsed on him. "Great architecture has only two natural enemies: water and stupid men."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Nickel

- The design, by architect Louis Sullivan [just look at the entry arch], featured a strong cornice, projecting window bays, and an elaborately carved entrance archway.

- The stenciled trading room was one of the architect's masterworks, and has been relocated to the Art Institute of Chicago.

- The arch from the main entrance has also been preserved, and stands outside the Art Institute at Columbus & Monroe.

- One of the classic works of early skyscraper design, with a highly textured and open façade.
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Last edited by bnk; Apr 5, 2007 at 2:50 PM.
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  #20  
Old Posted Apr 5, 2007, 1:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tackledspoon View Post

The Singer Building- tallest in the city from 1908-1909. It was demolished in 1968 because the floor plates were too small. It was demolished to make way for One Liberty Plaza. While I like international style, buildings like OLP are a dime a dozen and the Singer was truly unique.

The Singer Building was the tallest building in the world when built, and the tallest ever demolished upto that time!!!
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