Verizon Building, New York Telephone Company
Structure in general
art deco / art moderne
- For decades since construction the building was known to be as the northwesternmost skyscraper in Downtown.
- The viewer is constantly presented with two conflicting images of the tower: an obliquely-angled mass and a steel-supported facade with angles sharp as paper creases.
- The building occupies an entire rhomboid-shaped block, and was built to accommodate office space for more than 5,000 workers.
- The lobby floor is covered with bronze plates depicting the construction of New York's telephone network, and the ceiling has frescoes with the theme of the history of communication.
- A neo-Romanesque vaulted arcade runs the whole length of the Vesey Street side.
- The entrances are decorated with bronze engravings with a main theme of bells, the symbol of the Bell Telephone Company.
- Drawing from Saarinen's Chicago Tribune competition entry, the brick-clad building is topped with a short, sturdy tower, with the vertical piers ending on "battlements" on top and with sculptural ornaments on the setbacks.
- The massive form with floors of 4,830 m² without any light courts was possible because the telephone installations didn't require natural light.
- The form of the building was decided upon after studies of relation between land cost and construction cost, a 32-storey design was chosen as the most economical.
- The 152-meter building is considered to be the first Art Deco skyscraper and its designers were also awarded the Architectural League of New York's gold medal of honor for 1927 for fine expression of the new industrial age.
- The lobby goes through the middle of the building from Washington to West Streets, with each entrance having its own address (Washington Street is nowadays closed to motor traffic and paved).
- Was partly damaged due to the Sept. 2001 terrorist attacks. The nearby World Trade Center towers collapsed.
- When the foundations of this building were laid, remainders of early Dutch settlers were found including an oak keel of a whaler.
- In Manhattan's early history the location of this building used to be under water of the river Hudson.
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140 West Street
140 West Street
Also recorded for this building:
Client, General contractor, Facade supplier
Features & Amenities
- City landmark