The building's interior is five feet, two inches wide and the exterior is five feet, ten inches wide.
The property, once 36 feet wide, lost 30 feet in 1903 when the City of Pittsburgh widened Diamond Way, today's Forbes Avenue.
In 1907, banking magnate Andrew Mellon bought the parcel of land hoping that the City would later widen the sidewalks giving him a profit on his investment.
Mellon sold the property in 1918 to Louis Hendel who built the three story building.
The ground floor was once a luncheon counter/diner in the 1950s, and even a cookie stand.
In 1998, Mayor Tom Murphy threatened to seize the property using eminent domain while developing the Pittsburgh Downtown Plan (PDP) in the Fifth-Firbes Corridor. The building escaped the wrecking ball.
In 2003, a group headed by architect Al Kovacik began to contest the recognition that the Sam Kee Building enjoys as the world's skinniest building, saying the claim is wrong and seeks vindication.
The 24 windows of the upper two floors regularly display public art, illuminated at night, by local artists.
The back of the building stands against the Roberts Building at 429 Wood Street, which until January 1998 housed the prominent John M. Roberts & Son jewelers. The main floor is now a 7-Eleven store.
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