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Edward
January 6th, 2003, 11:49 PM
I took a picture of ESB on the way to QNS MoMA; I added 7 old pictures to the thread.



Empire State Building (http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/default.htm) at the end of 47th Avenue in Queens (http://www.wirednewyork.com/queens/default.htm). 5 January 2003.

http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/images/esb_queens_47th_5jan03.jpg



Empire State Building (http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/default.htm) and Schwartz Chemical Factory in Queens West (http://www.wirednewyork.com/queens/queens_west/default.htm). 23 February 2002.

http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/images/empire_state_building_schwartz_chemical_queens_23f eb02.jpg



The view of Empire State Building (http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/default.htm) from Queens West (http://www.wirednewyork.com/queens/queens_west/default.htm). 23 February 2002.

http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/images/empire_state_building_queens_west_23feb02.jpg



The view on Queens West (http://www.wirednewyork.com/queens/queens_west/default.htm) development and Empire State Building (http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/default.htm) from the Long Island Expressway.

http://www.wirednewyork.com/queens/avalon_riverview/images/avalon_riverview_lie.jpg



The view of Empire State Building (http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/default.htm) from across Hudson River, from Lincoln Harbor.

http://www.wirednewyork.com/manhattan/images/lincoln_harbor_27oct02.jpg



The view of Manhattan from Grand Ferry Park (http://www.wirednewyork.com/parks/grand_ferry_park/default.htm) with Empire State Building (http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/default.htm).

http://www.wirednewyork.com/parks/grand_ferry_park/images/grand_ferry_park_view_empire_3march02.jpg



Newtown Creek in Queens and Empire State Building (http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/default.htm). 3 March 2002.

http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/images/newtown_creek_night_3march02.jpg



The view of Empire State Building (http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/default.htm) from World Trade Center (http://www.wirednewyork.com/wtc/default.htm) Observatory.

http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/images/empire_state_building_wtc.jpg

amigo32
January 7th, 2003, 12:22 AM
:) :) *That last picture was a nice touch.

JerzDevl2000
January 7th, 2003, 12:29 AM
Edward, great pics. I haven't been on the forum that long, so these are all new to me. Thought I'd toss out my thoughts on a few pics!

#1) I love cloudy days like this! To me, the one that screams out "Gotham" the most - having the ESB line up with the street didn't hurt

#4) Nice shot of Queens West. I'm guessing the building u/c will be about as tall as citylights when completed.

#5) You can see the new 425 5th and the Pennmark apartment towers in this shot. I haven't been this way in ages, but the new additions are not that inspiring

#6) What building is that u/c on the far right?

#8) Very nice looking, but sad shot, in my opinion. I hadn't been up there since the late 80's. I hope that I can take my kids someday up this high in lower Manhattan and point out all the buildings to them....

amigo32
January 7th, 2003, 06:55 AM
Sad shot, maybe, but I like the collage. * I think that it is a fitting bookend. *I will never forget! *Why should we forget?

NYguy
January 7th, 2003, 10:46 AM
Still the king, tallest or not....

TLOZ Link5
January 7th, 2003, 05:59 PM
That last photo is the same as the photo link to Wired New York home. *But still, it's nice to see it larger and more detailed. *Thanks, Edward ;)

It must have been taken shortly before 9/11...Bear Sterns was either complete or very close to completion.

chris
January 7th, 2003, 07:05 PM
That second to the last photo, taken at night is quite nice, very Gotham.

That last photo is sad... and the blue face on the billboard over to the right is creepy!

Ptarmigan
January 26th, 2003, 10:28 PM
Different viewpoints of the Empire State Building. Its interesting to see ESB from the freeway in Queens. The last photo is sad :(, because World Trade Center is gone now.

TLOZ Link5
January 26th, 2003, 11:01 PM
I agree, Ptar. *That last photo really makes me regret having never gone to the top of the WTC.

...well I went once, about seven years ago. *I was about ten, so I don't remember much, other than it was a cloudy day and getting a bad sense of vertigo when I looked out an 80th floor window.

And then there were those displays above the elevator door inside the car which showed funny stick figures looking squashed or elongated. *It was supposed to simulate how people feel as the elevator went up or down.

JCDJ
January 27th, 2003, 12:55 AM
Those're great pictures. How do you post pictures anyhow?

It's always I'm not sure how to describe it, different, to see a picture of or from the WTC. I remember a few months ago I saw a website that used to have a web cam on the observation deck of the WTC. It wasn't updated for a long time and hadn't mentioned anything about Sept.11, from what I can remember. The screen of the webcam was blank.

Edward
December 27th, 2003, 09:15 PM
A repeat of the recent post: The Empire State Building (http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/default.htm) in blue and green colors on the occasion of 110th Anniversary of the National Council of Jewish Women. The view from the 64th floor of the GE Building (http://www.wirednewyork.com/skyscrapers/ge/default.htm). 8 December 2003.

http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/images/empire_state_ge_8dec03.jpg (http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/default.htm)



The Empire State (http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/default.htm) in Christmas colors, with Hudson River Park waterfront and Perry West condominiums (http://www.wirednewyork.com/real_estate/perry_west/default.htm).

http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/images/empire_state_perry_west_27dec03.jpg (http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/default.htm)

NYguy
December 28th, 2003, 09:57 AM
Perfect shot of the building...


http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/images/esb_queens_47th_5jan03.jpg

MidnightRambler
December 30th, 2003, 12:35 AM
best. building. ever.

Liz L
December 31st, 2003, 12:28 AM
Thanks for the great pics!

She's definitely one of the finest - takes to the sky like a rocket, every inch proud and soaring...

And she sure does put that "Freedom Tower" (and most of the other plans for Ground Zero) to shame....

Art Deco rules! :D

Gulcrapek
January 2nd, 2004, 01:46 PM
That's an interesting shot, reminds me a little of a Dutch jagged street grid or something with the centerpiece sandwiched... if that made sense.

NYguy
January 2nd, 2004, 07:12 PM
More Empire State...


http://www.pbase.com/image/24732007/large.jpg


http://www.pbase.com/image/24732016/large.jpg


http://www.pbase.com/image/24732021/large.jpg


http://www.pbase.com/image/24732019/large.jpg


http://www.pbase.com/image/24732022/large.jpg

Edward
January 3rd, 2004, 10:57 PM
The Empire State Building (http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/default.htm) in Christmas colors, in Little Italy.

http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/images/esb_little_italy_3jan04.jpg (http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/default.htm)

emmeka
January 4th, 2004, 06:49 AM
Whoever took this photo went there around the same time as my last visit to the towers in feb/march 2001

http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/images/empire_state_building_wtc.jpg

emmeka
January 4th, 2004, 06:51 AM
no sorry. I correct myself. because bear sterns isnt finished in that photo so it might be around december 2000 when that was taken.

Edward
January 4th, 2004, 12:06 PM
No need to guess, emmeka, the date is 12 October 2000.

NoyokA
February 6th, 2004, 06:30 PM
http://e.1asphost.com/guide498/ESB.html

BigMac
February 6th, 2004, 07:37 PM
Yahoo! News

February 3, 2004

Austrians Win Empire State Building Run

By VERENA DOBNIK, Associated Press Writer

NEW YORK - Austrians ruled the Empire State Building on Tuesday, scampering 86 flights to the observation deck to capture the annual run up the Manhattan skyscraper.

Rudolf Reitberger and Andrea Mayr won the men's and women's divisions in a race in which a 92-year-old Italian man who trains on Mount Etna was among the competitors.

Reitberger and Mayr are friends from Julbach, Austria, and train together for the Empire State Building Run-Up. Reitberger covered the 1,576 steps in 10 minutes, 37 seconds. Mayr set the women's course record at 12:08, breaking the previous mark of 12:19 set in 1996 by American Belinda Soszyn.

Finishing second and third among the men were Ran and Dan Alterman, identical twins from Israel.

A total of 117 men and women from 11 countries took part in the trek organized by New York Road Runners.

Last year's champ, Paul Crake of Australia, did not compete. The 2003 female champion returned with her new husband.

Cindy Moll-Harris of Indianapolis placed second in 13:26 — 20 seconds more than last year. Her husband, James Harris, finished 23rd among the men at 13:53.

Chico Scimone prepares for the Empire State climb by training on volcanic Mount Etna in Sicily. He scaled the Manhattan skyscraper for the 14th time, finishing in 43:25, last among the 84 men.

In Sicily, he walks up Mount Etna five days a week before going to work as a lounge pianist.

"A lot of people ask me, do you see a doctor?" he said. "I have one checkup a year: If I get to the top of the Empire State Building, I'm OK."

On top of the building, he swept up his 19-month-old great granddaughter, Isabella Jameson, and greeted his granddaughter, Kathleen Jameson, and his daughter, Pat Peters, all of Norristown, Pa.

For Kyle Restina, 43, of Scotia, the race proved she's in shape after losing 135 pounds. Two years ago, she weighed 270.

"I'm a little sweaty," she said by phone after finishing in 18:02. "But I can breathe and I can talk."

Copyright 2004 Yahoo! Inc.

NoyokA
June 11th, 2004, 04:16 PM
http://galleries.soaringtowers.org/albums/Stern/EmpireState.jpg

krulltime
June 11th, 2004, 04:25 PM
Majestic!

Keep it coming! 8)

NoyokA
June 11th, 2004, 04:26 PM
Encore.

http://galleries.soaringtowers.org/albums/Stern/ESB3.jpg

krulltime
June 11th, 2004, 05:13 PM
After watching 'The Day After Tomorrow' (lame skript but great special effects) I almost cry when the Empire State froze to death! :cry:

USSManhattan
June 11th, 2004, 06:59 PM
Eh, she only got a little freezer burnt. Just give her a good blow-drying and a few new windows and she'll be fine. :wink:

Lemonsoda
June 12th, 2004, 07:25 AM
http://www.wagna.net/boardy/2004/ESB_at_night_01.JPG

View from the rooftop bar at the Hotel La Quinta. A magical building.

krulltime
June 12th, 2004, 10:23 AM
:shock: uh...She speaks in misterious ways...

Great night shot!

Gulcrapek
June 12th, 2004, 12:54 PM
That's awesome...

Kris
June 24th, 2004, 02:36 AM
http://www.rion.nu/v5/archive/000516.php

cityskyscrapers
June 24th, 2004, 04:54 PM
Great views of ESB. Really enjoyed looking at this series. Thanks!

NYatKNIGHT
June 29th, 2004, 11:34 AM
http://galleries.soaringtowers.org/albums/NYatKNIGHT/Empire_State.sized.jpg

krulltime
June 29th, 2004, 05:55 PM
The Empire Estate building still ruling the sky:

http://www.pbase.com/image/30747229.jpg

http://www.pbase.com/image/30747219.jpg

Johnnyboy
June 29th, 2004, 06:26 PM
Defenetly the greatest skyscraper ever made. It must of had been such an awsome seight for those who got to see such a thing in the 30's after its completion. Even modern buildings still can't pass its class. Pobably the freedom tower won't pass its beauty as well.
:shock:

IF THERE ARE ANY OPINIONS REGUARDING WHAT I HAD JUST POASTED, PLEASE REPLY. THANKIU. :)

PHLguy
June 29th, 2004, 10:50 PM
Wow that building is tall :)

Bob
July 4th, 2004, 10:48 PM
One of the many distinguishing characteristics of the Empire State Building is its immense scale. The thing is and remains an enormous, omnipresent structure that demands to be seen. It was the World Trade Center of its day, and even when the World Trade Center was up, the Empire State Building was never second-fiddle. These giants of the skyline ruled.

Ladies & gents, what New York City needs is another mega-building. If giants can be built in China, they can be built HERE. And, if you build it, they will come, just as they did to the "Empty" State Building.

BrooklynRider
July 7th, 2004, 11:01 AM
Given the latest design of "Freedom Tower", the top half of it represents an emptiness that can never be filled.

ManhattanKnight
July 21st, 2004, 02:52 PM
I recently came upon an online reprint of a 1967 article that may be of interest to ESB devotees: BROADCAST ANTENNAS ON THE EMPIRE STATE BUILDING http://www.lnl.com/esbantennas.htm

This is the article's penultimate paragraph:

The world's most unusual antenna site may not exist much longer. Recently, the Port of New York Authority has been planning the construction of twin 110-story skyscrapers in Lower Manhattan. Independent studies by Alford Manufacturing Co, and Jansky and Bailey have shown that the proposed towers would cause ghosting to some viewers watching some of the TV stations presently on the Empire State Building. Several solutions to the program have been advanced, one being to relocate antennas from Empire State to the new. taller structures (to be known as the World Trade Center).


http://www.lnl.com/images/empire/esb6.jpg

thomasjfletcher
July 21st, 2004, 06:33 PM
HARD TO RESIST.......

http://www.nyc-architecture.com/MID/MID73K.jpg

http://www.nyc-architecture.com/MID/MID073-10.jpg

http://www.nyc-architecture.com/MID/MID073-12.jpg

http://www.nyc-architecture.com/MID/MID073-17.jpg

http://www.nyc-architecture.com/MID/MID073-13.jpg

http://www.nyc-architecture.com/MID/MID073-78.jpg

http://www.nyc-architecture.com/MID/MID073-71.jpg
in the lobby...

http://www.nyc-architecture.com/MID/MID073-48.jpg

http://www.nyc-architecture.com/MID/MID073.htm

ManhattanKnight
August 29th, 2004, 06:34 PM
This afternoon
http://tinypic.com/3s9iv

Johnnyboy
August 30th, 2004, 10:12 AM
from were did u take such an exelent picture?

yyy
September 5th, 2004, 10:00 AM
Encore.

http://galleries.soaringtowers.org/albums/Stern/ESB3.jpg

Stern - I think this picture is AMAZING :D I really like it. Can I please set it as my wallpaper and distorbute a screenshot of my desktop with it?
I want to show my desktop in a forum and I want to show it with that picture as a wallaper. Can I please do it?

NoyokA
September 5th, 2004, 10:51 AM
Sure, please be my guest.

yyy
September 5th, 2004, 01:04 PM
Thank you very very much :D This image looks so great on my desktop :) Great picture !

asdf
September 5th, 2004, 05:13 PM
How about some interior shots?

http://t101.000k.net/esb/

yyy
September 5th, 2004, 05:51 PM
I mostly like pictures of the skyscraper itself. But the best pictures are those which have high resolution. The higer resolution, the more realistic picture :D

ThetaBurst
October 31st, 2004, 08:02 AM
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v482/mintjulep/Dscn1013.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v482/mintjulep/Dscn9913.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v482/mintjulep/Dscn1007.jpg

dtolman
November 2nd, 2004, 12:36 PM
Fantastic shots! I love the clouds/fogs swirling around it in the nighttime photos!

ThetaBurst
November 4th, 2004, 07:35 AM
Thanks!

I work in the building and, interesting to note, they started working on the restrooms on our floor last April. Seven months later, they're nowhere near finished.

Of course, the entire building only took 11 months to construct, over 70 years ago!!!

TonyO
December 8th, 2004, 05:47 PM
http://graphics.nytimes.com/nytstore/images/products/photos/newyork/buildings/NSAPMI68-_large.jpg

Jasonik
December 8th, 2004, 05:58 PM
Wow!

Eugenius
December 8th, 2004, 06:26 PM
That is an amazing angle!

TLOZ Link5
December 8th, 2004, 07:53 PM
Dizzy.

ZippyTheChimp
January 13th, 2005, 01:05 PM
finally re-visited the Empire State Building; as the other deck I used to visit was destroyed. The view is still breathtaking; as is the architecture. The small 86th Floor Observatory is so crowded because it wasn't built for so many visitors. The only problem I had was with my camcorder. It seems the strong magnetic fields from all those antennas can cause havoc with electronics. My camera was going on and off. My old 35mm SLR worked fine. She still is the finest looking building in my opinion. To the management's credit, they froze costs to pre 9-11 levels for the networks that had to return to the antenna on the Empire State. Also, can you think of any other skyscraper that has a tower lighting schedule based on seasons, holidays or current events?


The Metropolitan Life Tower installed lnew lighting (http://forums.wirednewyork.com/viewtopic.php?t=1129&highlight=met+life+lighting) last year. I don't know what the schedule is.

Just Rich
January 17th, 2005, 03:38 PM
A couple of cool cloudy shots from the web cam.

http://homepage.mac.com/rigrij/.Pictures/New%20York%20Stuff/esb_clouds.jpg
http://homepage.mac.com/rigrij/.Pictures/New%20York%20Stuff/esb_clouds2.jpg

FRED
January 18th, 2005, 07:42 PM
http://skyscraperpage.com/gallery/data/532/1856img_1005_1__1_.jpg

http://skyscraperpage.com/gallery/data/532/1856img_1309c.jpg

http://skyscraperpage.com/gallery/data/532/1856img_1287c.jpg

krulltime
January 20th, 2005, 12:31 PM
http://www.therealdeal.net/breaking_news/January/images/1106145982.jpg
Empire State Building

Empire State Building to Update Its Tourist Experience

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2005/01/19/business/prop.span.jpg
The owners and managers of the Empire State Building worked with BRC Imagination Arts to devise upgrades for waiting areas.


By JOHN HOLUSHA
Published: January 19, 2005

It is not easy to change a building that is so famous that mail from around the world finds its way to "the Empire State Building" without a city or country in the address.

But the managers of the building have decided that, landmark or not, it is time to update some aspects of the building at 350 Fifth Avenue so that tourists have a better time when they visit.

The view, just about everyone agrees, is terrific from the 86th-floor observation deck. But visitors are often treated more like cattle than people, forced to wait in long lines in a hot basement to board the elevators to the top floor.

That will begin to change this spring. The waiting areas will be transformed with additional security checkpoints and ticket windows to minimize delays and add a dash of entertainment for those who wait.

The managers have hired BRC Imagination Arts which has extensive experience in theme park and museum design, to create tourist-friendly attractions within the building, and the two parties recently held a daylong meeting to produce specific plans.

Among other things, it was decided that starting in the spring, visitors will not be sent to the basement but will instead go up an escalator to a waiting area on the air-conditioned second floor. Not much can be done about the carrying capacity of the elevators to the 80th floor, so the waiting will remain, but in an area that offers entertainment focusing on the building's history and its connections with celebrities. Technology that projects images on the floor in a darkened room will try to give visitors the illusion that they are standing on a girder 50 stories high during the construction of the building in the 1930's.

The 80th floor is the upper limit of the building's high-speed elevators. There, visitors have to wait for slower elevators to complete the trip to the top, causing a buildup of people in the corridors.

To break up the long lines, the waiting area will be divided into a series of connecting rooms where plasma screens and other visual devices will tell the story of the construction of the building and will show excerpts from films that use it as a backdrop. "The different areas can change an hour wait into six different 10-minute waits," said Bob Rogers, the chairman of BRC.

In 2006, the 80th and 86th floors will also be remodeled, although not much will change on the famous open-air viewing area on the 86th floor. The paneled office of the building's first manager, Alfred E. Smith, the former governor of New York who was the Democratic candidate for president in 1928, is to be incorporated into the 80th-floor holding area, possibly with animated depictions of Mr. Smith.

A gift shop that now interferes with traffic flow on the 86th floor will be moved to the 80th floor as tenants are moved elsewhere and more tourist-oriented retailing is added.

Bathrooms will also be added during the upper-floor renovations, which are planned for January through March, when there are fewer visitors. According to Mr. Rogers, whose company specializes in designing entertainment centers, when a tour bus pulls up to an attraction, finding a bathroom is the matter uppermost on the minds of at least 7 percent of passengers.

Some 3.6 million people visited the Empire State Building last year, and the total has been rising in recent years. Although one visitor wrote on an Internet opinion site that the wait for elevators was equivalent to being in the "seventh level of hell," surveys of visitors to the observatory, conducted last June, indicated that most were pleased with the experience.

"In spite of the lines, 75 percent of visitors rate it as a positive experience," said Anthony E. Malkin, the president of Wien & Malkin, which has day-to-day control of the building. "We want to improve on that."

The building is owned by partnerships led by Peter Malkin, the chairman of Wien & Malkin, who is Anthony's father, and is controlled by a lease held by Mr. Malkin and Leona Helmsley as a result of the role her husband, Harry Helmsley, had in purchasing the building.

Mr. Malkin said the other managers deliberated seriously before deciding to change the building. "We started thinking about this about five years ago, but it took a while to recapture the space on the second floor and to find a designer who could work with us," Mr. Malkin said.

BRC, which is based in Burbank, Calif., has done projects for Disney, General Motors and NASA and designed the Texas State History Museum in Austin and the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield, Ill.

In addition to improving the tourist experience, Mr. Malkin said, the redesign is intended to separate tourists from the 15,000 people who work each day in the building, which has 2.7 million square feet of office space.

The building is one of the few prime tourist destinations that is a major business site, as well. "It's like operating the Statue of Liberty on top of the MetLife Building," Mr. Malkin said. Having tourists in flip-flops and fussy children mixing in the lobby with tenants and their visitors can be a detriment to office leasing, real estate executives said.

In spite of its importance as an office building, the Empire State Building has always been, above all, an attraction. It was for a long time the world's tallest building, built by John J. Raskob, a former executive of General Motors, specifically to be taller than Walter P. Chrysler's building on 42nd Street.

It is 1,250 feet to the tip of the "mooring mast," which was supposed to be an anchoring point for the dirigibles that were once seen as the future of air travel. In fact, updrafts caused by the artificial canyons of Manhattan made such dockings impossible.

The building was constructed with astonishing speed in the early days of the Depression, when labor and materials were readily available, taking just one year and 45 days before the opening on May 1, 1931. During construction, rails were installed on 34th Street to move the steel columns and beams; according to legend, they arrived still warm from mills in Pittsburgh.

Because it opened at a time the economy of the country was contracting, tenants were scarce in the early days and it was frequently referred to as the "Empty State Building." That made the observation deck an important contributor to the building's finances, a situation that continues to this day. The funds go to operate and renovate the building.

In those early days, Mr. Smith used his connections to lure dignitaries, including Winston Churchill, Albert Einstein and aspiring movie actresses, to the observation deck, and photographs of them taking in the sights were widely circulated in newsreels, newspapers and magazines.

Promotions on the observation deck have included mass weddings on Valentine's Day and overnight campouts by scout troops. Some of these have been de-emphasized as security concerns have heightened and tourist traffic increased, but the buildings colored lights have increasingly been used to support various causes. Building officials reported there were 140 special lightings last year, with green lights for St. Patrick's Day, for example, and blue and white for a day celebrating the United Nations.

The building has also been a backdrop to dozens of movies. "King Kong" was the most famous, of course, but others include "An Affair to Remember" and "Sleepless in Seattle."

If they succeed in improving the tourist experience with shorter lines and more entertainment, building officials are hoping to increase tour prices, currently $12 for adults, toward $20. Also under consideration is a V.I.P. tour that would bypass the waiting entirely and visit the currently unused observatory on the 102nd floor.



Copyright 2005 The New York Times Company

Edward
February 7th, 2005, 11:18 PM
The Empire State Building (http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/default.htm) and the GE Building (http://www.wirednewyork.com/skyscrapers/ge/default.htm) at night. The view from Central Park's Reservoir. 7 February 2005.

http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/images/esb_ge.jpg (http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/)

TLOZ Link5
February 8th, 2005, 01:42 PM
The color scheme last night was in observance of Grenada's Independence Day.

Bob
February 8th, 2005, 09:14 PM
GE needs to get in on the action, and reopen the superb observation deck atop 30 Rock. As for ESB, I like the idea of the VIP trip to 102. Neat idea.

NewYorkYankee
February 8th, 2005, 10:06 PM
I thought the GE building was going to re-open its deck?

chris_rgbg
March 3rd, 2005, 04:41 AM
The Top. View from Times Square about 47th Street/Broadway.
http://members.aol.com/christianf0177/15.jpg


View from 34th Street/7th Ave on a rainy Day in December 2004
http://members.aol.com/svschwabelweis/64.jpg

chris

MonCapitan2002
March 3rd, 2005, 01:26 PM
GE needs to get in on the action, and reopen the superb observation deck atop 30 Rock. As for ESB, I like the idea of the VIP trip to 102. Neat idea.
They had an observation deck there? Why did they close it?

ZippyTheChimp
March 3rd, 2005, 03:50 PM
There is a thread on the reopening of the GE observation deck in the old forum:

http://forums.wirednewyork.com/viewtopic.php?t=2009&postdays=0&postorder=asc&star t=0

Edward
March 3rd, 2005, 04:42 PM
There is a thread on the reopening of the GE observation deck in the old forum...


The current thread is at
http://www.wirednewyork.com/forum/showthread.php?t=4238

TLOZ Link5
March 3rd, 2005, 06:44 PM
They had an observation deck there? Why did they close it?

The 102nd floor observatory is much smaller than the main deck on the 86th floor, plus the owners considered it redundant because it didn't offer much more of a view than the main deck didn't already. It's been closed for some time now.

NoyokA
March 3rd, 2005, 06:47 PM
I would imagine the 82nd floor deck would have a better view too, you're already above the rest of the skyline, atleast there you're closer to it.

ManhattanKnight
June 5th, 2005, 04:50 PM
Is the 102nd observatory open? This photo at emporis was taken May 28th 2005 from the 102nd flloor. http://www.emporis.com/en/il/im/?id=366040

I believe that it remains closed to the general public but recall reading of plans to reopen it on a limited basis. I visited it many years ago -- the space is very cramped and the views limited (through tiny windows).

michelle1
June 5th, 2005, 07:46 PM
Law, I heard about July-August??
I like Tower Lights how often they change!
My favorite colors're R,W,B or R,Y,G

BrooklynRider
June 5th, 2005, 11:52 PM
The room is round and small - really like a sky lobby. The views are wonderful, although not open air - but certainly better than the 86th floor. I used to visit with my grandfather. Can you imagine we would be up there alone on a weekday looking out?

expose05
July 7th, 2005, 10:25 PM
how can the esb have 102 floors? Are the any floors in the mooring mast?
Also, When people use to go to the 102 floor how could they get up there. Do you take stairs or an elevator.

BrooklynRider
July 8th, 2005, 01:41 AM
how can the esb have 102 floors? Are the any floors in the mooring mast?
Also, When people use to go to the 102 floor how could they get up there. Do you take stairs or an elevator.

Elevator goes up to a circular room with windows all around. 102nd floor observatory. Breathtaking.

NY_Yankees_1979
July 8th, 2005, 02:06 AM
I have lived in New York my whole life and have never went to the top of any of our skyscrapers. I think I should go up in one, which one has the best views? I'm thinking ESB because it's the tallest, is this true or not?

lofter1
July 8th, 2005, 02:13 AM
I have lived in New York my whole life and have never went to the top of any of our skyscrapers. I think I should go up in one, which one has the best views? I'm thinking ESB because it's the tallest, is this true or not?

For your first time up definitely go to up to the top of the ESB.

And then go again at a different time of day. And again in a different season. It's fantastic -- plus the view all around makes you realize what a little island Manhattan really is.

NY_Yankees_1979
July 8th, 2005, 02:23 AM
For now the Empire State Building has the highest observatory. One World Trade Center will have the highest one when it is completed maybe around 2010. The GE Building, which I am sure you must know what it looks like, is reopening its observatory this fall. Link Here (http://www.wirednewyork.com/forum/showthread.php?t=4238). I think the ESB has the only observatory right now. There is the Rainbow Room in the GE Building. The only thing with the GE Building is it isn't as high as ESB.

NY_Yankees_1979
July 8th, 2005, 02:24 AM
For your first time up definitely go to up to the top of the ESB.

And then go again at a different time of day. And again in a different season. It's fantastic -- plus the view all around makes you realize what a little island Manhattan really is. From my understanding, is the 102nd floor one closed and just the 86th floor one open?

NY_Yankees_1979
July 8th, 2005, 02:25 AM
NY Yankees 1979, how often do you go to Manhattan? Probably about once or twice a month, I don't really like going to Manhattan that much because of all the weird tourists.

pianoman11686
July 8th, 2005, 02:29 AM
I think so. Last time I went up, which was about two years ago, 86th was the highest you could go. The view was still incredible, as nothing comes close to touching that height in the surrounding area. Unobstructed views everywhere. Definitely go on a clear spring or fall day, as summer is always too hazy and winter is, well, too cold to be up there for a long time. I really wish I had been to the top of the WTC, but I never got around to it. I've been to the Rainbow Room, and even though it was on a rainy night, the view of the lights of Midtown mingling with the low clouds was enchanting.

NY_Yankees_1979
July 8th, 2005, 02:34 AM
I think so. Last time I went up, which was about two years ago, 86th was the highest you could go. The view was still incredible, as nothing comes close to touching that height in the surrounding area. Unobstructed views everywhere. Definitely go on a clear spring or fall day, as summer is always too hazy and winter is, well, too cold to be up there for a long time. I really wish I had been to the top of the WTC, but I never got around to it. I've been to the Rainbow Room, and even though it was on a rainy night, the view of the lights of Midtown mingling with the low clouds was enchanting. Which floor is the Rainbow Room in the GE Building?

NY_Yankees_1979
July 8th, 2005, 02:36 AM
Do you know the buildings well? Yeah I know some of them for the most part.

pianoman11686
July 8th, 2005, 02:37 AM
Which floor is the Rainbow Room in the GE Building?
68th or 69th I believe.

NY_Yankees_1979
July 8th, 2005, 02:40 AM
68th or 69th I believe. I might head to ESB tomorrow to get a view of the city just for the heck of it since I don't work tomorrow.

NY_Yankees_1979
July 8th, 2005, 02:50 AM
65th Floor.
http://www.rainbowroom.com/ A 65th floor view wouldn't be bad. I think that the 86th floor view from the ESB would be awesome because not many buildings in the city reach that height, I think only the Chrysler Building does, but I'm also thinking that the Chrysler only has 77 floors but is almost equal to the 86th floor in the ESB, I don't know what I'm thinking.

pianoman11686
July 8th, 2005, 02:54 AM
The difference is, you can't go to the 77th floor of Chrysler. The ESB has the best view in the city. Period. The tallest, the most panoramic, whatever you want to call it. The GE Building is a good second choice (assuming you don't count Chrysler), but until they reopen the observation deck for public access, you have to pay handsomely for a mediocre dinner. Of course, you're paying more for the view than the food.

NY_Yankees_1979
July 8th, 2005, 02:59 AM
I never really understood why the Chrysler didn't have a deck.

NY_Yankees_1979
July 8th, 2005, 03:01 AM
I'm guessing that the 67th floor of the Chrysler Building is one of the top floors before the arched spiral.

pianoman11686
July 8th, 2005, 03:04 AM
I'll say it. I think the Chrysler Building is the most beautiful skyscraper in the world, lack of observation deck notwithstanding.

NY_Yankees_1979
July 8th, 2005, 03:07 AM
I love the Chrysler Building even though the ESB makes it look tiny. It's sad to think that the 67th floor is gutted, they should make it into an observation deck. Also the ESB and Chrysler are the only two buildings in NYC that pass the 1,000 foot mark so I think an observation deck in the Chrysler would be a success.

NY_Yankees_1979
July 8th, 2005, 03:09 AM
And yup you can tell that it is one of the floors in the giant arch.

Alonzo-ny
July 8th, 2005, 03:36 PM
I was wondering if you can get to the 102nd floop observatory to because i've heard from multiple sources you are allowed but of the times ive been there ive not seen the option of going to 102nd.

Clarknt67
July 8th, 2005, 04:08 PM
I love the Chrysler Building even though the ESB makes it look tiny. It's sad to think that the 67th floor is gutted, they should make it into an observation deck. Also the ESB and Chrysler are the only two buildings in NYC that pass the 1,000 foot mark so I think an observation deck in the Chrysler would be a success.

Less likely now that the rock center tower is poised to reopen it's 80th floor deck.

Alonzo-ny
July 8th, 2005, 04:17 PM
It would be great, though very unlikely, if alot of buildings opened observation decks and provided some different views than the esb. i love the view from esb but would love it more if i could see the view from woolworth, chrysler and some others. cant wait for the new wtc observation deck as i never seen the old one. also ive seen the view from the rainbow room and its an amazing view of esb. its probably the best place to view the esb in its majestic entirity

NY_Yankees_1979
July 8th, 2005, 04:21 PM
I was wondering if you can get to the 102nd floop observatory to because i've heard from multiple sources you are allowed but of the times ive been there ive not seen the option of going to 102nd. Well I was at the ESB today and only managed to get to the 86th floor, the views are awesome from up there, its also said that on a clear day you can see 80 miles out. Manhattan looks so tiny and it's awesome looking at all the waterways of this city and all the bridges, I could easily point out all the boroughs.

NY_Yankees_1979
July 8th, 2005, 04:21 PM
Less likely now that the rock center tower is poised to reopen it's 80th floor deck. The GE tops out at 69 floors.

NY_Yankees_1979
July 8th, 2005, 04:24 PM
It would be great, though very unlikely, if alot of buildings opened observation decks and provided some different views than the esb. i love the view from esb but would love it more if i could see the view from woolworth, chrysler and some others. cant wait for the new wtc observation deck as i never seen the old one. also ive seen the view from the rainbow room and its an amazing view of esb. its probably the best place to view the esb in its majestic entirity The pics from the 67th floor of the Chrysler Building that were posted last night in this thread (its from another thread), but anyways the view looked so neat from up there. I went to the 86th floor deck in the ESB today and it's just great. I would love to go to the 102nd floor of the ESB, too bad that deck is closed.

NYatKNIGHT
July 8th, 2005, 04:34 PM
You should see it when there isn't a tropical storm moving through.

NY_Yankees_1979
July 8th, 2005, 04:38 PM
You should see it when there isn't a tropical storm moving through. Yeah it was real cloudy today and rainy outside so it was kind of a waste of a trip up there but I could at least see portions of the five boroughs.

expose05
July 8th, 2005, 06:07 PM
thanks for the help guys. I need help with one more question. Are there any 90th 91, 92, 93, 94, etc floors in the esb?

NY_Yankees_1979
July 8th, 2005, 06:24 PM
thanks for the help guys. I need help with one more question. Are there any 90th 91, 92, 93, 94, etc floors in the esb? The ESB goes up to the 102nd floor, but the highest accesible floor by the general public is the 86th floor observation deck, there is one on the 102nd floor but it is closed to the public. The GE Building will be opening an observation deck this fall.

My favorite NYC skyscraper is the Chrysler Building; I love the giant arches at the top. Getting back to the ESB I would go to the 86th floor deck there before I would go to the Rainbow Room on the 65th floor of the GE Building. The actual cost of the ESB deck is $14 and it provides a view of 5 states that I know of (NY, NJ, PA, CT and MA).

NY_Yankees_1979
July 8th, 2005, 06:34 PM
The 102nd floor is used to observe traffic status throughout the city I believe. Yeah I think I heard something like that too. I went to the 86th floor deck today and even though it was very cloudy out I could see into the five boroughs.

expose05
July 8th, 2005, 10:32 PM
Does anyone have any pics from the 102nd floor before it closed? :)

expose05
July 8th, 2005, 11:11 PM
WOW and thanks! I think when the Freedom tower gets completed they should a lot of the television and radio equipment from the esb to the new World trade center. (but not all of it) then they can renovate the mast to its original 1930s glory.

pianoman11686
July 8th, 2005, 11:20 PM
TV will go to the Freedom Tower; radio will stay at ESB. That was the previous arrangement.

expose05
July 8th, 2005, 11:27 PM
Well hopefully it wont be that messy when the tv stuff gets move. I think all that equipment on the mast should be taken off but leave the atennea

NoyokA
July 9th, 2005, 03:03 PM
I thought Conde Nast had all of the tv crap on it.

Mostly back up I believe.

expose05
July 9th, 2005, 03:23 PM
I read on the esb website that the 102nd floor will have still have the backup stuff from the old wtc 1 but there will be a vip tour. Does anyone know if they did the renovations already they said before?

I LOVE THE SOCCER
July 9th, 2005, 03:39 PM
What is a vip tour?

expose05
July 9th, 2005, 03:44 PM
A vip tour is you don't have to wait the long lines at the empire state building. You go directly to the top skipping all that traffic. I guess you even can to the 102 floor. I assuming it will cost a lot.

ManhattanKnight
July 9th, 2005, 03:52 PM
Mostly back up I believe.

Correct. For a history of broadcasting from the ESB from the date of the building's construction through the completion of the DTV Combiner last year, see:

http://www.lnl.com/esbantennas.htm

http://www.fybush.com/site-031106.html

http://www.fybush.com/site-031120.html

http://www.fybush.com/wtc-recovery.html

http://www.tvtechnology.com/features/news/News_Empire.shtml

Alonzo-ny
August 3rd, 2005, 09:18 PM
Here's something interesting, i used the esb website question service, i asked if public could access the 102nd floor. In reply they said the 102nd floor is still under construction and is closed to the public. Does this mean it will be opened at some point?

Also very dissapointed in you guys after a full 24 hours no new posts at all in ny skyscrapers and arch!!!!!

James Kovata
August 4th, 2005, 01:01 AM
Here's something interesting, i used the esb website question service, i asked if public could access the 102nd floor. In reply they said the 102nd floor is still under construction and is closed to the public. Does this mean it will be opened at some point?

Also very dissapointed in you guys after a full 24 hours no new posts at all in ny skyscrapers and arch!!!!!

Damn...I want to know the answer to this one.

lofter1
August 4th, 2005, 09:25 AM
i used the esb website question service, i asked if public could access the 102nd floor. In reply they said the 102nd floor is still under construction and is closed to the public. Does this mean it will be opened at some point?
Imagine the waiting in line to get up there!!

TomAuch
August 4th, 2005, 06:43 PM
I thought they permanately closed the 102nd floor observation deck because it was too crowded.

Alonzo-ny
August 4th, 2005, 07:30 PM
They could do something similar to the time passes to get inside the statue of liberty, you reserve a free time pass online or over the phone which allocates a certain amount of peolpe to enter every hour, you enter in the hour allocated and its not overcrowded or huge lines

Johnnyboy
August 4th, 2005, 07:55 PM
empire state building is my favorite building in the world. a higher observation deck wich hopefully will happen will make an already great building even better.

BrooklynRider
August 4th, 2005, 11:33 PM
Given the huge crowds the ESB attracts, I don't think it is practical or feasible to open that little room to the public. Remember, the new #1 concern is "evacuation".

Alonzo-ny
August 4th, 2005, 11:47 PM
Doesnt the statue of liberty reservation system restrict the amount of people there? And for the last time why wouldnt we let people in because it will take slightly longer for them to get out, also if you've seen any pictures of the 102nd floor its not that little. The new wtcs observation deck will be a hundred feet higher than the 102nd floor but it will still be open. The reservation system would mean only a certain amount of people getting to the 102nd floor with the reservation-less people restricted to the 86th floor, or didnt you read my post. Its the same thing i pointed out in the burj dubai thread when it was said the obs deck would be 40 floors below the top floor. Whats the point in having and observation deck if people cant get to the highest point. It wasted space as far as im concerned between the 86th and 102nd

BrooklynRider
August 5th, 2005, 10:08 AM
You cannot go up to the Statue of Libert's crown since September 11th due to concerns about evacuation. I'm going on a 20 year memory here, but I do not remember that room being very large. If anyone has ther dimensions it might help, but the elevator to the 102nd Floor was taken from the 86th - if my memory is correct.

sfenn1117
August 5th, 2005, 09:17 PM
I went to the Statue of Liberty in the summer of 2001, it was a foggy day and I have pictures of the WTC poking through the fog :(

Anyways they didn't allow us to go to the crown then. The highest we got was the top of the pedestal. It's a rickety stair case to the top from what I saw.

I don't think the 102nd floor will be open to the public anytime soon, if not ever, even with reservations. It's too small. I've actually never been to the ESB observatory (But I did at the wtc), but when I was in Toronto it took 2 hours to get to the highest point of the CN Tower, but only 20 minutes to get to the regular part. In NY.....it would probably take all day to get to the top.

I LOVE THE SOCCER
August 6th, 2005, 12:16 PM
The same reasoning is valid also for the 2nd and 3rd level of the Eiffel tuor, but it is completely visitable, of course!

Alonzo-ny
August 6th, 2005, 08:35 PM
You contradicted your own post you've never been there so you dont know. Ive never been to the 102nd floor but theres a picture earlier in this thread which shows it isnt that small really. Incidentally i visited the empire state yesterday with a friend, there was a sign saying phase 1 was complete of construction meaning the new ticketing area was complete, which it was and its another world from the one i visited a year ago. This sign also stated future phases included multi media experinces, moving the gift shop to the 80th floor skydeck, renovating the 80th floor and 86th floor and the 102nd floor observation deck so your wrong it will be opening in the near future

lofter1
August 6th, 2005, 10:38 PM
I've found that if you go to ESB Observation Deck at "off times" there is no wait at all.

Like so many NY experiences to have the most excellent time you have to do things / go places when the crowds are off doing something else.

Alonzo-ny
August 8th, 2005, 08:16 PM
When are these off times as id like to be able to enjoy the view without masses of tourists taking pictures and getting in the way and all that.

lofter1
August 9th, 2005, 11:18 AM
When are these off times as id like to be able to enjoy the view without masses of tourists taking pictures and getting in the way and all that.
10 PM is a great time to go.

Alonzo-ny
August 9th, 2005, 08:56 PM
Thank you lofter, am planning to go soon and get some great night photos on my shiny new digital camera, all previous attempts with crappy throwaway cameras have never been sucessful!

expose05
August 13th, 2005, 10:45 PM
Hey guys I find some rare interior pics of the esb. The website is www.qsl.net/n2row/empirepics.htm If this doesn't work then go to google and type in empire state building atenna and click images. Then find the website name under the picture and click it. these pics are huge though. :)

expose05
August 13th, 2005, 10:48 PM
They are great pics
:D

pianoman11686
August 23rd, 2005, 10:22 PM
Picture taken today (8/23):

http://images.snapfish.com/3447%3A77523232%7Ffp3%3Enu%3D3259%3E846%3E28%3A%3E WSNRCG%3D3232%3B4%3A7338%3A6nu0mrj

NewYorkYankee
August 24th, 2005, 12:38 PM
Thank you for all the pictures you've posted lately Pianoman! It helps hold me over the last 9 days until I move!

pianoman11686
August 24th, 2005, 02:54 PM
No problem. I'm glad you like them. This recent flurry of pictures is kind of like my last hurrah (for a while). I too am leaving home in a few days (3 to be exact) for college, and probably won't post any new pics until at least December.

sfenn1117
August 24th, 2005, 03:09 PM
No problem. I'm glad you like them. This recent flurry of pictures is kind of like my last hurrah (for a while). I too am leaving home in a few days (3 to be exact) for college, and probably won't post any new pics until at least December.

I'm in the same situation so I did the same thing lol.

NewYorkYankee
August 24th, 2005, 11:40 PM
Pianoman, where is it your going to college again?

pianoman11686
August 25th, 2005, 12:55 AM
Duke.

NYatKNIGHT
August 25th, 2005, 02:45 PM
You can send pictures of Duke, then.

pianoman11686
August 26th, 2005, 09:37 PM
Yeah...Raleigh and Durham have pretty pathetic skylines. I don't think I'll be sending pictures.

lofter1
October 20th, 2005, 01:54 PM
ESB Lights ...

http://www.esbnyc.com/tourism/tourism_lightingschedule.cfm?CFID=13584333&CFTOKEN=49569540

http://www.esbnyc.com/images/tourism_pagehead_lightingschedule.gif

http://www.esbnyc.com/images/buildingimage_image8.jpg

Visitors and observers from near and far should not take the lighting of the Empire State Building for granted because there are always interesting and interactive events planned throughout the year. As a focal point for displays, gatherings, and promotions, the Tower Lights just might surprise you with how often they change!

For a detailed timeline of how the Tower Lights have evolved, please visit the Tower Lights History (http://www.esbnyc.com/tourism/tourism_history_towerlights.cfm?CFID=13584333&CFTOKEN=49569540) page.


Below is a list of the upcoming Tower Light themes. Visit the Tower Lights (http://www.esbnyc.com/tourism/tourism_lightingschedule_current.cfm?CFID=13584333&CFTOKEN=49569540) page for a list of past color definitions.
Upcoming Tower Lighting Schedule

October 04 - October 05, 2005 White *ESB Lighting
October 06, 2005 Red/White/Red *Leukemia/Lymphoma "Light the Night"
October 07 - October 10, 2005 Red/White/Green *Columbus Day
October 11, 2005 Red/Blue/Red *Julliard School of Music, 100th Anniversary
October 12 - October 16, 2005 White *ESB Lighting
October 17, 2005 Orange/Orange/White *NYC Goes Orange/Food Bank for NYC
October 18 -
October 19, 2005 White *ESB Lighting
October 20, 2005 Red *Red Cross
October 21 - October 23, 2005 Purple/Purple/White *Walk to Remember - Alzheimer's Assoc.
October 24, 2005 Blue/Blue/White *UN Day
October 25, 2005 Red *Red Ribbon Day, DEA
October 26 - October 30, 2005 Red/Red/Yellow *Autumn
November 01, 2005 Blue *U.S. Coast Guard / "Keeper of NY Harbor"
November 02 - November 03, 2005 Red *Big Apple Circus/Clown Care Unit
November 04 - November 06, 2005 Orange/Orange/Blue *NYC Marathon
November 07 - November 08, 2005 Red/Red/Yellow *Autumn
November 09, 2005 Yellow/White/Yellow *NYC Honors County Music Awards
November 10 - November 14, 2005 Red/White/Blue *Veterans' Day*Colors are listed from bottom to top as they appear from the street. http://www.esbnyc.com/images/clearpixel.gifhttp://www.esbnyc.com/images/clearpixel.gif


Color Definitions:


For a detailed list of past color definitions, please visit the Tower Lights (http://www.esbnyc.com/tourism/tourism_lightingschedule_current.cfm?CFID=13584333&CFTOKEN=49569540) page.


Special Lighting Requests:


The Empire State Building has developed an annual lighting schedule which honors National Holidays, seasons, the myriad ethnic groups living in the New York City area and many worthy causes. We receive an extraordinary number of requests and unfortunately cannot accommodate them all. Our policy does not allow lighting for commercial (new products, corporate events etc.) or personal/private (birthdays, anniversaries etc.) occasions. All special lighting requests must be presented in writing and must include as many details as possible.

During spring and fall bird migration seasons and particularly on cloudy, humid and/or foggy nights, when large numbers of birds are seen flying near the building, the tower lights are turned off. Observatory personnel on the 86th floor outdoor deck notify the engineers. The birds are attracted by the lights and there is a danger they will fly into the building and be killed.

The following is a list of the standard annual lighting schedule with the related events (between holidays and special events the tower is illuminated with white lighting). Please refer to the Special Events (http://www.esbnyc.com/tourism/tourism_specialevents.cfm?CFID=13584333&CFTOKEN=49569540) page for changes to the lighting schedule due to current events.

Schedule is subject to change so please refer to the Special Events (http://www.esbnyc.com/tourism/tourism_specialevents.cfm?CFID=13584333&CFTOKEN=49569540) page for changes to the lighting schedule due to current events.

ZippyTheChimp
October 20th, 2005, 02:03 PM
And I thought the orange was for Halloween.

http://img363.imageshack.us/img363/4736/esb252yx.th.jpg (http://img363.imageshack.us/my.php?image=esb252yx.jpg)

NYatKNIGHT
October 20th, 2005, 03:14 PM
^Nice.
I thought they did make it orange for Halloween, at least on the 31st, but I guess not.

At some point the autmun colors included a burnt orange, almost rust color. Wonder where that went.

NYguy
October 27th, 2005, 09:42 AM
That photo is breathtaking. I saw the Thunderbirds years ago in Nevada.

TomAuch
October 27th, 2005, 02:12 PM
Any photo with planes of ANY kind near a supertall like the ESB get me unnerved.

expose05
October 27th, 2005, 08:49 PM
Do you think the owner of the empire state building should take off the metal observation bars and put up ultra clear glass protection like which is on the newly reopened rockfeller observation deck. It looks like if there is no glass at all. Oh and by the way are the esb renovations done for the tourists done yet.

Edward
October 31st, 2005, 11:34 PM
The view of Empire State Building (http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/) from Top of the Rock (http://www.wirednewyork.com/guide/observation/top_of_the_rock.htm) - observation deck atop GE building in Rockefeller Center.

http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/images/ge_observation_esb.jpg (http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/)

czsz
October 31st, 2005, 11:45 PM
Incredible. How much does it cost to go up there?

lofter1
October 31st, 2005, 11:52 PM
Incredible. How much does it cost to go up there?
Starting 11/01: $14.00

http://www.topoftherocknyc.com/ODTStatic/site.htm

czsz
November 1st, 2005, 12:20 AM
Dammit, that's worse than ESB. Hopefully it's the novelty factor, and the competition will help those prices climb down to some extent.

NYatKNIGHT
November 2nd, 2005, 06:17 PM
Another view of Empire State Building (http://www.wirednewyork.com/landmarks/esb/) from Top of the Rock (http://www.wirednewyork.com/guide/observation/top_of_the_rock.htm) - observation deck atop GE building in Rockefeller Center.

http://www.pbase.com/v3/image/51701563.jpg

krulltime
November 4th, 2005, 02:00 AM
See now thats what I love about Top Of The Rock!!! That view of the Empire State Building!!!

krulltime
November 4th, 2005, 02:03 AM
Dammit, that's worse than ESB. Hopefully it's the novelty factor, and the competition will help those prices climb down to some extent.

Wait isn't the price on the Empire State Building about $20 now? $14 for Top Of The Rock sounds reasonable.

Alonzo-ny
November 4th, 2005, 09:30 AM
Wait isn't the price on the Empire State Building about $20 now? $14 for Top Of The Rock sounds reasonable.

I think it was like $11 when i was there couple months ago

michelle1
November 4th, 2005, 09:39 AM
I think the price on the Empire State Building is $27

michelle1
November 4th, 2005, 09:49 AM
Awesome photos of ESB

fioco
November 4th, 2005, 09:53 PM
Admission Prices at the Empire State Building:
ESB Audio Tourhttp://www.esbnyc.com/images/white_pixel.gif$6.00
Adults (18-61) http://www.esbnyc.com/images/white_pixel.gif$14.00
Youth (12-17)http://www.esbnyc.com/images/white_pixel.gif$13.00
Child (6-11)http://www.esbnyc.com/images/white_pixel.gif$9.00
Seniors (62+)http://www.esbnyc.com/images/white_pixel.gif$13.00
Military w/IDhttp://www.esbnyc.com/images/white_pixel.gif$13.00
Military In Uniformhttp://www.esbnyc.com/images/white_pixel.gifFree
Toddlers (5 or younger)http://www.esbnyc.com/images/white_pixel.gifFree

Official website of the Empire State Building (http://www.esbnyc.com/index2.cfm)

Quazar
December 5th, 2005, 06:49 AM
Hey guys, I was browsing the net looking for pictures of NYC and came across this site. You guys take some wonderful pictures.

In any case, I'm from Atlanta, and my family and I decided to go to New York for the Thanksgiving holidays since none of us had ever been before, save for my younger brother who went with Model UN through his high school.

I must say, the New York skyline is the most amazing skyline I've ever seen. I've been to LA, Tokyo, Houston, Dallas, San Fransisco, etc. and New York blows them all away. I've never seen anything like it. The sheer height of Manhattan is astounding. Yeah, Tokyo is vast and expansive, but it doesn't have that towering, epic height.

Well, the reason I decided to post here is because I noticed you were all discussing the 102nd floor on the Empire State Building. It is open to the public now, at least it was when I went. However, it costs an extra $10 in addition to the regular $14 to visit it. My family opted for the tickets, and it's a very cool room. Yes, it's small, but the feeling up there is phenomenal.

The Top of the Rock is a good view, too, and allows for some great shots of the ESB. My favorite building in NYC is still the Chrysler building, though. :-)

Atlanta is growing and getting some awesome buildings, but they're all new, 21st century architecture. There is only one Manhattan skyline, and there will never be anything else like it. You guys have a wonderful city, you should be proud of it. I can't wait to go back. :-)

mrjoanofarc
December 17th, 2005, 08:53 AM
I went to the Statue of Liberty in the summer of 2001, it was a foggy day and I have pictures of the WTC poking through the fog :(

Anyways they didn't allow us to go to the crown then. The highest we got was the top of the pedestal. It's a rickety stair case to the top from what I saw.

I don't think the 102nd floor will be open to the public anytime soon, if not ever, even with reservations. It's too small. I've actually never been to the ESB observatory (But I did at the wtc), but when I was in Toronto it took 2 hours to get to the highest point of the CN Tower, but only 20 minutes to get to the regular part. In NY.....it would probably take all day to get to the top.

Omg... I was at the Statue of Liberty in the summer of 2001, too!! And it was very foggy, and the top of the WTC was covered in fog. I know fog might happen several times during the month, but the three days we were there, it only got really foggy one day, and all the rest were pretty much crystal clear.

Is it possible we were standing on the Statue of Liberty the same exact day that summer? And I just stumbled upon your post!

I have a picture my dad took of the WTC under fog, from the SoL. It's on a different computer, though. I'll paste you the link and see if it triggers any memories. Very interesting!

P.S. I don't know if this is discussed in later thread pages, because I just read this one post, but the 102nd Floor Observation Deck of the ESB has officially been reopened as of November 1, 2005!!!!!!! I'm FLIPPIN OUT because of it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!11!1!!1!

expose05
December 17th, 2005, 07:12 PM
someone go there and take some pics please:eek: :eek: :eek:eek: :p:D :D :D

Comelade
February 4th, 2006, 04:25 PM
veiled the photographs of my last voyage of the empire state building


http://img367.imageshack.us/img367/820/esb209qe.jpg



http://img367.imageshack.us/img367/6703/esb244cq.jpg


http://img367.imageshack.us/img367/133/esb280xg.jpg


With the american radiator building :
http://img367.imageshack.us/img367/6834/americanradiatoretesb25lz.jpg


Reflet
http://img367.imageshack.us/img367/4045/reflets115lm.jpg


See :
http://perrin.olivier.free.fr/new_york_2005/Empire%20State%20Building/index.html
with the american radiator building
http://perrin.olivier.free.fr/new_york_2005/American%20Radiator%20et%20l%20Empire%20State%20Bu ilding/index.html

TLOZ Link5
February 5th, 2006, 12:03 AM
I like the second one the best: with the exception of the HBO building all the way in the distance on 42nd Street, every building in that view is prewar. Were it not for the cobrahead lampposts, I'd think that it was a color photo from the 1940s.

Comelade
February 7th, 2006, 10:10 AM
I like the second one the best: with the exception of the HBO building all the way in the distance on 42nd Street, every building in that view is prewar. Were it not for the cobrahead lampposts, I'd think that it was a color photo from the 1940s.
Thank You

mrjoanofarc
February 22nd, 2006, 12:51 AM
I like the second one the best: with the exception of the HBO building all the way in the distance on 42nd Street, every building in that view is prewar. Were it not for the cobrahead lampposts, I'd think that it was a color photo from the 1940s.

AND the huge antenna atop the ESB's mooring mast... I really wish it were logistically possible to take all that crap off the top (and still keep all the connections it serves?). It looked especially beautiful and super-clean-cut in the 1930's:

http://static.flickr.com/26/102896781_115ef64e03_o.jpg

TLOZ Link5
February 22nd, 2006, 07:23 PM
Everything looks especially clean-cut when it's brand new. Now that ESB has some years on it, it has character.

That's why I'm particularly excited about 15 CPW; when that Indiana limestone (the same they used on ESB) gets a little weathered in the next 20 years, it'll still look great, if not better.

Dagrecco82
February 26th, 2006, 01:13 AM
The Empire State Building draped in the colors of the Dominican Republic flag.


http://img153.imageshack.us/img153/6602/carbonempirerresize20mq.jpg

lofter1
March 13th, 2006, 12:07 PM
Sky-High Vacancy Rate At Empire State Building

NY 1
March 13, 2006

http://www.ny1.com/ny1/content/index.jsp?stid=1&aid=57763#

According to Crain's New York Business, the vacancy rate at the 75-year-old Empire State Building is 18 percent.

That's up from just one-point-seven percent in 2000, even though the rent is nearly 25 percent below the average Midtown rate.

The paper says problems include cramped offices, old infrastructure and fears that the building could be a target for terrorists.

Crain's says the main reason could be the strained relationship between Wien & Malkin, which represents the owners, and Helmsley Spear Inc., which handles marketing. The two sides have been fighting in court for control of the building since co-owner Harry Helmsley died in 1997.

Copyright © 2006 NY1 News.

LeCom
March 14th, 2006, 09:33 PM
^The owners are damn lucky they got contrackts with tenants. Everyone was trying to relocate out of the building right after 9/11, and many still do.

Bruce C Adamson
March 21st, 2006, 04:30 PM
To Those N.Y. Historians:

I am the great grandson of Henry B. Ely, whose father was Secretary of the New York Stock Exchange from 1873-1919 with a break and the youngest Captain of the New York Seventh Reigment. Henry B. Ely built the Astoria Hotel where the Empire State Building stands today. This was completed in 1897 and the opening act was Rosemary with actors/actresses Maud Adams, John Drew and Ethel Barrymore performing.

Ely's grandfather by marriage, Abner Bartlett was a trustee of the Astor Estate. Abner was responsible for naming "The Waldorf" Hotel for William Waldorf Astor in 1894 which was built before "The Astoria. Hotel" by Ely. Abner was proposing subways to William Whitney in the 1880s. A very distant cousin Alfred Ely Beach built the very first subway in New York City in 1870.

My grandpa James Harold Adamson built "Larchmont Shores" from granite rock from the New York subways in the 1920s. James' son Harold Adamson earn his last Academy Award nomination (5) in the mid 1950s when he wrote the song "An Affair To Remember."

A test will be given in two weeks.

Bruce C. Adamson -- producer of http://barrymorefamily.com

and http://ciajfk.com

Kris
April 23rd, 2006, 12:26 PM
April 23, 2006
New York's Lighthouse
By MARK KINGWELL

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2006/04/22/nyregion/23essa.large1.jpg
In St. Gabriele Park, the stately Empire State Building is seen in the background.

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2006/04/23/nyregion/23essa.large2.jpg
During construction, the view through a window in the Chrysler Building.

LIKE most people, I made a trip to the observatory of the Empire State Building on my very first visit to New York, when I was a gawky Canadian teenager fresh off the train from Toronto. My visit to that building, which will have been open 75 years on May 1, was romantic in more than one sense.

I was with my first girlfriend, a petite girl with braces on her teeth. Though neither of us hadseen "An Affair to Remember," the 1957 Cary Grant-Deborah Kerr weepie that immortalizes the building as the quintessential New York lovers' rendezvous, we knew that the top of the building was the ideal place to share a kiss, even if it was awkward and adolescent and jostled by other tourists hefting the bulky camera equipment of the pre-digital day.

The movie we saw later that day in Times Square — a matinee of "E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial" — featured a fistfight in the back of the theater, in the smoking rows, and my girlfriend and I broke up on the train ride back to Canada. But that moment on top of the building, looking out over the broad Hudson and Lower Manhattan's dense packing of brick and stone, sealed New York's grip on me, as it has on millions of others.

I would not visit the top of the Empire State again for two decades, probably a typical gap. You go once, and you may never go again. Natives may never go at all, which is a shame. The foursquare view from the top of the Empire State, even more than the sweep of Manhattan that was available from the summit of the twin towers, is one of life's great vistas. It may not quite be, as the building's primary booster and moving force, Al Smith, argued, better than air travel. But it must surely be what Ms. Kerr breathlessly calls it (twice): the nearest thing to heaven we have in New York.

IN business terms, the Empire State Building may be the most famous white elephant on the planet. Built against all logic during the Depression, it has never succeeded in its ostensible function as an office building. Early years of indifference gave it the label "Empty State Building," and vacancy rates have recently climbed again, from a low of 1.7 percent in 2000 to more than 18 percent.

The current rent of just $37 a square foot is well below Midtown averages of $48, and yet the building's owners still can't fill the place. (The small offices and antiquated infrastructure are part of the deterrent, despite projected upgrades; but so is a continuing feud between the two companies that control the building, Helmsley-Spear and Wien & Malkin, which complicates leasing arrangements. The dispute arose a decade ago when heirs of the building's co-owners since 1961, Harry Helmsley and Lawrence Wien — both now dead — could not agree on control.)

Meanwhile, some four million visitors a year make their way to the observatory on the 86th floor (a higher deck, near the building's 102nd-floor summit, reopened last fall after having been closed for years). Here, the weight of the building's significance seems to outstrip its financial woes, even its very material existence. Like all great monuments, the Empire State Building shelters meanings that extend well beyond its gorgeous Indiana limestone cladding and tiny throwback offices.

Consider just three of the many factors that make the building memorable: the idea of the skyscraper, the mythical functions of the tower and finally the peculiarly American dream-logic of the building's astonishing construction.

When the Empire State Building opened its rather modest Fifth Avenue doors on May 1, 1931 — Al Smith, the former governor, was there, of course, with photographers, kids and a band — the event punctuated a period of architectural ambition and civic glee that the world is not likely to witness again.

In the span of two short decades, New York's congested street plan and material wealth, together with crucial developments in science and technology, tempered steel and the elevator, led to the invention of a new architectural form. From Lower Manhattan to Midtown, from Wall Street up to the 40's, Manhattan pushed into the sky the planet's first vertebrate buildings, shoving aside the squat crustaceans that had held sway for so long.

The Empire State had several distinguished predecessors during the 1920's. The "race for the sky" contest — between H. Craig Severance's Manhattan Company Building, way downtown, and William Van Alen's Chrysler Building — gripped the city's imagination in a manner that is hard to imagine now. When Van Alen won the race by hoisting the Chrysler's distinctive spire from a secret mechanism built inside the peak, the skyscraper and the idea of war over architectural one-upmanship seemed settled for good.

For many, the Chrysler remains Manhattan's best tall building, a Deco masterpiece, even though it was mocked mercilessly by contemporary critics, not least for the distinctive sheathing of its "Aztec pinnacle," to quote the poet Charles Tomlinson.

The race was not over, however. One of the most poignant pictures ever captured of the Chrysler — not by Margaret Bourke-White, that disciple of the Chrysler cult — shows the rising column of the Empire State construction at 34th Street through one of the triangular slash-windows of the uptown rival.

Taller buildings would come, in Manhattan and Chicago and elsewhere, but the Empire State would not be surpassed.

Even without its now distinctive (and never used) dirigible mooring of chrome-nickel steel and faceted glass, added at Smith's behest and over William Lamb's objections so that the building would have "a hat," the Empire State would have been taller than the Chrysler. The spire made it 1,250 feet high — a figure that would settle skyscraper hash for almost half a century. This span as world's tallest building is itself worth a meta-record in this age of Asian gigantism, where structures like the Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur straddle the summit of summits for, at best, a few years. (The world's tallest building at this writing is Taipei 101 in Taiwan, and at least three taller buildings are already planned in Shanghai alone.)

TO some eyes, the Chrysler remains aesthetically superior: a function, in part, of Deco's nostalgic appeal and Van Alen's instinctive grasp of Gotham's Batmannish soul. In a comparison with the slimmer Chrysler, it is easy to underestimate the tough masculine beauty of Lamb's design for the Empire State.

Whereas the Chrysler displays a giddy modernism, the Empire State combines subtle Deco grace notes with an assured, almost classical sense of proportion. Its solid central shaft rises gracefully from cleverly arranged volumes at the base, lifting to an understated cap of layered sections. In a Vanity Fair feature of the day, Lamb was named one of New York's 10 "Poets of Steel," an honor denied to both Van Alen and Severance.

But even absent such aesthetic rehabilitation, the Empire State would be superior in meaning, the distinctive image of mythic New York: the New York of film and fiction, beckoning and false, corrupted and sometimes corrupting, but irresistible for all that.

The building is, obviously, a tower, indeed the central tower of New York. Thus it functions, as the modernist master Robert A. M. Stern once put it, as "the lighthouse of Manhattan." But like all towers, it is no mere structure or landmark. A tower speaks of and to the human ambition for transcendence, that restless desire to transcend what the Futurist theorist Emilio Filippo Tommaso Marinetti called "the vile earth." The paradox of the tower, any tower, is that it stands fixed to the ground even as it stretches up and tries, somehow, to achieve liftoff.

The Empire State is not Futurist in design, nor is it explicitly utopian. Indeed, its workaday offices and no-nonsense design are deliberately utilitarian in conception. Most people who visit the building pay no attention to its often under-rented interior, a kind of urban time machine filled with diamond merchants, insurance companies and private investigators, among many, many others.

Nevertheless, with its machine-made grace, the Empire State Building towers above the island grid and fixes the scene. Standing at the center of Manhattan, it gathers up the city to itself and then redeploys it, out and down, to every spot from which it can be seen.

Towers spring from military desire as well as spiritual urges, and the central position of the Empire State might raise, as towers do, the specter of surveillance. Especially in these Patriot Act days, one can imagine that it drapes a visual net over New York, a sort of heaven-suspended security system.

And yet the grid it overlooks is, for all its constraints, a stage of freedom and spontaneity. Its very rigidity seems to offer new invitations to liberty. The streets crush and bend and mangle their straight lines, giving way to the wonky charm of the West Village, for example, or the Battery. The Empire State, meanwhile, resolutely resists any link to the security state. Its empire is not the one of watchful eyes and foreign invasions; rather, at its summit assemble the free citizens of the world, multilingual and blessed, who ascend to gather in their views and memories, not data or evidence.

The Empire State holds New York's eight million souls together in a way the taller World Trade Center never could, and even now, in dark memory, does not. The older building's unlikely birth in the middle of the 1929 Crash; its defiant optimism steered by Al Smith and the financier John J. Raskob, those quintessential self-made men; the astonishing assembly line of steel and stone that made it the fastest megaproject the world had seen; its gathering of workers from all nations and trades — all this combines to make the Empire State the ultimate dream building.

Monument and promise, folly and wonder of the world, it can be no surprise that no other tall building even dared challenge it for pre-eminence for almost half a century.

We sometimes speculate about a particular feature of a city, and wonder what things would be like if it did not exist. Especially because of what happened to those taller buildings downtown, the answer in the case of the Empire State Building is clear. Like our ideas of God and happiness, if the Empire State Building did not exist in the New York skyline, we would have to invent it.

Mark Kingwell, a professor of philosophy at the University of Toronto and a contributing editor to Harper's magazine, is the author of "Nearest Thing to Heaven: The Empire State Building and American Dreams," to be published next month by Yale University Press.

Copyright 2006 The New York Times Company

Kris
April 23rd, 2006, 02:29 PM
Video: The Closest Thing to Heaven (http://nytimes.feedroom.com/?fr_story=8b4076bde4d875ca952e87eba0bfd84443d5b8e5 )
Sam Roberts of The Times reminisces about New York's tallest building.

Video: Fun Facts (http://nytimes.feedroom.com/?fr_story=26df1adc5f8fdb0776abab3a9c1cd9d1cf0ebcd6 )
Jeff Vandam of The Times discusses quirky tidbits about the Empire State Building.

Audio Slide Show: Al Smith's Ambitious Project (http://www.nytimes.com/packages/khtml/2006/04/23/nyregion/thecity/20060423_ALSMITH_AUDIOSS.html)
In 1929, the former governor of New York teamed with others with the idea to create the world's tallest skyscraper.

Audio Slide Show: Working in the Sky (http://www.nytimes.com/packages/khtml/2006/04/23/nyregion/20060423_WORKERS_AUDIOSS.html)
The ironworkers of the Empire State Building worked without harnesses, hard hats or wires.

Audio Slide Show: Light of His Life (http://www.nytimes.com/packages/khtml/2006/04/23/nyregion/20060423_LIGHTS_AUDIOSS.htm)
For the chief electrician of the Empire State Building, changing the color of the lights is just one of many responsibilities.

Slide Show: Wish You Were There (http://www.nytimes.com/slideshow/2006/04/22/nyregion/metrocampaigns/20060423_ESB_SLIDESHOW_1.html)
Readers share their memories and photos of the Empire State Building.

Slide Show: Then and Now (http://www.nytimes.com/slideshow/2006/04/23/nyregion/thecity/20060423_ESB_THENNOW_SLIDESHOW_1.html)
Many of the familiar rhythms of the Empire State Building have stayed remarkably the same over 75 years.

Slide Show: Everywhere You Look (http://www.nytimes.com/slideshow/2006/04/23/nyregion/thecity/20060423_ESB_EVERYWHERE_SLIDESHOW_1.html)
The Empire State Building has imitators across the country and around the world.

Kris
April 23rd, 2006, 03:11 PM
April 23, 2006

75 Years
Performing Miracles, With Wrench and Rivet
By THOMAS KELLY

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2006/04/23/nyregion/thecity/wrench650.jpg
TOY TOWER From atop the 59th floor of the Pan Am (now Met Life) Building, a different perspective on a rival skyscraper.

WILLIAM STARRETT, whose construction company was the general contractor on the Empire State Building, once declared that building skyscrapers was the nearest peacetime equivalent to war. His analogy was never more apt than during the raising of America's most fabled structure. Not only was the Empire State Building built in an astonishing 13 months, but it was done almost entirely without overtime.

Mr. Starrett knew that brilliance on the drawing board is meaningless, that it is sweat, muscle and skill that transform idea into fact. By the time the building started going up, the development frenzy of the 20's had gone bust. The Empire State was the only game in town, and that is why Mr. Starrett was able to recruit the elite of the city's construction trades.

They arrived each morning from the boroughs outside Manhattan and beyond, immigrants and native born, some young and fresh, others scarred and bent by past endeavors. They carried the tools of their trade in handmade wooden boxes, or on belts hanging from lean waists. On the way to the site they passed soup lines and shuttered businesses, vivid reminders that they were lucky to be employed at all.

But before the workers went up, they had to go down, because standing staunchly in their way was the original Waldorf-Astoria Hotel. A few days after the stock market crash of 1929, crews began the hard, nasty work of demolishing the hotel, tearing it apart with sledgehammers and pry bars and blowtorches. In the end, 16,000 truckloads of debris was hauled away, most of it dumped into the sea off Sandy Hook, N.J. Once the hotel was a memory, the men dug deeper, blasting into the Manhattan bedrock until, on St. Patrick's Day 1930, the journey upward began.

From Day 1, the pace was dizzying. Dozens of different trades, from the ironworkers who led the way into the Manhattan sky, to the concrete men and brickies, to the tin knockers and stonemasons, electricians, plasterers and elevator constructors, were employed on the project.

Every day was controlled mayhem. You started your day at 8 a.m., broke for lunch at noon, and quit at 4:30 when the whistle blew. The racket was ear-splitting: the barking of dozens of rivet guns, the diesel roar of derricks, the bellowing of foremen and the pounding by hundreds of carpenters.

There was no room for error in the tight schedule of deliveries that the contractors had designed. Materials came from all over America and beyond: granite from Midwestern quarries, steel from Pennsylvania mills, marble from Italy. Much of it arrived on the East Side docks, where it was loaded onto flatbeds and hauled across town. Trucks drove directly into the belly of the building, and the material they carried never hit the ground; it was snatched right off the truck beds and hoisted immediately to the floors where it was needed. On each floor, small-gauge rail was built to ferry material to the appropriate work site.

If you worked on the Empire State, you hustled all day long, whether you were a skilled electrician or a water boy or a rivet punk. If you could not handle the pace, there was a line of hungry men that snaked around the block each day waiting for a shot, and the foremen were happy to point them out. The operation was so tight that the steel often arrived still warm from the forges.

But the men also reveled in being the best, the fastest. Every Monday, the various trades placed money into hats and then spent the week racing one another skyward, competing to see which gang could throw up the most steel, drive the most rivets, lay the most brick, pour the most concrete.

On Fridays, escorted by men with guns, the paymaster made his way through the building, calling out the name of each man and handing him a pay envelope filled with cash. The gang that won that week's competition picked up a nice bonus from the hat money. But even without the bonus, the pay was princely. Tradesmen earned almost $2 an hour, laborers $1 to $1.25. Subway workers, by contrast, earned about 36 cents an hour — $30 for an 84-hour week.

All the trades smashed records. The standard for erecting steel was three floors a week. On the Empire State Building, the ironworkers often threw up five floors in a week, or a story a day.

At the peak of construction, on Aug. 14, 1930, 3,439 men were at work on site. Construction is a dangerous job, and men sometimes die doing it; the Empire State Building was no exception. Most jobs at the site were performed on the edge of the abyss; that was where the carpenters hammered together their forms, or molds, and where the stonemasons hung the building's granite skin. There were no hard hats, no safety harnesses and no jobs for the faint of heart.

THE more radical press of the day wrote apocryphal stories of mass death on the site brought on by capitalist greed. In truth, Starrett Brothers paid much more attention to safety than was customary for the time, even placing nursing stations throughout the project. In the end, between the demolition of the Waldorf-Astoria and the construction of the Empire State, a dozen men died, far fewer than typical for major projects of that era.

It wasn't all toil and grind. On Fridays, as the week ended, the workers selected a floor, and when the bosses were gone they'd meet and turn the place into a casino in the sky. The carpenters slapped together gaming tables. Barrels of beer were rolled in on the small-gauge rail that snaked through each floor. The men gambled and partied as they gazed down on their receding city.

During its 13-month run, the construction was the best show in town, and the workers the accidental stars. Gawkers lined up every day to watch. Someone set up a telescope in Bryant Park and charged a nickel a pop, providing close-ups of the men as they reached higher and higher into the New York sky. The city thrilled to their mad ascent. But when the work was done, those thousands of men walked away and disappeared into the obscurity of their lives.

In May 1931, the building opened with great pomp. President Hoover, all the way down in Washington, threw a switch that turned on the power. A number of dignitaries gathered to bluster about the great accomplishment. The ceremony was broadcast live on radio. Not many of the workers showed up.

Thomas Kelly, a former construction worker, is the author of "Empire Rising: A Novel," about the construction of the Empire State Building.


The Heroes
The 'Sky Boys'
By JIM RASENBERGER

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2006/04/23/nyregion/thecity/hine450.jpg
A construction worker rides on hoisting ball while working on the mooring mast of the Empire State Building during its construction circa 1931.

THE shy, slight man who showed up on 34th Street one spring day carrying a four-by-five Graflex camera probably failed to make a powerful first impression on the workers he'd been hired to photograph. He wore owlish glasses, his ears stuck out, and his demeanor was that of the bookish schoolteacher he once had been. Altogether, he looked as if he could be blown off a steel beam by a stiff breeze.

Lewis Wickes Hine was easily underestimated. But from the moment he'd quit his job at the Ethical Culture School two decades earlier to devote his life to photography, he had proved himself brave and resourceful, not to mention enormously gifted. During his early years of photographing children in coal mines in Pennsylvania and cotton mills in South Carolina, he often posed as a Bible salesman or a life insurance agent to gain entry, then slipped away before he could be discovered and beaten up. The haunting portraits Hine brought back from those expeditions galvanized child labor laws in America and made him the pre-eminent documentary photographer of the Progressive era.

But by 1930 all that was long behind. Hine's brand of sociological concern was out of fashion, and his photographs were out of favor. The onset of the Depression only reduced the chance that this washed-up 56-year-old would find decent work with his camera. Still, when the phone call came from his old friend Belle Moskowitz, who was working as the Empire State Building's publicist, he must have hesitated before accepting her offer to become the building's official photographer. On one hand, it meant selling out to the kind of corporate interest he had long disdained. On the other hand, he needed the money.

Hine was hired to photograph all aspects of the building's construction, but it is obvious from his photographs that he found his most stirring subject in the structural ironworkers. These men — "sky boys," as Hine would come to call them — raised the building's steel frame, balancing on airy perches to join columns and beams, leading the way upward as the other trades followed from below. A tight-knit, swashbuckling clan of Newfoundlanders, Mohawk Indians, Scandinavians and Irish-Americans, they were self-proclaimed "roughnecks" who, as the New York Times writer C. G. Poore put it at the time, spent their days "strolling on the thin edge of nothingness."

Hine understood that to photograph the men who raised steel, it would not do to stand on the pavement. He would have to enter their element, to climb out among them at high altitude and take the chances they took. One of Hine's more ingenious techniques was to have himself hoisted in an open steel box rigged to a derrick line so that he could dangle over the ironworkers, a quarter-mile above the ground. Thus, he managed to capture, as no one had before, the dizzying and sometimes marvelous work of building skyscrapers.

That work had never been so marvelous as it was on 34th Street in the spring and summer of 1930. Under Hine's eye, the ironworkers raised 57,000 tons of steel in just six months, almost 50 percent more than the amount used in the Chrysler and Bank of Manhattan buildings combined.

Hine's photographs of the men, later collected in a volume called "Men at Work," convey an almost palpable appreciation of their physical labor. While his earlier reform-minded photographs portray his working-class subjects as sympathetic victims, those from the Empire State Building treat them as heroes: muscle-bound men, with strong jaw lines and sun-bleached hair, conquering gravity and steel.

They stand on airy perches, hang off guy wires and catch rides on the steel balls of derricks, all the while brimming with confidence and derring-do. The world below may have been descending into economic despair, but these are images of unabashed optimism. And whatever success the Empire State Building later achieved as architecture or real estate, Hine's photographs sealed its status as a stunning human endeavor, animating its steel and brick with something like soul. Even today, it is difficult to look up from 34th Street without conjuring one of Hine's sky boys clambering among the clouds, and the building is better for it.

After the steel frame topped out in November 1930, the workers dispersed and returned to less glorified work or, in the grip of the Depression, to none at all. Hine returned to his home in Hastings-on-Hudson and to mounting financial difficulties. The photographs he had taken on the Empire State Building would later fetch tens of thousands of dollars and become among the best-known images in the world, but they did little to help his foundering career at the time. When he died 10 years later, he was destitute.

For those months in 1930, though, both the photographer and the ironworkers were at the top of their games, and each gave the other an invaluable gift. Hine gave the men a degree of honor and immortality that is rarely bestowed on blue-collar workers. They, in turn, lent his photographs their exhilarating pride and grace, and inspired some of the greatest work of his life.

'Everybody Seems to Think You Have to Be a Superman'

THE names and biographies of most of the men who worked on the Empire State Building are lost now. But one of Lewis Wickes Hine's photography subjects left behind a few words to explain himself when a journalist visited him during a lunch break on the 84th floor. His name was Victor Gosselin; he was known to his fellow ironworkers simply as "Frenchy" because he had been raised in Montreal. Frenchy was a connector, one of the especially agile ironworkers whose task was to snatch steel from the sky as it came sailing in on the boom of the derrick, then wrangle it into the building's frame.

In Hine's photographs, Frenchy is shirtless and wears cutoff jeans that reveal cuts and bruises on his legs. That a connector, who shinnies up and down rusted steel columns all day, would wear shorts is beyond imagining, but there he is, taking a trip on the derrick ball, a half grin on his face as his shorts ride up like a chorus girl's.

"Everybody seems to think you have to be a superman or something to work on steel," Frenchy told the journalist. "Of course, it ain't no picnic, but then there's lots of jobs I'd pass up for this. I wouldn't want to be no taxi driver, for instance. Look at them down there, dodging in and out of that traffic all day long. A guy's apt to get killed that way."

Munching on a huge steak sandwich, Frenchy revealed that he had come close to getting killed several times in falls and had seen dozens of other men die. What did his wife think of his work? "She don't think nothing about it. You don't see Lindbergh's wife telling him he can't fly around in airplanes, do you?" Frenchy shrugged.

"I don't know," he added. "She never says nothing but 'Goodbye, baby; don't get hurt.' "

Jim Rasenberger is the author of "High Steel: The Daring Men Who Built the World's Greatest Skyline," a history of New York's ironworkers.

Copyright 2006 The New York Times Company

Kris
April 23rd, 2006, 03:16 PM
April 23, 2006

75 Years
Facts, Factoids (and Flat-Out Myths)
By JEFF VANDAM

Green Acres

Before there was a 350 Fifth Avenue, the site was a quiet field, hinterlands to a city miles to the south.

In 1799, a farmer named John Thomson bought 20 acres there, a parcel that included Sun Fish Pond, where residents set out lures and fishing poles. "The land is fertile, partly wooded and well watered," Mr. Thomson wrote in a sale notice for his land and buildings in 1825.

Within a few years, the land was acquired for $20,500 by one of John Jacob Astor's sons, those downtown scions who understood that the city would soon stretch north and make them even richer than they were. The family built mansions on the property and before long were entertaining the upper slices of society in their ballroom — 400 people, invited every year by Mrs. Astor and soon solidified in New York's social history as "The Four Hundred."

In 1893, William Waldorf Astor, Mrs. Astor's nephew, tore down his house to make room for a hotel that bore his middle name; it is said he did so to upset his aunt, whose house was next door. The ploy worked. Declaring the Waldorf Hotel a "glorified tavern," Mrs. Astor moved uptown — and Mr. Astor's cousin John Jacob Astor IV struck a blow for her by building an even grander hotel, the Astoria, next to the Waldorf. Soon, family differences were set aside, and the two hotels were united.

The combined hotel was the biggest stage for New York society. Of a charity ball held there in February 1898, The New York Times described "a blaze of jewels, a beauty, a richness, a variety of costumes, and an elegance of setting such as has never before combined." After three decades of sumptuousness, the hotel was sold and was toppled in 1929. Society, it seemed, had been replaced by commerce.

Older, Shorter

New York has two Empire State buildings — or, more precisely, a new one and an old one. The old one is at 640 Broadway, at Bleecker Street, and it is built of an unlovely tan brick but graced with occasional arched windows and decorative cornices. It is nine stories tall and has fewer than two dozen apartments. Downstairs, one can enjoy scallop broccoli for $4 at Hong Kong Restaurant, or have a $125 deadbolt installed from RBD Lock & Alarm, and say it all came from the Empire State Building, although nothing on the building today displays that title.

This, the original Empire State Building, was built in 1897, replacing a structure destroyed in a fire in 1895. According to news reports, the Empire State Bank occupied the first floor of the burned building, with occupants on the upper floors that included Hecht & Company, a fancy goods store, and the New York Feather Company.

Though the new building rose into the sky, the bank to which it owes its name had dissolved in 1896. The Empire State name continued to be used in press accounts about 640 Broadway, But such mentions dwindled, as did the building's fortunes, and in 1929, it was sold at auction. Two years later, when Al Smith's counterpart opened uptown, no mentions of the old building's name could be found at all.

F.A.Q.'s

Q. Why isn't there a water tank on top of the building?

A. In the matter of water, the Empire State was ahead of its time. Instead of what would have to have been the city's largest rooftop water tank, it has a pump system, with water tanks stationed every 20 floors.

Q. How long was the building intended to last?

A. Forever. The Empire State was meant to be a monument to how much American workers could achieve, according to Lydia Ruth, a spokeswoman.

Q. How much garbage is collected daily?

A. The official monthly trash output is 100 tons, which breaks down to 3.23 tons each day, equivalent to just over the curb weight of a 2006 Hummer H2.

Penny From Heaven

That fabled penny dropped from the top of the Empire State Building is not likely to kill anyone. More likely, it will land in the pocket of an electrician.

Lydia Ruth, the building's spokeswoman, explained that when wind hits the building, it travels up the side and creates an updraft, and as a result anything thrown off the building is blown back, usually to the 81st floor, where the building's electricians often work. Alternatively, items thrown from the building are carried far off into the Hudson River and beyond.

Kenneth G. Libbrecht, professor of physics at the California Institute of Technology, offered a more scientific explanation. "With no air resistance," he wrote in an e-mail message, "a penny dropped from the top of the Empire State Building would be going nearly 200 miles per hour when it hit the ground. But the air would slow its speed to maybe 100 miles per hour, depending on just how the coin tumbled on its way down.

"This is not much faster than a person can throw a penny (a good fastball travels over 90 miles per hour), so you could test for yourself about how much damage a dropped penny would do."

Still, don't try it.

Grief in the Clouds

Perhaps the building's darkest day was July 28, 1945, when a B-25, flying toward Newark in fog, slammed into the 78th and 79th floors. The crash killed three people on the plane and 11 in the building. The fuel tanks exploded, and an engine and part of the landing gear fell through an elevator shaft into the subbasement.

Grief has visited the building numerous other times. The lonesome death of 21-year-old Dovid Abramowitz, who leapt to his death from the Empire State Building on Feb. 2, was far from the first suicide in the building's history. But it was different from many others in that Mr. Abramowitz, who lived on the Lower East Side, bypassed the observatory and found his way to an office window on the 66th floor.

More than 30 people have used the building as a final place of contemplation before jumping to the parapets and then to the sidewalks below. Just weeks before the opening, a carpenter's helper who had once worked on the building jumped from the 78th floor. The first post-opening suicide occurred on Nov. 3, 1932. The man who died was carrying a note to his wife written on the back of a photograph. "My darling," it read. "This is a picture of my son, Arnim, which was taken in Astoria, L. I., June 4, 1930."

The man rode the elevator to the 86th floor, and as the doors opened, he dashed into the open air, jumping over an iron gate and off the ledge.

The suicides added up quickly in the 30's and 40's, prompting the building's guards to be constantly on watch for anxious or oddly behaving guests. As of 1947, 11 plainclothes security agents were in place, and in two months they thwarted five potential suicides over what was then a four-and-a-half-foot barrier. That December, a steel fence was installed that was thought to be "suicide-proof." It wasn't.

Before Mr. Abramowitz's death in February, the last jumping case was in 2004, when a man scaled the barrier fence, stood on the opposite ledge and spread his arms before jumping off. On the world's most public stage for suicide, his death was unusual for its anonymity. He carried no identification, and it was nearly a month before anyone learned his name.

Drawing Board Dreams

Many plans for the Empire State remained just that.

The most famous scheme, of course, was the dirigible landing. The building's designers believed that the tip of the spire would make a perfect docking place for dirigibles and other airships. "The directors of the Empire State, Inc., believe that in a comparatively short time the Zeppelin airships will establish trans-Atlantic, transcontinental and trans-Pacific lines," Al Smith said in 1929, announcing plans to build a 200-foot tall mooring mast.

The mast was constructed, but it saw little blimp traffic, and the idea was dropped. Not for lack of trying, however: In October 1931, an airship flying in from Holmes Airport in Jackson Heights, Queens, tried futilely for an hour to attach itself to the tower in order to pick up mail.

Four decades later, rivalry sparked another unrealized scheme. In the early 70's, when the Empire State's reign as the city's and nation's tallest building was challenged by the World Trade Center and the Sears Tower in Chicago, the Empire State architects presented sketches depicting ways to add 11 floors to the building.

The plan involved lopping off the 16 top stories and replacing them with larger and more modern office floors. Asked if the new segment would conform to the building's style, Robert W. Jones, vice president of Shreve, Lamb & Harmon, the original architects, said it wouldn't. "It's like Chartres," he said. "They built one tower in early Gothic and later they built another one in flamboyant Gothic."

Oh, Say, Can You See?

People throughout the New York metropolitan region often get a glimpse of the Empire State Building as part of their daily commute. But just how far is too far away to see the landmark?

"We always say 80 miles," said Lydia Ruth, a building spokeswoman. "If you were on top of the Pocono Mountains, you could see the building."

Brian Bossuyt, a spokesman for Camelback Ski Area, atop a Pocono mountain 73 miles away, disagrees. "You can't see it from here, per se, from Camelback," he said. "I don't even think you can see it with those coin-operated binoculars."

The expert on the subject would seem to be Gary Conte, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service. "From a meteorological perspective," Mr. Conte said, "typically, on a clear day with a fresh air mass in, you can actually see 15, maybe even 20 miles. But it all depends on where you're standing."

Fifteen or 20 miles would put one in locations like Far Rockaway, Queens.

But Mr. Conte may not be the last word on the subject.

"We can see the Empire State Building from Bear Mountain," said Susan Smith, the historian for Bear Mountain State Park in Rockland County, which is about 40 miles north of the Empire State Building. "From the top of Perkins Drive, you can see all the way down to Manhattan."


F. Y. I.
The Ever-Changing Lighting
By MICHAEL POLLAK

Q. I am fascinated by the ever-changing multicolored lighting on top of the Empire State Building. Could you tell me the schedule?

A. Only the highlights. Most gazers probably don't realize how often the lighting system changes and how many groups, causes, nations and holidays are honored. The building's Web site, www.esbnyc.com (http://www.esbnyc.com), lists 67 combinations of up to three colors that have been used. (Examples of color schemes and the subjects they have celebrated can be found atop the pages of this section.)

The possibilities are seemingly endless. For example, as one reads the colors from the bottom up, as a pedestrian would see them, lavender-lavender-white honors the anniversary of the Stonewall uprising. Yellow has celebrated the U.S. Open tennis tournament, among other topics. Purple-purple-gold honored the golden jubilee day of Queen Elizabeth II.

Just looking up won't tell you everything. Are you looking at red-blue-white? You could be seeing a commemoration of Philippine independence or the colors of the New York Rangers. Blue — just blue — has been used to commemorate more than a dozen subjects, including Unicef, Boys and Girls Clubs, child abuse prevention and Jazz at Lincoln Center.

If you want to light the building pink for Mom's birthday, sorry. Building policy does not allow lighting for commercial or corporate events, or personal celebrations, though requests are taken for nonprofit or charitable celebrations.

To avoid the risk to birds, which are attracted to the lights, the tower lights are turned off during spring and fall migration seasons and on some cloudy, humid or foggy nights, when large numbers of birds are seen flying near the building.

The Empire State Building has been lighted to some degree since November 1932, when a searchlight beacon alerted the public to Franklin D. Roosevelt's election as president. Colored lighting came in 1976.

Installed in each of the four faces of the topmost mast are four vertical banks of 11 eight-foot panels positioned one on top of another, for a total of 176 panels. A ring of 32 sodium vapor lights above the 102nd floor was installed in 1984 to create a golden halo effect around the top of the mast from dusk to dawn.

Q. When I was on the Empire State Building's observation deck, I got to wondering why the building stopped where it did. I've read that buildings could have been built much higher.

A. It's true; buildings could have gone higher. In 1956, Frank Lloyd Wright even sketched a design for a mile-high 528-story skyscraper in Illinois.

But the Empire State Building, to say nothing of Wright's behemoth, was limited by economic factors. As a building rises higher, more structural steel and bracing are required, lowering the amount of rentable space and increasing costs. While the Empire State Building was being planned, the American Institute of Steel Construction issued a report estimating that a skyscraper's rate of economic return declined if it went higher than 63 stories.

But perhaps the major factor limiting height was the elevators. As floors went higher, more passengers had to be served and the elevator cables were longer. Wider shafts were needed, reducing rentable space.

Balancing speed with comfort is a juggling act. The acceleration of elevators has to be tolerable for riders' knees and stomachs. The Empire State elevators travel as fast as 1,000 feet a minute.

For the record, the Empire State Building stands 1,250 feet tall. A broadcasting antenna adds 204 feet to the overall height, making it 1,454 feet. An earlier antenna, which stood from 1951 to 1984, was 18 feet taller.

E-mail: fyi@nytimes.com


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Copyright 2006 The New York Times Company

Kris
April 23rd, 2006, 04:00 PM
April 23, 2006

75 Years
Crashing to Earth, Again and Again
By MAX PAGE

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The body of Evelyn McHale, 23, atop a limousine after she jumped to her death from the observation platform of the Empire State Building.

SHE was right on target. Soaring from a thousand feet up, she hit the bull's-eye, landing on top of the roof of the car, her long legs demurely crossed. I couldn't take my eyes off her.

Before I had bought into the romance of the Empire State building, I knew it from a 1947 photograph of a suicide reprinted in "The Best of Life." In the image of this sleeping beauty, I saw not only unrequited love but also the skyscraper's sheer gravitational power.

The woman's fall was an homage to the Empire State Building, grisly performance art for the symbol of the modern metropolis, and vivid evidence that because of the building's size and pre-eminence, it has been a target for destruction by creators of popular culture over three-quarters of a century, and a place that could also, in turn, destroy the soul.

Those who attempted suicide understood. The magnet of death and the thrill of desire have been partners in the life of the Empire State Building since the moment it was created.

Like nearly every other New Yorker (more than one million people looked out from the observatory in the first year of the building's existence), F. Scott Fitzgerald was lured to the top, for a literal uplift during the depth of the Depression — and ruined by the experience. "Full of vaunting pride," he wrote in his 1932 essay "My Lost City," "the New Yorker had climbed here and seen with dismay what he had never suspected, that the city was not the endless succession of canyons that he had supposed but that it had limits." With that vision, he wrote, came "the awful realization that New York was a city after all and not a universe, the whole shining edifice that he had reared in his imagination came crashing to the ground."

More than two decades later, in 1954, the evangelist Asa Allen dreamed of standing atop the building, watching a black cloud of divine retribution rolling in from the west to destroy the inhabitants of the sinful city. "I was amazed that the spirit of the Lord should so move me, there atop the Empire State Building. Why should I feel such a surge of his spirit and power there?"

The view was like a magic potion; once you took it in, you could never be the same.

Despair was hardly the only response. As E. B. White wrote in 1949, the building "managed to reach the highest point in the sky at the lowest moment of the Depression."

"The Empire State Building," he continued, "shot 1,250 feet into the air when it was madness to put out as much as six inches of new growth."

But even before it opened, in April 1931, the skyscraper inspired the first depressed New Yorker to jump to his death from it. Within the year, it also had inspired fantasies of the building's own end. "Somehow we know by instinct that outsize buildings cast the shadow of their own destruction before them," W. G. Sebald wrote just before the attacks of Sept. 11, "and are designed from the first with an eye to their later existence as ruins." Though Americans like to focus on the building as a hopeful symbol amid the despair of the Depression, the culture wasted no time in taking aim at this beloved target.

Within two years, King Kong had broken loose from his chains, tramped through Times Square and headed directly to the highest peak he could find. He too took a leap (albeit involuntary) from the tower. (That fall was cut from the film, supposedly because the prop of Kong looked too unimpressive falling next to the building, but maybe because the image brought the fantasy uncomfortably close to home.)

The other New York disaster film of 1933, a so-called lost work titled "Deluge," was the first to take down the building. In the film, an enormous earthquake unleashes a tidal wave that destroys all New York; the city's final collapse is signified by the collapse of the world's tallest and most solid structure. So powerful were these images, and so costly to make, that the scene of the building's collapse was reused in several later films, among them "S.O.S. Tidal Wave" in 1939 and the late 1940's series "King of the Rocketmen."

By the end of the 1930's, the building had gained a muscular defender not prone to falling from high places. In the first Superman movie — actually, a 10-minute television short — a mad scientist directs his Electrothanasia-Ray at the city's tallest building. Superman rushes to catch the swaying tower — a stand-in for the Empire State Building — before it collapses, and thus saves the city.

During the Cold War, scientists, policymakers and nervous filmmakers used the building to illustrate the horror of nuclear war. In the 1964 film "Fail-Safe," for example, Henry Fonda, playing the president, decides that he must destroy New York as compensation for the accidental destruction of Moscow. A bomber is sent over Manhattan, soaring over the Empire State Building as it drops its destructive load.

Others took a far lighter attitude toward the building. "Mars Attacks," the popular cards issued in 1962, featured views of invading Martians making a mess of the city, splitting the Empire State Building in two. More than four decades later, in 1996, those aliens would be back in "Independence Day," hovering over the building before blasting it into extinction.

The skyscraper is turned into a shish kebab stick for Roald Dahl's Giant Peach, and in David Macaulay's book "Unbuilding," it is taken apart, girder by girder. Before 9/11, when joking about a fallen skyscraper was less painful, the cartoonist Matt Groening depicted perhaps the most insulting of Empire State debacles: New York in the year 3000, where only the top of the building sticks out above a new street, and the bulk of it lies below, in a museum of old New York.

Even after 9/11, when the Empire State Building once again bore the burden of being the tallest skyscraper in New York, it continued to be a target. In the new millennium, when fears of self-inflicted environmental disaster replaced the fear of nuclear war (something had to), it was a frozen Empire State Building that signified the city's end in the global-warming thriller "The Day After Tomorrow."

Every era has found a use in destroying the Empire State Building. Yet when it comes to harming the place, there is a curious delicacy: although the structure is an obvious target in a disaster movie, no one seems to want it destroyed violently. Truly spectacular destruction scenes have been largely reserved for other buildings. The World Trade Center towers were engulfed in "Meteor" (1979); the Chrysler Building was summarily beheaded in "Godzilla" (1998); Rockefeller Center was decimated in "Invasion USA" (1952). But few images show the Empire State Building actually crashing down.

TO be a target is surely an honor. When New York is no longer destroyed, on film, in flight-simulator software, video games and paintings — that will be a sign that the city no longer dominates America's, and the world's, imagination. But maybe some buildings are just out of bounds.

In "Sector 7," a wordless children's book by David Wiesner, a young boy on a school trip atop the Empire State Building befriends a cloud. Before he knows it, he has followed the tradition of leaping from the top of the skyscraper. Instead of falling, however, he is carried to the Grand Central Terminal of cloud making. After revolting against the strict and unimaginative cloud makers, the boy is gently returned to the observatory deck by his new cloud-friend.

But he is changed: now he literally floats on a cloud as he descends with his class and walks out onto the sidewalk. There he finds an awestruck city, looking up, not for suicides, but at the clouds shaped like beautiful fish, manta rays, octopus and squid.

Virtually all of the four million who yearly rise to the top of the Empire State Building come down safely. But each one is changed by the experience.

Max Page's book "The City's End: Two Centuries of Fantasies, Fears, and Premonitions of New York's Destruction" will be published next year by Yale University Press.

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A scene from the movie "Independence Day."


75 Years
Forecast: Mostly Sunny
By ALEX MINDLIN

THE Empire State Building came into the world amid a hubbub of predictions. Al Smith, its cheerleader and public face, prophesied that the area below 40th Street would become the city's new office district. (He was wrong.) A group described as "leading builders and real estate men" told The New York Times that the building would hold the country's height record for years to come. (They were right.) The Times, in an editorial, forecast the end of public tolerance for "architecture that is cheap or mean."

In that spirit, three experts on tall buildings were asked to offer their predictions about how the Empire State Building will be regarded when it passes its 100th anniversary, in 2031.

In addition to their official credentials, all three have a special affection for the place. Carol Willis, who lives within blocks of the building, describes its presence as "my top 10 reasons for choosing the apartment," while John Tauranac is, among other things, the owner of a six-foot-tall backlit steel sculpture of the building.

John Tauranac
Author of "The Empire State Building: The Making of a Landmark"

Can we go 75 years back, to show how easy it is to prognosticate and be wrong?

There was a wonderful publisher of guidebooks called Moses King. In a book that he put out in 1908, he started with a drawing of New York as the "Cosmopolis of the Future." Casting off the tops of these fantastic buildings are Jules Verne-like contraptions, part dirigible, part airplane, part helicopter. They have signs on them saying "Europe," "Panama Canal."

In 1931, when the Empire State Building was opened, there was a belief that office construction would never reach north of 59th Street; the assumption was that there would be a terrific spillback. The promoters of the Empire State Building were firmly convinced that their neighborhood would fill up. But that spillback effect never really took place.

Who knows? Maybe the Empire State Building will be a condominium in 25 years. Who would have thought that the Plaza Hotel, one of the city's most beloved institutions, would be in the process of being converted to condos? Who would have thought that the Met Life tower would be converted to residential use?

Carol Willis
Founder and director of the Skyscraper Museum

When it turns 100, I think that the building will look as glorious as it does today, because it's protected as a landmark, so its fabric won't change. I doubt the surrounding area will change dramatically, either. Most of the buildings are already built pretty close to the maximum of what the current zoning allows, so there's not much room to develop.

Fortunately, there won't be anything to challenge the pre-eminence of the Empire State Building, which has always been so magnificent because its stands alone, in isolation, unlike the cluster of towers around Grand Central, or in the Financial District.

As a historian, I think that in the next 25 years, the building will be unchanged in its essential identity. That's important in the longer sense, because Manhattan is a 20th-century creation, the way the Paris we see today is essentially a 19th-century urban scene. New York is characterized by great buildings like the Chrysler and the Empire State that give it a sense of place and uniqueness. And we will increasingly appreciate that, the way Romans have learned to live inside their buildings, the way that boutiques adapt to Renaissance palaces.

Neal Bascomb
Author of "Higher: A Historic Race to the Sky and the Making of a City," about the contest to build the city's tallest building

The Empire State Building today is essentially what it was 75 years ago, which was the lone pinnacle in the New York skyline. It was the building you saw at a distance; it personified what we think of as New York. With the loss of the World Trade Center, that is the case again.

Twenty-five years from now, people will look at the Empire State Building as the classic New York skyscraper. They'll say, "That's the first true skyscraper." The way skyscrapers are being built now, they're almost fantastic, particularly in Asia. You look at the Empire State Building, and it looks so simple, almost like a pyramid.

It will still be the place people have to go to. People will always want to say, "Yes, I went to New York, and I went to the top of the Empire State Building, and it was marvelous." Even if they build a 2,000-foot tower somewhere else.

Copyright 2006 The New York Times Company

Kris
April 23rd, 2006, 04:13 PM
April 23, 2006
75 Years
Look! Down on the Ground!
By JOHN FREEMAN GILL

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RONETTE RILEY, an architect who occupies the highest office in New York City, believes that the Empire State Building is located in an uncommonly harmonious spot, at least from a feng shui perspective.

"My feng shui master calls it the epicenter of Manhattan," explained Ms. Riley, who is the sole tenant on the 80th floor, the highest level at which office space exists. "Because if New York is the center of the universe, the Empire State Building is the center of New York.

"Unfortunately," she added, "the neighborhood is just starting to catch up."

Indeed. At street level, 960 feet below Ms. Riley's aerie, the surrounding blocks are a honky-tonk hodgepodge of commerce, a chaotic no-man's land thronged with sightseers and sharp-elbowed shoppers. On any given day, tour buses disgorge bewildered-looking Germans outside nearby hotels, workers wearing sad-looking cardboard sandwich boards jab clothing-sale leaflets at passers-by, and Long Island commuters dash toward Penn Station, weaving among shoppers headed for the Broadway malls and clutches of Koreans heading to 24-hour restaurants on West 32nd Street.

For all its clamor and bustle, the neighborhood around 34th Street and Fifth Avenue is as oddly anonymous as the tower at its center is celebrated. Even the area's name is open to question. Some maps call it Midtown South, but that is hardly a term that rolls off the tongue or conveys a distinctive character.

"I'm a native New Yorker, and I never even thought about what to call this neighborhood because it's got no clear identity in my mind," said Douglas Mancini, a red-aproned bartender at Keens Steakhouse on West 36th Street off Avenue of the Americas. "What is it? It's not Murray Hill, and it's not quite Midtown, is it?"

When the Empire State Building was constructed 75 years ago, replacing the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel, the soaring office tower was an incongruous newcomer to what at the time was the city's most important retail district.

Fifth Avenue was the city's white-glove shopping boulevard, beginning with the full-block B. Altman department store, which stood cater-corner to the Empire State Building. From there, the luxury shopping strip stretched north up Fifth Avenue, including two dazzling retail palaces designed by Stanford White, one on East 36th Street that was occupied by Russeks Furs, and one on East 37th Street that was home to Tiffany & Co.

"It was a curious site, the Empire State Building, for an office building," said David Garrard Lowe, author of "Art Deco New York." "It moved into this rather luxurious neighborhood, because you go a little farther to the east and you're in Murray Hill, so it was suddenly a huge office building in the middle of the luxury trades and luxury housing."

One block west of the Empire State, meanwhile, stood three great middle-class shopping emporiums: Macy's, Saks and Gimbels. These local businesses greeted their new Art Deco neighbor with open arms.

"The day it opened was sort of a local holiday," said John Tauranac, author of "The Empire State Building: The Making of a Landmark." "The streets were closed to traffic, there were mobs of people, and all of the merchants were delighted because they thought they were going to get more business."

Things didn't quite work out as planned. The building's developers, Mr. Tauranac said, assumed that once the rapid development around Grand Central was complete, "commerce would move south from 42nd Street and encircle them, and that never really happened."

Perhaps the most striking result of this development — or lack of development — is that the area around the Empire State Building remains startlingly similar to the way it was the day the building opened.

"It's incredible to think how little the neighborhood has changed in terms of the structures that are there," Mr. Tauranac said. "If you look on the north side of 34th Street, beginning on the east side of Madison Avenue and going all the way to the west side of Broadway, to Macy's, the buildings are all the same as they were 75 years ago."

The same is largely true of the south side of 34th Street, he added, as well as the block of 33rd Street west of Fifth Avenue, where only one new apartment building has gone up.

The luxury trade headed north up Fifth Avenue in the decades after the Empire State Building was put up, but otherwise the types of companies now doing business in the area have much in common with those in operation during the skyscraper's early years. Saks and Gimbels have been replaced by malls housing other middle-class retailers, while the side streets in the 30's west of Fifth Avenue are home to storefront wholesalers showcasing garment trimmings and costume jewelry.

The neighborhood has rebounded from the dark days of the 1980's, when prostitutes loitered outside the Morgan Library on East 36th Street and the magnificent French Renaissance-style Hotel Martinique on West 32nd Street and Broadway was a crack-infested welfare hotel. The block of 32nd Street west of Fifth Avenue thrives as the 24-hour main drag of Koreatown; the Martinique has been restored and is a Holiday Inn.

THE neighborhood is even experiencing a residential influx that could be its most significant change since the arrival of the Empire State Building. A 40-story rental building recently opened on West 31st Street near Fifth Avenue, and a 50-story green-glass condominium is rising near 33rd Street and Fifth Avenue.

As new high-rises go up around the Empire State Building, could the skyscraper's enviable feng shui be compromised? "That doesn't affect me," said Ms. Riley, who occupies the highest office in the land. "I'm above it all."

Copyright 2006 The New York Times Company

Scruffy88
April 24th, 2006, 11:53 AM
[quote=Kris]April 23, 2006

75 Years
Crashing to Earth, Again and Again
By MAX PAGE

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2006/04/23/nyregion/thecity/scar450.jpg
The body of Evelyn McHale, 23, atop a limousine after she jumped to her death from the observation platform of the Empire State Building.

WOW. She looks like shes napping. unharmed. Morbid but fascinating

Scruffy88
April 28th, 2006, 01:02 AM
I dont know if this would be the correct thread for this, maybe under news but an interesting event today.

http://i25.photobucket.com/albums/c81/Scruffy88/a11.jpg
I was in midtown and ended up at the Wendy's on 5th across the street from the Empire State Building. When I came out all of a sudden there were crowds all looking up and pointing towards the top of the tower. Police cars started to arrive and shut down 33rd street. Fire trucks started to arrive. The word on the street was it was either a suicide jumper had jumped or was hanging out getting ready to jump. More and more people gathered. Mob mentality. One person looks up, they all do

http://i25.photobucket.com/albums/c81/Scruffy88/a12.jpg
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I had my binoculars on me (dont ask) but could see nothing. Seemed like a hoax to me that a couple hundred people fell for. A new small crowd was gathering around a pair of swedes who were showing off footage from their video camera. I checked it out, and they were on the observation deck and got first class footage of a guy hanging onto the observation deck railings from the other end, hanging over the edge of the building. Police and other people were holding onto to him through the bars and then they were evacuated off the tower. Thrilling stuff

UPDATE: Turns out it was a stunt, this guy really wanted to parachute off the Empire State so he bought himself a fat suit to hide his parachute and wore old man makeup. Got up there, took off his stuff in the bathroom and made a dash for the edge. The security gaurds got wise to him early and intercepted him and hung onto him through the bars while he tried in vain to push off so he can fall. They hung onto him until cops arrived, removed part of the railing and arrested him.

Only in NY

lofter1
April 28th, 2006, 10:07 AM
Man Arrested For Attempt To Parachute Off Empire State Building

http://www.ny1.com/ny1/content/images/live/97/192734.jpg

NY 1 (http://www.ny1.com/ny1/content/index.jsp?stid=1&aid=58985)
April 28, 2006

A California man is facing charges today after police thwarted his attempt to base jump off the Empire State Building.

Jeb Corliss, 30, is charged with reckless endangerment and criminal trespass, among other charges. Police say he came from Malibu intending to parachute off the Empire State Building Thursday.

A police officer was able to stop Corliss after he was spotted climbing over the fence on the 86th floor observatory deck. He was arrested at the scene.

Before he changed into his parachute gear in the bathroom, he was dressed in a disguise – a wig and a professional fat suit.

Copyright © 2006 NY1 News

lofter1
April 28th, 2006, 10:20 AM
Cops stop fall guy

Foil Empire State jumper

http://www.nydailynews.com/ips_rich_content/134-home1.JPG

BY CELESTE KATZ, OREN YANIV and LEO STANDORA
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITERS
NY DAILY NEWS (http://www.nydailynews.com/front/story/412882p-349076c.html)
April 28, 2006

Would-be Empire State Building jumper and professional dare-taker Jeb Corliss hangs precariouisly above midtown as cops and security guards hold onto him through railing of observation deck, preventing him from making his leap. In the first moments, guards seem barely able to keep Corliss (below) from making the jump.

http://www.nydailynews.com/ips_rich_content/374-empire2.JPG

http://www.nydailynews.com/ips_rich_content/637-empireperp.JPG

Towering legacy (http://www.nydailynews.com/front/story/412882p-349076c.html#q1)

A dopey daredevil hellbent on parachuting off the Empire State Building was plucked from the brink of disaster yesterday in a breathtaking drama that played out on a narrow ledge more than 1,000 feet above city streets.

As scores of tourists watched in stunned disbelief, TV stunt show star Jeb Corliss ripped off an old fat man disguise - and scaled the 10-foot security fence around the 86th-floor observation deck.

He was precariously perched on a ledge far above 33rd St. and ready to jump, when security guards and cops reached through the fence and handcuffed the dodging dodo to the bars as witnesses gasped, cameras clicked and videotape rolled.

"Dude, you guys are going to kill me!" Corliss screamed as he tried to wriggle free. "You guys are going to kill me right now.

"Let me go!"

The 30-year-old Californian wore a helmet fitted with a camera, likely hoping to film his 1,050-foot plunge - with no regard for the safety of people on the streets below - for "Stunt Junkies," a Discovery Channel show he hosts.

But cops and security guards, who had been tipped the death-wish scheme by someone claiming to be worried about Corliss, weren't going to allow his latest attempt at twisted glory.

He had snuck into the storied skycraper around 4:30 p.m. wearing a $15,000 fat suit, a gray wig and a latex mask with a gray beard.

But once on the observation deck, he went into a bathroom, tore off the suit to reveal a parachute underneath, dashed to the curled railing and climbed it.

But he was slowed down by security guard Kevin Downes, who had chased him from the bathroom, giving cops and other security personnel precious seconds to leap into action.

"He was resistant. He tried to push off with his feet. He was fighting with us to get off," said Timothy Donohue, a building manager.

One unidentified woman was so upset she thrust a fistful of cash at Corliss and tried to bribe him to come back.

Donohue and others finally got a good grip on Corliss' harness before cuffing him.

"He wasn't going without me and I really didn't want to go for the ride," said Donohue.

"It's New York City, it's rush hour. It is not the time to jump off buildings."

ESU cops with bolt cutters eventually snapped the cuffs, removed a portion of the fence and pulled Corliss back to safety, ending a 15-minute struggle. He kept his latex mask on until it was clear the only way he was reaching terra firma was in an elevator.

Outside the building, Corliss was grinning like a fool as cops - who had rushed to the top terror target - hauled him away. Meanwhile, Downes was taken to Bellevue Hospital with head and ankle injuries.

Corliss charged last night with a number of crimes including reckless endangerment, assault and resisting arrest.

"I wouldn't describe him as a daredevil," said NYPD Deputy Inspector James McCarthy. "I would describe him as an individual who obviously showed a depraved indifference for human life.

"In the worst case scenario, his parachute doesn't open and he kills a number of people walking by."

Still, the afternoon drama at New York's tallest building gave visitors a show they'll never forget.

Dennis Hook, 68, an English tourist, said, he thought the nail-biting spectacle "was a joke at the beginning. There was someone in a King Kong suit walking around so it looked like a show. It was unbelievable."

Dutch tourists Edu De Neve, 57, his wife, Garda, and sons Mattijs, 27, and Guido, 25, were stunned by the sight of about 20 cops racing onto the observation deck to help subdue Corliss.

"It was something to see," said Garda De Neve, 57, shaking her head in wonder.

Although she had been reluctant to come to the U.S. due to terrorism fears and the incident yesterday was less than a treat for the Dutch family, she said of her first visit to New York, "I love it here."

Corliss is no stranger to risky business.

He's chuted off the Palace Hotel here, the Skylon Tower in Niagara falls as well as the giant Petronas Towers in Malaysia.

His antics on the Empire State may have been timed to bring attention to the 102-story building's 75th birthday Monday.

"It was absolutely unreal," said a visibly shaken Mark Skelton, who is chaperoning a high school band from Cleveland, Ga. on a visit here. "You'd never think this kind of thing would happen."

Skelton's daughter, Erin, 15, couldn't help but giggle: "I think it all was pretty cool."

Towering legacy

The Empire State Building, which turns 75 Monday, has seen its share of triumph, tragedy - and stunts.

Here's a look at some key events:

MAY 1, 1931 - The world's tallest building opens, reaffirming American ingenuity in the depths of the Great Depression.
MARCH 2, 1933 - The blockbuster film "King Kong" seals the skyscraper's place in the world's imagination.
JULY 28, 1945 - A B-25 bomber plows into the 79th floor of the building in dense fog, killing 14 people.
APRIL 24, 1986 - Two British men parachute from the 86th floor observation deck. One got into a taxi, chute and all, but another was caught when he got snagged on a traffic light.
FEB. 23, 1997 - A gunman opens fire on the observation deck, killing one person and wounding six others before turning the weapon on himself.
OCT. 24, 1998 - Two daredevils escape after they parachute from the observation deck.
At least 35 people have killed themselves by plunging from the observation deck.All contents © 2006 Daily News, L.P.

lofter1
April 28th, 2006, 10:28 AM
DAREDEVIL NABBED ON BRINK OF JUMP

NY_POST (http://www.nypost.com/news/regionalnews/63009.htm)
By TODD VENEZIA, ERIKA MARTINEZ and HASANI GITTENS
April 28, 2006


http://www.nypost.com/photos/news04282006003.jpg
Photo: Steven Bryant

HIGH-KICKING: Daredevil Jeb Corliss
tries to wriggle free to perform his
Empire State Building jump yesterday -
but can’t shake the iron-fisted cop
gripping his leg.
(http://www.nypost.com/efriend/efriend.htm?url=http://www.nypost.com/news/regionalnews/63009.htm)
April 28, 2006 -- A daredevil used a fat suit to sneak a parachute up to the observation deck of the Empire State Building for a spectacular stunt jump yesterday - but authorities thwarted his death-defying scheme by grabbing him as he prepared to plummet to the packed Midtown streets...

Fabrizio
April 28th, 2006, 10:33 AM
Scruffy: that´s a nice photo-report.

I first went up there when I was a little kid in 1965. King Kong had made it to television....so going up to the top of the Empire State Building was a HUGE deal for a kid. From the observation deck, I remember my aunt pointing out the site of the demolished Penn Station....and a giant sign on Macy´s roof that said "world´s largest department store". My aunt sang "give my regards to Broadway, rememember me to HERALD SQUARE" pointing it out down below. We went up to the very top floor...in a cramped room....I can still remember that. It was closed to the public long ago...so I´m glad we were able to do it. Afterwards we had hamburgers at a place called "The Artful Burger". When I was a kid, burgers were burgers....an "Artful" burger wasn´t something I was used too. We then went up to the Cloisters....I still remember the subway ride....with the Preparation H advertisements and my cousin explaining to me that it was for pimples.
----------------------

NYatKNIGHT
April 28th, 2006, 10:39 AM
Top notch reporting, Scruffy. Those tourists got a real treat.

dtolman
April 28th, 2006, 11:28 AM
Four decades later, rivalry sparked another unrealized scheme. In the early 70's, when the Empire State's reign as the city's and nation's tallest building was challenged by the World Trade Center and the Sears Tower in Chicago, the Empire State architects presented sketches depicting ways to add 11 floors to the building.

The plan involved lopping off the 16 top stories and replacing them with larger and more modern office floors. Asked if the new segment would conform to the building's style, Robert W. Jones, vice president of Shreve, Lamb & Harmon, the original architects, said it wouldn't. "It's like Chartres," he said. "They built one tower in early Gothic and later they built another one in flamboyant Gothic."


I'm curious - are there any images out there of their plans for lopping off the top of the building and replacing it?

BigMac
May 1st, 2006, 09:49 AM
Gothamist
May 1, 2006

Happy Birthday, Empire State Building

http://www.gothamist.com/attachments/Jen%20Chung/2005_10_topofrock1.jpg

Posted by Jen Chung

The Empire State Building (http://www.esbnyc.com/) turns 75 today, as glamorous as ever. From being a romantic setting (http://www.nydailynews.com/front/story/413751p-349782c.html) to one where wacky people try to do wackier things (http://www.gothamist.com/archives/2006/04/28/thwarted_empire.php), it's still one of the most exciting places in the city. Tonight, the lights will be white, as they were all white when lights were first turned on by President Herbert Hoover (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/04/29/AR2006042900820.html).

Wikipedia on the Empire State Building (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Empire_State_Building). And photographs from the New York Public Library of its building (http://www.nypl.org/research/chss/spe/art/photo/hinex/empire/empire.html). Plus, two fun Empire State Building toy kits: In wood (http://www.funtocollect.com/empirestatepuzzlemedium.html) and metal (http://www.fatbraintoys.com/toy_companies/brio_corporation/erector_set_empire_state_building.cfm).

2003-2006 Gothamist LLC.

Ptarmigan
May 8th, 2006, 12:20 AM
The Empire State Building is a cool building. It is quintenssential New York.

aminuet
May 8th, 2006, 12:40 AM
I don't live in NYC and I've only been working there for six months... but is it true that you can't take photographs in the subways?

lofter1
May 8th, 2006, 02:10 AM
You're sort of allowed to -- but in rare instances you might get questioned by an Officer of the Law.

ArchiveNYC
May 13th, 2006, 08:25 PM
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michelle1
May 13th, 2006, 09:31 PM
Nice images. World’s #1 building with a classic masonry facade.

antinimby
May 14th, 2006, 02:33 AM
Yes, a very powerful iconic building it is.

I wonder when it'll be the next to convert to condos.

stache
May 14th, 2006, 05:13 AM
It's got the right layout for that...

Dagrecco82
May 22nd, 2006, 08:03 PM
:DShow to go until 2 a.m. at Empire State Bldg.



The city doesn't go to bed at midnight, and neither will the Empire State Building,
after extending observatory hours to 2 a.m. this summer in celebration of the skyscraper's
75th anniversary. Beginning June 22, the last elevator to the 86th- and 102nd-floor
observatories will depart at 1:15 a.m.
Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays until Sept. 10.
The observatories normally close at midnight, with the last elevator leaving at 11:15 p.m.
"In a word, it's magical," said the Empire State Building's Robert Zorn.
"The lights of the city are still aglow. The difference between night and day up there is tremendous.
This will afford visitors and locals
the ability to enjoy that spectacular view."
Officials hope the extended hours will bring more people to New York's tallest building,
which already draws 3.5 million visitors a year.
"It's not just a landmark for New York, it's an icon around the world," Zorn said.
"The building may be 75 years old, but it's actually a very modern building, a world-class observatory."
The ride to the 86th floor costs $16, with an additional $14 to go to the 102nd.



http://www.nydailynews.com/news/local/story/419888p-354530c.html

MrShakespeare
June 6th, 2006, 12:54 PM
From the WSJ:

There was a great photo in the newspaper which has the WTC towers in the background. But the online version is only a thumbnail, and is not worth posting becuase of it's small size...

***

A Soaring Achievement

The Empire State Building, now 75, became an icon in record time. Here's its story.

By JOHN TAURANAC
June 3, 2006; Page P14

I recently gave a talk at the Museum of the City of New York to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Empire State Building. I started by asking "Who painted 'The Night Watch'?" A chorus of "Rembrandt" rang out. I then asked who had designed New York City's most famous building, an icon of both the city and the nation, and I heard ... nothing.

For the record, the architects were Richmond H. Shreve and William F. Lamb, who were joined by Arthur Loomis Harmon to form Shreve, Lamb & Harmon. They were given a juicy plum when the building was announced in September 1929, but it came with one string attached. A tradition in New York had commercial leases beginning on May 1 or Oct. 1. If a building was not open for business on either of those dates, renting would limp along until the next season. They were given until May 1, 1931 -- 20 months.

Shreve, Lamb & Harmon considered themselves modernists. But their notion of modernism was a building that was both erected and operated efficiently. If it looked good, so much the better, and this building did.

Almost overnight, the Empire State Building was declared a masterpiece. The Architectural League awarded its medal of honor to Lamb for his "masterful treatment of an office building." For the building's "noble simplicity," the New York Chapter of the American Institute of Architects awarded the firm its medal of honor. For architectural excellence, the Fifth Avenue Association awarded the building its gold medal.

The building's primary backer was John J. Raskob, formerly the chief financial officer of General Motors and, in 1928, Democratic Party chairman. His front man was Alfred E. Smith, the former governor of New York -- the Empire State -- and losing Democratic nominee for the presidency in 1928.

Their original plan was for a 65-story building, then for an 80-story, or 1,000-foot building. Otis Elevator Co. said that anything taller was impossible lest the elevator cables collapse under their own weight. But when the Chrysler Building reached 1,048 feet, Raskob couldn't have Walter Chrysler upstage him. A five-story "penthouse" reached by a shuttle elevator was added, pushing the building to 1,050 feet. But what if a developer built a skyscraper two feet taller?

Raskob and Smith decided to add a 200-foot-high dirigible mooring mast. It was the looniest scheme since the Tower of Babel, but it gave the building one of the most dramatic crowns that ever a building wore. And at 1,250 feet, the skyscraper held the world's tallest laurels until the first World Trade Center tower opened in 1972 at 110 stories, or 1,350 feet.

The construction operation was an assembly line, only the product was stationary -- the workers were on the move. The ironworkers threw steel higher and faster than anybody had ever dreamed, and the other crafts kept abreast of the pace -- a record-breaking 4½ floors a week. The American Society of Civil Engineers has declared the building not only "one of the seven greatest engineering achievements in American history," but "one of the top engineering monuments of the Millennium."

The facing was limestone, which was ostensibly profligate, but laying finished brick is time consuming, and most of the limestone's edges could be rough cut because stainless-steel mullions would run up the sides of the building to cover the joins. Windows were installed that came flush with the facing, again abrogating the need for finished edges on the limestone. And pre-cast aluminum spandrels would cover common brick between the top of one window and the bottom of the one above.

There is a marvelous play of light and shadow on the building, in part because the architects designed bays. But the bays were not just for aesthetics. In standard buildings, there are four corner offices per floor. On stories six to 20 of the Empire State Building, there are 12 per floor, and for most floors no fewer than eight.

Another glory of the design is that from the sixth floor up, the building gradually narrows. It wasn't simply to conform to the zoning law or for aesthetics. Elevators and service areas were in the core of the building, with offices ringing them. There are seven elevator banks in the building, one bank serving the third to seventh floors, a second serving the seventh to 18th, and so on. As elevator banks dropped away, the building slimmed proportionately.

The building planned in the boom of the '20s opened in the bust of the '30s. That partly explains the speed of construction and the financial windfall. With little competition, deliveries were punctual, and prices were frequently negotiable. The rental agent's leasing standards were not. A building that opened at 50% occupancy was off to a decent start. The building opened at less than 25%. By November 1931, it was dubbed the "Empty State Building."

The skyscraper endured the Depression, due in part to its observatories. To this day, natives and tourists alike line up to see the view from the top -- "The closest thing to heaven in New York," as Deborah Kerr says in "An Affair to Remember." Last year's count was 3.8 million visitors.

I have always loved the building, and I still don't fully understand why. Its form has always seemed delicate, almost huggable, its splendor and lift, its very being a magical presence.

***

ArchiveNYC
June 29th, 2006, 06:38 PM
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NYguy
June 29th, 2006, 07:50 PM
Excellent photos. I'll add some of my personal favorites of the greatest
skyscraper ever built (arguably, Chrysler could be called NY's greatest, but
the ESB truly holds the title)...


http://www.pbase.com/nyguy/image/62683573/medium.jpg


http://www.pbase.com/nyguy/image/62683573/large.jpg


http://www.pbase.com/nyguy/image/62683594/medium.jpg


http://www.pbase.com/nyguy/image/62683594/large.jpg


http://www.pbase.com/nyguy/image/62683639/medium.jpg


http://www.pbase.com/nyguy/image/62683639/large.jpg


http://www.pbase.com/nyguy/image/62683597/large.jpg

BigMac
July 13th, 2006, 09:36 AM
New York Times
July 13, 2006

After Midnight, Romance on the Observation Deck

By EMILY VASQUEZ

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2006/07/13/nyregion/13empire600.1.jpg
With family and tourist groups gone, and despite the glare of lights from the souvenir shop, couples enjoy romantic moments in the last two hours before the deck closes.

Midnight at the Empire State Building. Gone are the long lines, the strollers and the tour bus crowds. Instead, at 1,050 feet, with rain clouds colored pink, romance abounds.

With the lights of Wall Street glimmering in the distance, Kevin Livingston, 28, of Queens, takes advantage of the setting.

He turns to Charlotte Harrison, 27, who is also from Queens and who has been dating him for three weeks. “Will you be my girlfriend?” he asks. Then he declares that even New York City’s lights have nothing on her.

On the east deck another couple, more serious, are locked in a tight embrace.

Yes, she has just whispered. Yes, of course she will be his wife.

The couple, Aisha, 25, and Imran, 32, who would give only their first names, met on Naseeb.com, a Muslim social networking site. Six months’ worth of e-mail messages later — Aisha from Montreal, Imran from London — they made plans to meet for the first time in New York.

Now, atop the Empire State Building, they share their first kiss, and Imran whispers the proposal in Aisha’s ear.

While many of the city’s most popular attractions — the Statue of Liberty, the Bronx Zoo — have been closed for hours, the Empire State still beckons. And this year the arrival of warmer nights coincides with the pushing back of the observation deck’s closing, to 2 a.m. from midnight on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays through Sept. 9. Tickets, $16 for adults, may be bought anytime during the day on which they are to be used.

At that late — or early — hour in the summer, the platform becomes a lovers’ lane for couples in search of a late-night view. Their idea, of course, is nothing new — from “An Affair to Remember’’ to “Sleepless in Seattle,’’ the platform has been a classic stage.

How many proposals could the observation deck have seen in its 75 years?

Mira Akerman, 34, who flew to New York from Sweden for her wedding, has come to the top for a postnuptial kiss with new husband, Martin Nilsson, 33. Running out on the deck, still in her white wedding dress, she explains, “It’s such a New York thing to do.”

Hector Rosado, 43, a security guard on duty, says the atmosphere 86 floors up definitely changes at night.

“With the night lights it’s different,” he says. “They enjoy the view. I mean they really enjoy it.”

Two more New Yorkers, Adam Bogan, 30, a financial adviser at J. P. Morgan, and his companion, Sarah Yatto, 27, who works at Bloomingdale’s, stumbled upon the still-open attraction after dinner in the neighborhood.

“It’s dark, it’s foggy, it’s kind of smoky — the city looks mysterious,” Ms. Yatto says, looking uptown from underneath their shared umbrella.

Mr. Bogan agrees. “If there was a bar, we’d be here all the time,” he says.

Still, not everyone finds it romantic. Naomi Pate, a student at the University of Georgia, heads inside to search for someone in her party who seems to have disappeared.

“I think he’s afraid of heights,” she says, alone for the moment on the east deck.

Students visiting from George Washington University, Jay Bhatt, 19, and Priya Patel, 20, look toward Times Square.

“It’s just so peaceful,” Mr. Bhatt says. “You have time to think.”

According to Bob Zorn, director of the observatory, guards working at night had been turning visitors away at midnight for years — people who had come from Broadway shows or a romantic dinner. The new closing hours are an experiment, to see how much interest there will be. “If it’s successful as we feel it will be,” Mr. Zorn said, “we’ll continue to do it.”

On this night, John Lee arrives at the deck about 1:15 a.m. with a dozen travel mates, many of them from Korea. “We weren’t aware it was open that late,” he says.

They are part of an organization called the Christian Gospel Mission and are touring the United States. Mr. Lee, 38, from Los Angeles, is interpreting. The group poses for pictures, the East Side’s lights their backdrop, and then their leader, Joeun Jung, starts a prayer.

“She was so moved by all the beautiful light,” Mr. Lee said afterward. “Each light represented a person or a family or a group.”

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2006/07/11/nyregion/Empire.1.650Large.jpg
After they got married, Martin Nilsson and Mira Akerman visited the Empire State Building Observation deck after midnight.

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2006/07/11/nyregion/Empire.2.650Large.jpg
Members of The Christian Gospel Mission pray for New York City and sing hymns.

http://graphics10.nytimes.com/images/2006/07/11/nyregion/Empire.3.650Large.jpg
Countless lovebirds have left their marks on the Empire State Building, with new declarations replacing those that have faded.

http://graphics10.nytimes.com/images/2006/07/11/nyregion/Empire.4.650Large.jpg
The misty atmosphere has inspired Kevin Livingston to ask Charlotte Harrison if she will be his steady girlfriend. Her answer seems obvious.

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2006/07/11/nyregion/Empire.5.650Large.jpg
David Mehjoub, center, photographed the top of the building as David Mertens, right, looked on. Both were visiting from Brussels.

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2006/07/11/nyregion/Empire.7.650Large.jpg
Some people are on the phone, buying postcards or peering at the view, but a couple managed to find a private space for an embrace.

http://graphics10.nytimes.com/images/2006/07/11/nyregion/Empire.8.450Large.jpg
Some of the souvenirs in the observation deck gift shop.

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2006/07/11/nyregion/Empire.9.650Large.jpg
Inside the gift shop of the observation deck.

Copyright 2006 The New York Times Company

OmegaNYC
July 15th, 2006, 01:26 AM
The GREATEST skyscraper ever build. Period. The Empire State Building. :)

LeCom
July 17th, 2006, 12:29 AM
http://www.pbase.com/nyguy/image/62683597/large.jpg

Classic-ness just oozes out of shots like these.

pianoman11686
July 18th, 2006, 12:58 AM
http://images1.snapfish.com/34763%3C948%7Ffp345%3Enu%3D3247%3E4%3A5%3E9%3A%3B% 3EWSNRCG%3D323394%3B47%3A%3A%3B9nu0mrj

OmegaNYC
July 18th, 2006, 01:12 AM
Man, if I was a multi-billionaire, I would buy the ESB, and move it into my backyard. I'll call it. The "Garden State Building". Man you NYers would be pissed!!! :p It's like moving the Yankees to Boston. :D

beatricethecat
July 26th, 2006, 11:49 PM
i'm hoping, with this little bit of info i am giving, that someone out there knows what the heck i am talking about. years ago in college i read a book, which i thought was "Delerious New York" which had a few accounts of peoples reactions to having offices so high up in the air. there were accounts of rain falling sideways and other weird weather stuff. also, how strange it felt to be inhabiting a space that previously never existed architectually in such a way. recently i bought "Delerious New York" and althought i haven't re-read it cover to cover, i couldn't find anything like this in there.

perhaps i'll never find that exact book, but does anyone have any suggestions as to where to look for info about this sort of stuff?

thanks so much for any pointing fingers,

j

stache
July 27th, 2006, 12:28 AM
I don't know about books but I read print media plus saw tv stuff about the people that lived in the Hancock tower in Chicago. Very similar themes.

ablarc
July 27th, 2006, 12:47 AM
Delirious New York: a book by Rem Koolhaas, before he was a superstar.

ZippyTheChimp
September 5th, 2006, 10:54 AM
http://img113.imageshack.us/img113/138/esb31dh5.th.jpg (http://img113.imageshack.us/my.php?image=esb31dh5.jpg).

Fabrizio
September 5th, 2006, 12:05 PM
One great thing about the Empire (and other pre-WWII skyscrapers) is that you can work that high in the sky yet still open the windows.

ablarc
September 5th, 2006, 07:08 PM
^ ...though you do have to invest in paper weights.

NYguy
September 5th, 2006, 08:58 PM
Posted here before, but I never get sick of it...

http://www.pbase.com/nyguy/image/23908552/large.jpg

Vengineer
September 5th, 2006, 09:51 PM
It's still the best there is.

TREPYE
September 6th, 2006, 01:14 AM
Posted here before, but I never get sick of it...

http://www.pbase.com/nyguy/image/23908552/large.jpg

That is one awesome shot!! Its just soars up as if its gonna come out of the pictures's paper like a 3-D.

Alonzo-ny
September 6th, 2006, 01:31 AM
you can post it all day!!!!!!!!!!!

TonyO
September 12th, 2006, 09:42 AM
Per the Real Estate Weekly, CB Richard Ellis is taking over leasing. This will serve as a turning point in the vacancy at the ESB in my opinion. It's good news.

BigMac
September 14th, 2006, 03:46 PM
AM New York
September 14, 2006

Empire State Building won't host National Cartoon Museum

Plans for a National Cartoon Museum at the Empire State Building have fallen through, with owners of the landmark Manhattan skyscraper saying the project was taking too long to develop.

Led by "Beetle Bailey" creator Mort Walker, organizers of the museum had planned to open it next year on the first three floors of the building with 200,000 historic pieces, including the first drawings of Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse, original "Dick Tracy" comic strips, comic books, toys, film, CDs and DVDs.

Peter Malkin, a real estate magnate from Greenwich who is chairman of the group that owns the Empire State Building, said he supported the museum, but was forced to put the space back on the market because construction had not begun. He said the space for the museum had been saved, rent-free, for over a year.

"We had signed a lease, and under the lease they were supposed to go in and create the space for the museum and do work by a certain date," Malkin told The Advocate of Stamford. "They were not able to proceed with that, and we extended the date several times.

"But it was necessary finally to terminate the arrangement because they had not been able to proceed with their program," he said. "We're disappointed that it has not worked out as Mort had and we had hoped, but we just have to go forward with a more traditional, commercial use of the space."

Walker, whose studio is in Stamford, disputed Malkin's version of what happened.

"They changed the deal on us," Walker said last week. "They were going to sell our tickets when they sold tickets to the observation tower. We were going to split the ticket sales. They turned around and said they couldn't do it. They put our rent at $650,000. We found that too difficult, so our lease was canceled."

Walker added Wednesday, "It's a big disappointment. I really felt like we had a perfect situation."

Organizers of the museum had hoped to pull in 700,000 of the 3.5 million people who visit the Empire State Building's observatory every year. He said the original deal called for the museum to get the space rent-free in return for half the ticket sale proceeds, estimated at $7 million.

The museum's collection of cartoon art, which Walker says is one of the largest in the world, remains in a warehouse in Stamford.

It first opened in 1974 in Greenwich as the International Museum of Cartoon Art. It later moved to New York and Florida before it closed in 2002 due to financial troubles.

Walker said he is looking at other locations in New York City for the museum. He said he is discouraged, but is not giving up.

"We know we've got something good here. It's just a matter of working it out," he said.

Copyright 2006 AM New York

Dynamicdezzy
September 14th, 2006, 04:18 PM
I don't care how tall they build, the ESB will always be what set the standard for a super tall. I find it funny whenever any bridge, building or any other large project gets disected for the public, ESB is always used as a reference; "just as large as the Empire State Building," "Enough steel to build the Empire State Building," etc, etc.

Edward
September 17th, 2006, 11:14 PM
Empire State Building in white, with New York Times Tower under construction.

http://static.flickr.com/91/246058328_0392ddeffd_o.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/sudentas/246058328/)

OmegaNYC
September 17th, 2006, 11:27 PM
Beauty!

ManhattanKnight
October 26th, 2006, 07:14 PM
. . . a crisp fall afternoon . . .

http://img102.imageshack.us/img102/1546/cyn04751arb3.jpg

ablarc
October 26th, 2006, 07:27 PM
Ever upward...all that striving. Too bad about the flattops. At Least PanAm (MetLife) put its flat top to use landing helicopters. Until the inevitable accident.

lofter1
October 26th, 2006, 08:14 PM
If you buy the penthouse at the Onyx (http://www.wirednewyork.com/forum/showpost.php?p=126768&postcount=1123) that ^^^ will pretty much be your view ;)

pianoman11686
October 27th, 2006, 05:54 PM
http://static.flickr.com/107/271474679_22f42ac9dc.jpg

Louisville Joe's photostream (http://www.flickr.com/photos/louisville327/)

Dagrecco82
November 26th, 2006, 12:47 PM
Holiday Season in the City.

[/URL][URL="http://img432.imageshack.us/my.php?image=img2888ht2.jpg"]http://img432.imageshack.us/img432/9936/img2888ht2.th.jpg (http://www.wirednewyork.com/forum/%5BURL=http://img432.imageshack.us/my.php?image=img2888ht2.jpg%5D%5BIMG%5Dhttp://img432.imageshack.us/img432/9936/img2888ht2.th.jpg%5B/IMG%5D%5B/URL%5D)

Joelio
December 7th, 2006, 02:34 PM
My friend took this when she was in New York just about a month ago.

3170

Joelio
December 11th, 2006, 01:08 PM
Does anyone have a floorplan of the ESB lobby?

ManhattanKnight
January 18th, 2007, 07:54 AM
January 18, 2007

Foiled Daredevil Fares Better in Court

By ANEMONA HARTOCOLLIS

If you have parachute training and an urge to jump off the Empire State Building — or the Brooklyn Bridge — there may be nothing wrong with it, a New York City judge ruled yesterday.

The judge threw out an indictment against Jeb Corliss, a professional parachute jumper who tried to leap from the observation deck of the Empire State Building last April, before being stopped by building security officers and the police.

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2007/01/18/nyregion/450_jumper.jpg
Patrick Andrade for The New York Times
Jeb Corliss on his lawyer’s office ledge after his indictment was thrown out. No, he didn’t jump.

But Justice Michael R. Ambrecht of State Supreme Court in Manhattan said that as a professional BASE (Bridge, Antenna, Span, Earth) jumper, Mr. Corliss, who has parachuted from the Eiffel Tower, the Golden Gate Bridge and the Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, was experienced and careful enough to jump off a building without endangering his own life or anyone else’s.

“To hold that defendant’s conduct rises to this level of blameworthiness is manifestly unjust and contrary to prevailing law,” Justice Ambrecht wrote in his eight-page decision.

Legal experts expressed amazement at the decision yesterday.

“Well, as a New Yorker, I think I won’t walk near the Empire State Building for a while,” said Stephen Gillers, a law professor at New York University. “If you’re as skilled as Corliss and you get a judge like Ambrecht, you may have a license to do this.”

Mr. Corliss, 30, who lives in Malibu, Calif., was in court for the decision. His lawyer, Mark Jay Heller, hailed that decision as a huge victory for would-be jumpers everywhere. He was coy about whether his client would try to jump again, but said “I wouldn’t be at all surprised.”.

Paul Browne, a spokesman for the Police Department, said that if Mr. Corliss did try the stunt again, he would be arrested. “It’s a surprising decision, considering the grave risk posed to the public on the streets below, not to mention the police officers and Empire State security personnel who risked their own lives to stop him,” Mr. Browne said.

“Does the court really want the Empire State and other city landmarks to become magnets for BASE jumpers?” he asked.

What the decision shows, Mr. Heller says, is that while many things are manifestly illegal in New York — like murder, shoplifting and passing a bad check — jumping off a tall edifice may not be.

He predicted that the State Legislature would be forced to close this apparent legal loophole and pass a law against jumping off tall buildings and bridges.

“I mean, it’s shocking,” Mr. Heller said. “I would assume that somebody is now going to go to the Legislature and say, ‘Hey, we have a little hole in our book here; we’ve got to plug it up.’ ”

Mr. Corliss was charged with reckless endangerment with depraved indifference to life. Justice Ambrecht ruled that Mr. Corliss had not shown depraved indifference because he had studied traffic patterns on Fifth Avenue and 34th Street, and timed his jump to land when the light was red to avoid hitting vehicles on the avenue.

But Mr. Gillers disagreed and suggested that the district attorney, Robert M. Morgenthau appeal. “It doesn’t make sense to me that in a city like New York with its population density on a busy shopping street that somebody, no matter how skilled, can safely be allowed to jump from the 86th floor of the Empire State Building,” Mr. Gillers said.

As for the absence of a law prohibiting people from jumping off tall edifices, Mr. Gillers said Mr. Heller was taking things too literally.

“The law works in generalities,” he said. “There’s no separate statute for the Empire State Building, the Chrysler Building and the G.M. Building, or even buildings per se. The law talks about creating risk, and whether you do it by jumping off the Empire State Building or driving through a commercial zone during the business day at high speeds, they both fall within the same prohibition.”

Barbara Thompson, a spokeswoman for Mr. Morgenthau, said prosecutors stood by the charge and were studying the decision “to see what remedies we have.” She added, “We believe that jumping from the Empire State Building remains a reckless act.”

Copyright 2007 The New York Times Company

Bob
January 18th, 2007, 09:50 PM
If only somebody with some $$$ and imagination would write a blank check to an architect/developer and say, "I want you to build me a brand new Empire State Building, contemporary scale with large floor plates, and at least 150 stories tall, with an exterior identical in every possible way to the original. Exceed original fireproofing specs by taking whatever they're doing at the WTC and triple it."

Boy, I would either be dangerous, or a heckuva lot of fun if I had the big bucks.

antinimby
February 1st, 2007, 11:53 PM
Consolidating their Empire: Major tenant cuts at icon


http://www.therealdeal.net//issues/FEBRUARY_2007/images/1170193498.jpg
Anthony Malkin of Wien & Malkin,
managers of the Empire State Building,
said the upgrade will eliminate suites
with less than 2,500 square feet.


By Vanessa Londono
February 2007 (http://www.therealdeal.net/issues/FEBRUARY_2007/1170193498.php)

Plans to overhaul the Empire State Building are creating a backlash from small tenants who are worried they will be pushed out of the building.

Renovations have just begun, and Wien & Malkin, managers of the iconic building, are upgrading internal systems as well as reconfiguring office space to make room for larger tenants. Plans include consolidating small office suites and reducing the tenant count by at least 50 percent.

The Empire State Building, known for its ancient infrastructure and poor layouts, has reportedly had trouble competing with modern Class A buildings in Midtown. The building has a high vacancy rate that has reportedly hit 18 percent at times.

Recently, asking rates for the building, which has 862 suites, were almost 25 percent below the average asking rent in Midtown.

The plans to remove tenants come on top of years of battle between tenants and owners. Increases in energy bills, unsuitable work spaces and additional fees are part of a move by management to force them out, tenants said. Tenants said they are being unfairly edged out of the building in an effort by management to reposition the Empire State Building as high-end Class A space.

"We have 80 floors of tenants. For lack of a better expression, we're not running a hotel full of one- and three-year leases," responded Anthony Malkin, president of Wien & Malkin, which manages the Empire State Building. "We want higher-credit-quality tenants brought in by higher-quality brokers. We're committing meaningful dollars to the upgrade.

"Along the path there may be some people who are not able to meet those rents, and move on to other space," he said.

While the average tenant at the Empire State Building has less than 2,000 square feet, Wien & Malkin plan to get rid of suites below 2,500 square feet and offer more space in the 10,000- to 15,000-square-foot range. Also, management is working to bring their tenant count down to about 375, with an average of four tenants per floor.

According to Malkin, management does not plan to renew leases for certain tenants.

"It's a natural process," Malkin said. "When you're spending $600 million [on renovations], you look to get an economic return. Businesses that value the building are actually quite excited," he added.

According to Malkin, the Empire State Building is always going to have a significant amount of small space (in the 2,500- to 7,500-square-foot range). "But it's not going to have an incredibly high amount of small spaces," he said.

Because of concerns with leases, electricity costs and building security, tenants began forming a tenant association in May 2006 in collaboration with the Service Employees International Union, an association that is organizing security workers in New York City. The Empire State Building currently employs both SEIU unionized security workers and outside contracted security workers.

Robert Feldman, an attorney working with the law offices of Laura M. Miranda, which represents some tenants in the Empire State Building, says substandard conditions in one of his client's office suites rendered the premises "unsuitable" due to extensive construction. The case is currently in litigation.

The tenant association has been distributing leaflets throughout the building that encourage tenants to sue, tenants said.

Joe Sabrin, a tenant with about 1,000 square feet on the 45th floor, said his office space has water damage and cracks running through the walls. Sabrin, who is involved in the tenant association, said his biggest frustration has been a spike in electricity charges: He now pays more than double the bill he paid two years ago. According to Sabrin, management has come in to do assessments on electricity, but he has yet to see a report.

"I've been trying to get a response but I have a better chance of the wall answering," Sabrin said. "They are not pro-tenant."

After receiving what he says are inadequate responses from management, Feldman has advised some tenants to put their rent into escrow and litigate the matter. But the tenant association may lose that gambit when members who are significantly behind on rent are eliminated during the overhaul, says Malkin.

"Tenants have their rights under their leases," Malkin said. "No effort has been made to not answer any tenants' questions. There is no reason for us to do anything but deal with tenants as per their leases."

Malkin says management for the Empire State Building will deal with any tenant current with his or her rent.

"Historically, the Empire State has had a high rate of turnover with lower-credit-quality tenants that don't survive long," Malkin said. Weeding out low credit tenants and those in arrears is, he noted, just part of the renovations.

Copyright © 2003-2007 The Real Deal.

stache
February 2nd, 2007, 03:33 AM
They have a long history of tenant compaints.

kliq6
February 2nd, 2007, 10:01 AM
Finally a owner that will try and make this building viable

TonyO
February 2nd, 2007, 10:33 AM
This is a good thing. The building needs to be gutted and someone finally puts up the money to do it.

antinimby
February 2nd, 2007, 11:53 PM
I see it as a double-edged sword.

Yes, the interior renovations and upgrades are much needed but I hate to see all those small business tenants get kicked out.

Where will those people go?

There aren't many available and somewhat affordable commercial spaces left in this city.

finnman69
February 3rd, 2007, 03:41 PM
It needs an internal update. There is no reason the ESB should not be a class A building with 21st century MEP systems. The location is improving. Yes some small biz tenants will get the boot, but the unaffordability of NYC is a greater issue that the ESB alone wont solve. Only lower business taxes and increased construction of commercial space to alleviate space shortages will solve that.

The ESB should be as desirable and upscale as Rockefeller Center.

antinimby
February 7th, 2007, 11:36 PM
Nation's 150 favorite structures

http://www.cityrealty.com/graphics/uploads/1170878513_plaza1a.gif

07-FEB-07

A poll released today by the American Institute of Architects and Harris Interactive indicated that the Empire State Building is the nation's "favorite" building.

The AIA is celebrating its 150th anniversary this year and it and Harris Interactive polled 2,448 of its members last October to create a list of 248 "favorite" American buildings. These 248 structures represented all works receiving six or more individual mentions from AIA members. For the general public survey, 1,804 U.S. adults, age 18 and older, were interviewed online between December 27, 2006, and January 3, 2007. Respondents evaluated up to 78 structures, selected in random order from the larger list of 248.

Respondents were shown a photograph of each structure they evaluated.
Like the member survey, the public survey included the option to write in other works that were not among the subset evaluated.

"This poll of America's Favorite Architecture confirms that architecture resonates with people," said RK Stewart, FAIA, 2007 AIA president. "The choice of the Empire State Building shows that when you ask people to select their favorites, they chose buildings and designs that symbolized innovation and the spirit of their community - but also, more importantly - they chose structures that hold a place in their hearts and minds."

Washington's public buildings and memorials dominated the top 10 list, but New York City easily led the list with 32 structures in the top 150.

Following are the top 10 structures and their architects and designers:

Empire State Building (1, Shreve, Lamb & Harmon);

The White House (2, James Hoban);

Washington National Cathedral (3, George Bodley and Henry Vaughan);

Jefferson Memorial (4, John Russell Pope);

Golden Gate Bridge (5, Irving F. Morrow and Gertrude C. Morrow);

U.S. Capitol (6, William Thornton, Benjamin Henry Latrobe, Charles Bulfinch, Thomas U. Walter, Montgomery C. Meigs);

Lincoln Memorial (7, Henry Bacon);

Biltmore Estate/Vanderbilt Mansion (8, Richard Morris Hunt);

Chrysler Building (9, William Van Alen);

Vietnam Veterans Memorial (10, Maya Lin with Cooper-Lecky Partnership).

The following is a list of other New York City structures that made the list with their rank and architect in parenthesis:

St. Patrick's Cathedral (11, James Renwick);
Grand Central Station (13, Reed and Stem; Warren & Wetmore);
St. Regis Hotel (16, Trowbridge & Livingston);
Metropolitan Museum of Art (17, Calvert Vaux, McKim, Mead & White, Richard Morris Hunt, Kevin Roche, John Dinkeloo);
World Trade Center (19, Minoru Yamasaki, Antonio Brittiochi, Emery Roth & Sons);
Brooklyn Bridge (20, John Augustus Roebling);
Cathedral of St. John the Divine (23, Heins & LaFarge; Ralph Adams Cram);
Rose Center for Earth and Space (33, James Stewart Polshek);
Woolworth Building (44, Cass Gilbert);
Waldorf-Astoria Hotel (46, Schultze & Weaver);
New York Public Library (47, Carr¿re & Hastings);
Carnegie Hall (48, William B. Tuthill, Richard Morris Hunt and Dankmar Adler);
Apple Store Fifth Avenue (53, Bohlin Cywinski Jackson);
Rockefeller Center (56, Raymond Hood et al);
New York Times Building (68, Renzo Piano);
Flatiron Building (72, Daniel Burnham);
Guggenheim Museum (74, Frank Lloyd Wright);
The Plaza Hotel (81, Henry Janeway Hardenbergh)(shown [above]);
Yankee Stadium (84, Osborn Architects & Engineers);
Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts (86, Wallace K. Harrison);
Dakota Apartments (87, Henry Janeway Hardenbergh);
Radio City Music Hall (100, Edward Durell Stone);
Time Warner Center (105, David Childs);
United Nations Headquarters (111, Wallace K. Harrison, Oscar Niemeyer, Le Corbusier);
TWA Terminal, Kennedy Airport (115, Eero Saarinen);
Royalton Hotel (133, Philippe Starck);
Apple SoHo (141, Bohlin Cywinski Jackson);
Museum of Modern Art (146, Philip Goodwin and Edward Durell Stone).

Seventeen of the projects ranked in America's Favorite Architecture are located in Washington, D.C., and Chicago was represented with 16.

Copyright © 1994-2007 CITY REALTY.COM INC.

lofter1
February 8th, 2007, 01:57 AM
The fact that two Apple stores made the NYC list is telling ... no doubt the fact that Harris Interactive was one of the pollers skewed that a bit.

ablarc
February 8th, 2007, 08:07 AM
It needs an internal update. There is no reason the ESB should not be a class A building with 21st century MEP systems. The location is improving. Yes some small biz tenants will get the boot, but the unaffordability of NYC is a greater issue that the ESB alone wont solve.
Where will Sam Spade move his office?

NYguy
February 8th, 2007, 09:03 AM
It's always been my favorite, so I owe it a little tribute...here's to Number 1!

http://www.pbase.com/nyguy/image/23908552/medium.jpg


http://www.pbase.com/nyguy/image/23908552/original.jpg


http://www.pbase.com/nyguy/image/24732438/large.jpg


http://www.pbase.com/nyguy/image/62683573/large.jpg


http://www.pbase.com/nyguy/image/62683594/large.jpg


http://www.pbase.com/nyguy/image/62683639/large.jpg


http://www.pbase.com/nyguy/image/26176560/large.jpg


http://www.pbase.com/nyguy/image/26176564/large.jpg

OmegaNYC
February 8th, 2007, 01:22 PM
Nothing. I mean NOTHING. Says "New York City" like the Empire State Building. Congrats!

ati_m
February 9th, 2007, 12:32 PM
Truly a great building!

Does anybody know if you are allowed to bring a tripod to the observation deck?

Derek2k3
February 9th, 2007, 07:15 PM
Nation's 150 favorite structures



The following is a list of other New York City structures that made the list with their rank and architect in parenthesis:

St. Patrick's Cathedral (11, James Renwick);
Grand Central Station (13, Reed and Stem; Warren & Wetmore);
St. Regis Hotel (16, Trowbridge & Livingston);
Metropolitan Museum of Art (17, Calvert Vaux, McKim, Mead & White, Richard Morris Hunt, Kevin Roche, John Dinkeloo);
World Trade Center (19, Minoru Yamasaki, Antonio Brittiochi, Emery Roth & Sons);
Brooklyn Bridge (20, John Augustus Roebling);
Cathedral of St. John the Divine (23, Heins & LaFarge; Ralph Adams Cram);
Rose Center for Earth and Space (33, James Stewart Polshek);
Woolworth Building (44, Cass Gilbert);
Waldorf-Astoria Hotel (46, Schultze & Weaver);
New York Public Library (47, CarrΏre & Hastings);
Carnegie Hall (48, William B. Tuthill, Richard Morris Hunt and Dankmar Adler);
Apple Store Fifth Avenue (53, Bohlin Cywinski Jackson);
Rockefeller Center (56, Raymond Hood et al);
New York Times Building (68, Renzo Piano);p
Flatiron Building (72, Daniel Burnham);
Guggenheim Museum (74, Frank Lloyd Wright);
The Plaza Hotel (81, Henry Janeway Hardenbergh)(shown [above]);
Yankee Stadium (84, Osborn Architects & Engineers);
Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts (86, Wallace K. Harrison);
Dakota Apartments (87, Henry Janeway Hardenbergh);
Radio City Music Hall (100, Edward Durell Stone);
Time Warner Center (105, David Childs);
United Nations Headquarters (111, Wallace K. Harrison, Oscar Niemeyer, Le Corbusier);
TWA Terminal, Kennedy Airport (115, Eero Saarinen);
Royalton Hotel (133, Philippe Starck);
Apple SoHo (141, Bohlin Cywinski Jackson);
Museum of Modern Art (146, Philip Goodwin and Edward Durell Stone).

Copyright © 1994-2007 CITY REALTY.COM INC.

Nice to see some of our new buildings on the list. Surprised Hearst is not up there though.

lofter1
February 10th, 2007, 12:34 AM
I don't get this one:

Apple SoHo (141, Bohlin Cywinski Jackson)
It was my Post Office for years and it's a cool space and everything ...

But FAVORITE NYC Building???

BrooklynRider
February 10th, 2007, 01:15 AM
Oh dear Lofter, you're not hip anymore.

lofter1
February 10th, 2007, 02:29 AM
Yeah? And who is these days?

NoyokA
February 12th, 2007, 11:00 PM
Nation's 150 favorite structures

http://www.cityrealty.com/graphics/uploads/1170878513_plaza1a.gif

07-FEB-07

A poll released today by the American Institute of Architects and Harris Interactive indicated that the Empire State Building is the nation's "favorite" building.

The AIA is celebrating its 150th anniversary this year and it and Harris Interactive polled 2,448 of its members last October to create a list of 248 "favorite" American buildings. These 248 structures represented all works receiving six or more individual mentions from AIA members. For the general public survey, 1,804 U.S. adults, age 18 and older, were interviewed online between December 27, 2006, and January 3, 2007. Respondents evaluated up to 78 structures, selected in random order from the larger list of 248.

Respondents were shown a photograph of each structure they evaluated.
Like the member survey, the public survey included the option to write in other works that were not among the subset evaluated.

"This poll of America's Favorite Architecture confirms that architecture resonates with people," said RK Stewart, FAIA, 2007 AIA president. "The choice of the Empire State Building shows that when you ask people to select their favorites, they chose buildings and designs that symbolized innovation and the spirit of their community - but also, more importantly - they chose structures that hold a place in their hearts and minds."

Washington's public buildings and memorials dominated the top 10 list, but New York City easily led the list with 32 structures in the top 150.

Following are the top 10 structures and their architects and designers:

Empire State Building (1, Shreve, Lamb & Harmon);

The White House (2, James Hoban);

Washington National Cathedral (3, George Bodley and Henry Vaughan);

Jefferson Memorial (4, John Russell Pope);

Golden Gate Bridge (5, Irving F. Morrow and Gertrude C. Morrow);

U.S. Capitol (6, William Thornton, Benjamin Henry Latrobe, Charles Bulfinch, Thomas U. Walter, Montgomery C. Meigs);

Lincoln Memorial (7, Henry Bacon);

Biltmore Estate/Vanderbilt Mansion (8, Richard Morris Hunt);

Chrysler Building (9, William Van Alen);

Vietnam Veterans Memorial (10, Maya Lin with Cooper-Lecky Partnership).

The following is a list of other New York City structures that made the list with their rank and architect in parenthesis:

St. Patrick's Cathedral (11, James Renwick);
Grand Central Station (13, Reed and Stem; Warren & Wetmore);
St. Regis Hotel (16, Trowbridge & Livingston);
Metropolitan Museum of Art (17, Calvert Vaux, McKim, Mead & White, Richard Morris Hunt, Kevin Roche, John Dinkeloo);
World Trade Center (19, Minoru Yamasaki, Antonio Brittiochi, Emery Roth & Sons);
Brooklyn Bridge (20, John Augustus Roebling);
Cathedral of St. John the Divine (23, Heins & LaFarge; Ralph Adams Cram);
Rose Center for Earth and Space (33, James Stewart Polshek);
Woolworth Building (44, Cass Gilbert);
Waldorf-Astoria Hotel (46, Schultze & Weaver);
New York Public Library (47, CarrΏre & Hastings);
Carnegie Hall (48, William B. Tuthill, Richard Morris Hunt and Dankmar Adler);
Apple Store Fifth Avenue (53, Bohlin Cywinski Jackson);
Rockefeller Center (56, Raymond Hood et al);
New York Times Building (68, Renzo Piano);
Flatiron Building (72, Daniel Burnham);
Guggenheim Museum (74, Frank Lloyd Wright);
The Plaza Hotel (81, Henry Janeway Hardenbergh)(shown [above]);
Yankee Stadium (84, Osborn Architects & Engineers);
Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts (86, Wallace K. Harrison);
Dakota Apartments (87, Henry Janeway Hardenbergh);
Radio City Music Hall (100, Edward Durell Stone);
Time Warner Center (105, David Childs);
United Nations Headquarters (111, Wallace K. Harrison, Oscar Niemeyer, Le Corbusier);
TWA Terminal, Kennedy Airport (115, Eero Saarinen);
Royalton Hotel (133, Philippe Starck);
Apple SoHo (141, Bohlin Cywinski Jackson);
Museum of Modern Art (146, Philip Goodwin and Edward Durell Stone).

Seventeen of the projects ranked in America's Favorite Architecture are located in Washington, D.C., and Chicago was represented with 16.

Copyright © 1994-2007 CITY REALTY.COM INC.


This list is a joke. The following are nowhere among the top of architecture in America, let alone near the top of New York City architecture. But then again I'm sure of the people questioned very few if any knew the actual names of the Barclay Vesey Building, 70 Pine Street, American Radiator Building, Seagrams Building, and the LVMH Tower, just to name a few. This is most evident by the inclusion of Yankee Stadium and Apple Store Soho making the list, people like the Yanks and IPODS, so they were included in this popularity contest, ahead of many more much more deserving buildings. Other ridiculous inclusions include:

St. Regis Hotel
Carnegie Hall
Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts
Dakota Apartments
Radio City Music Hall
Royalton Hotel
Museum of Modern Art

Questionable real architectural importance (rated far too high, in either case):

St. Patrick's Cathedral
Waldorf-Astoria Hotel
New York Public Library
Apple Store Fifth Avenue
New York Times Building
The Plaza Hotel
Time Warner Center

lofter1
February 12th, 2007, 11:15 PM
In your opinion ^^^ :cool:

ablarc
February 12th, 2007, 11:24 PM
IMO these are legit:

Carnegie Hall
Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts
Dakota Apartments
Radio City Music Hall
Museum of Modern Art

St. Patrick's Cathedral
Waldorf-Astoria Hotel
New York Public Library
The Plaza Hotel
Time Warner Center

Citytect
February 12th, 2007, 11:50 PM
The list is titled "Nation's 150 Favorite Structures" not "Nation's 150 Best Structures".

lofter1
February 12th, 2007, 11:52 PM
I second your list, ablarc.

And raise you a New York Times Tower.

ablarc
February 12th, 2007, 11:52 PM
The list is titled "Nation's 150 Favorite Structures" not "Nation's 150 Best Structures".
Yeah.

lofter1
February 12th, 2007, 11:57 PM
In that case ^^^ I add my home ;)

NYguy
February 20th, 2007, 08:45 AM
NY Post

DIMMING 'EMPIRE' TO SAVE SIGHT

By NEIL GRAVES
February 20, 2007

The world-famous tower lights of the Empire State Building will be turned off for 28 minutes on March 1 to remember the 28 million people around the world that an advocacy group considers to be "unnecessarily blind."

"Most people hear '20/20' and think of perfect vision," said Oliver Foot, president and executive director of ORBIS International, a nonprofit dedicated to saving sight worldwide.

"When the Empire State Building turns off its lights at 20:20 [military time for 8:20 p.m.], this will draw attention to the plight of 28 million people who are blind and could be cured - right now - if they had access to the proper eye care," Foot said.

Throughout the month, ORBIS hopes to spread the message that 75 percent of those who are suffering sight loss can be cured.

Before the lights go out, the tower will shine blue and white to commemorate the organization's 25th anniversary.

The fun part of ORBIS' monthlong effort will be an evening of "Dark Dining," a feast for the nose and the mouth - in which diners will be blindfolded.

The Camaje Bistro, at 85 MacDougal St. in Greenwich Village, will offer a five-course meal for $150 - $60 of it tax deductible. The blindfold will be put in place as the guest enters.

Advance reservations are required for the March 1 dinner and can be made by calling (212) 673-8184.

Dagrecco82
April 9th, 2007, 08:22 PM
http://img406.imageshack.us/img406/9623/img3294ia9.jpg

ManhattanKnight
April 9th, 2007, 10:19 PM
My first thought upon seeing this image was just how cluttered with antennas and dishes the ESB mast and supporting structures have become, post-9/11. And then I looked a little more closely and am pretty sure that I'm seeing something much worse -- missing pieces of the (stainless steel?) mast cladding and what looks like a pretty big hole. I cropped the photo, adjusted its brightness/contrast and came up with this:

http://img133.imageshack.us/img133/549/esbcloseupuu9.jpg

I really must get back up there for a personal inspection!

TimmyG
April 9th, 2007, 11:29 PM
That looks like something out of the Soviet Union.

Dagrecco82
April 10th, 2007, 01:07 AM
My first thought upon seeing this image was just how cluttered with antennas and dishes the ESB mast and supporting structures have become, post-9/11. And then I looked a little more closely and am pretty sure that I'm seeing something much worse -- missing pieces of the (stainless steel?) mast cladding and what looks like a pretty big hole. I cropped the photo, adjusted its brightness/contrast and came up with this:

http://img133.imageshack.us/img133/549/esbcloseupuu9.jpg

I really must get back up there for a personal inspection!

It's pretty sad to see the condition in which the mast has fallen. Unforunately, there are missing pieces all around, not just in that section. It's so cluttered that it almost doesn't even look like it originally did. I wish we could go back to this:


http://www.lnl.com/images/empire/esb1.jpg

http://www.lnl.com/images/empire/esb1.jpg

stache
April 11th, 2007, 12:45 AM
Being selfish and speaking for myself, I like the extra tower on top. I was not a happy camper when they added the post 911 cell transmitters, but I realize their importance.

antinimby
April 13th, 2007, 10:53 PM
Man jumps to death from Empire State Building office


APR 13, 2007 (http://ny.metro.us/metro/local/ap/NY_Empire_State_Jumper.html) 8:30 PM EDT

NEW YORK (AP) -- A man jumped out the window of a law office on the 69th floor of the Empire State Building on Friday and fell to his death, police said.

Police responded to the midtown Manhattan landmark at about 2:50 p.m. after a 911 caller reported seeing a severed leg on 33rd Street. After closing the street between 5th and 6th Avenues, they discovered that the body had landed on a setback on the 30th floor.

Police identified the man as Moshe Kanovsky, a lawyer in his 30s.

In February 2006, a 21-year-old New York man jumped to his death after buying a ticket to its observation deck. Dovid Abramowitz jumped from a vacant office on the 66th floor of the 102-story building.

More than 30 people have committed suicide at the Empire State Building since it opened in 1931. The skyscraper reaches 1,454 feet to the top of its lightning rod.

Copyright 2007 The Associated Press