Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
May 1, 2006
HISTORY: 75 Years, 102 Stories

The Empire State Building today celebrates its 75th anniversary, having opened for business May 1, 1931. Super-skyscrapers and other monumental structures are traditionally built as symbols of prosperity and boom times - where else but America, where else but New York, would such a building be erected in the middle of a global depression?

Oh, and: they broke ground on the building January 22, 1930, finishing in less than a year and a half. And Ground Zero lies fallow.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 12:58 PM | History | Comments (5) | TrackBack (0)

As an architect, I have a separate distinction for skyscrapers. To me, The Empire State, Chrysler and Woolworth Buildings are tall buildings. So is Citicorp.

The WTC was always just a building that was tall.

Crank, I wouldn't go on about how Ground Zero lies fallow. When you think about it, the place and date are sacred to so many people that daring to actually build on it is a tough one. That construction has started in just 5 short years is probably something the rest of the world cannot imagine. The Palestinians live in "refugee camps" that date to 1948 (when do you stop being a refugee, and become something else-and BTW, they were never considered Palestinians when the Ottomans or British were there), and are still there. We have the WTC site cleared in a year, have a couple of years of legal arguments (only in America I guess), then roll up the sleeves and get to work. Also only in America I bet.

Posted by: Daryl Rosenblatt at May 1, 2006 2:13 PM


Perhaps. But "the families," Silverman, Pataki and a few others notwithstanding, I think you'll agree that we New Yorkers want to get something up there.

I can't speak for anyone else, but I'm sick of living in a city (and a nation) that worships a hole in the ground. Especially when that hole is little more than an uncoverd grave for 3,000 people and one of my city's most notable landmarks.

Let's Build Already!

Posted by: Mike at May 1, 2006 4:22 PM

Crank & Mike, I've got your back on this one. Build it bigger, better and more spectacular than before. The only thing fanatics understand is in your face. They respect that, whatever the religion or cause. If the final product is diminished from the original in any way, it will be considered a sign of weakness.

Posted by: maddirishman at May 2, 2006 11:52 AM

I don't really care if the new building is big or whatever. In fact, who's gonna work in the new 110 story building on that spot? Might as well go to the office with a "Mohammed's Image" bulls-eye on your back.

I just want something -- anything -- instead of that freakin hole.

Posted by: Mike at May 2, 2006 12:04 PM

With regard to where else, I'd not overlook the coliseum, in Rome, similarly recovering from the ills of Nero.

Posted by: Guest at May 3, 2006 12:10 PM
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