It is 1930. The country is in deep depression. The unemployment rate hit 15%.
The perception would be reducing investment, innovation and moving with short term interests, but instead, there was an architectural boom in Manhattan.
Empire State building is not only a monumental skyscraper which makes even New Yorkers take pictures of it every once in a while, Empire State isn’t only the most well known and the best architecture award winner, it is a symbol of what is achievable against all the odds.
It all started in 1930 when Raskob and his partners purchased the 34th St parcel of property for $16 million. The idea was to be the tallest building surpassing the Chrysler building which was completed in April 1930.
Raskob hired architect William F. Lamb, who finished the original drawings for the Empire State Building in two weeks. In one of their first meetings Raskob had taken a jumbo pencil, stood it on its end and asked Lamb, “Bill, how high can you make it so that it won’t fall down?”
Construction started in March 17, 1930.
Designed by William F. Lamb, Arthur Loomis Harmon, Yasuo Matsui and Gregory Johnson, Empire State was voted as “America’s Favorite Architecture” in a poll conducted by the American Institute of Architects.
About the architects..
Using over 3,400 workers a day, the building went up in just 14 months, 410 days to be exact, framework rising more than 4.5 stories a week, more than 2 weeks ahead of schedule and under budget at $40 million, which would be nearly $600 million today. May 1st, 1931, Empire State was completed so quick even for today’s standards.
On May 1st, President Hoover pressed a button in Washington, D.C. officially opening and turning on the Empire State Building’s lights.
The building is 102 stories high with 1860 steps and 443 meters or 1453 ft with its antenna. Empire State is so important, it has its own zipcode: 10018
For more than 40 years, Empire State was the tallest building in the world.
The building was in more than 250 TV shows including King Kong and Sleepless in Seattle.
King and Kong scene..
Sleepless in Seatle scene..
Every year 3.5 million people visit Empire State and leave $111 million a year which is 40% and highest share of its revenue.
It is a great gift to New Yorkers and to the world reminding the importance of forward thinking, visionary steps when the general perception would be reducing investment and ideas to surpass the crisis.
Empire State is the best form for representing the American dream.
It is such a monumental idea that it deserves its own day and film of how it all became a reality.
Why not make May 1st, Empire State Day, which also coincides with the internationals workers day? What do you think? Immigrants from the world including the native Americans worked for one goal and felt the satisfaction and happiness of union.
What would you think of a film that creates the true story of how Empire State was built? Who would you think be the best first act for John Jacob Raskob, the man who built Empire State, William F. Lamb and the other architects who designed the majestic building? So important and attractive, would be another great gift for New Yorkers and who love great inspiring stories.