Tag: Gateway Center

  • Two Gateway Center

  • A Corner of Gateway Center

    A corner of Three Gateway Center

    One corner of Three Gateway Center, half sun and half shadow.

  • Three Gateway Center from Forbes Avenue

  • Three and Two Gateway Center

  • Three and Two Gateway Center

  • Gateway Center

    Gateway Center

    The Point was mostly a run-down warehouse district after the Second World War, which made it an ideal showcase for the modernist ideal of urban redevelopment. The part nearest the confluence of the rivers was set aside for a park (which took a quarter-century to realize), and the rest was demolished to make way for gleaming modern towers. It was a great success, and it probably did untold damage here and in other cities. Its success convinced a generation of urban planners that the key to prosperous development was to replace crowded urban districts with sterile modern towers. It almost never worked; Gateway Center was a lucky anomaly, and old Pa Pitt would suggest that the park and landscaping had more to do with its success than the architecture of the buildings—although he does think the three original Gateway Center towers (the silver cruciform towers in the middle right of this picture) are masterpieces of their kind. That, too, was a lucky accident: they were meant to be sheathed in brick, which would have made them pedestrian stacks of offices, but postwar shortages made it more economical to give them the gleaming metal surfaces you see here.

  • Wyndham Grand Pittsburgh Downtown

    Wyndham Grand Pittsburgh Downtown

    This hotel was built in 1959 as the Pittsburgh Hilton & Towers. It was probably meant by its architect to have the elegance of simplicity, and no one will argue about the simplicity. In the 2000s it was decided to add an egregiously mismatched postmodern front to the building; the Hilton, though, seemed to be constantly running out of money, and the addition sat half-finished for years. It was finally completed under the new owners.

  • Three Gateway Center

    Three Gateway Center

    Seen in 1999 from Equitable Plaza, which was in much better shape in those days.

  • Gateway Towers

    Gateway Towers

    It seems to old Pa Pitt that the word to describe this kind of building is “adequate.” Some modernist buildings certainly deserve to be called elegant; we need look no further than One Gateway Center in the background for an example of an elegant, even inspiring, modernist design. Gateway Towers, on the other hand, is rectangular, and once one has said that one has nearly exhausted the subject. It opened in 1964, and it must be a delightful place to live, with Point Park for its back yard and views in all directions. But it is hard to imagine anyone being inspired or delighted by this apartment tower. It was designed by Emery Roth, most of whose works are in New York; this is the only one Father Pitt knows of in Pittsburgh.

  • Three Gateway Center from the Diamond

    Three Gateway Center looms in the mist of a winter morning.