Tag: Skyscrapers

  • Chevron Science Center, Oakland

    For people who like this kind of building, it is just the kind of building such people like, as Artemus Ward might say. It was finished in 1974; the design was by Kuhn, Newcomer & Valentour, a firm whose successors, “DRAW Collective,” still specialize in educational buildings. This building replaced the embarrassingly classical State Hall, the first building Pitt put up when it moved to Oakland, thus sparing us the sight of all those columns and pediments.

  • Outline of the Trimont

    The Trimont apartments on Mount Washington, outlined against winter clouds.

  • Three and Two Gateway Center

  • Wood Street Building (300 Sixth Avenue Building)

    Wood Street Building

    A Daniel Burnham design built for the McCreery & Company department store, this building opened in 1904. It originally had a classical base with a pair of arched entrances on Wood Street, but beginning in 1939 it had various alterations, so that nothing remains of the original Burnham design below the fourth floor. This was one of Burnham’s more minimalistic designs; in it we see how thin the wall can be between classicism and modernism.

    Below, an abstract composition with elements of this building reflected in Two PNC Plaza across the street.

    Reflections
  • Top of the Benedum-Trees Building

    Top of the Benedum-Trees Building

    The ornate cap of the Benedum-Trees Building, with the PPG Place Christmas tree poking its head into the picture. Enlarge the images to appreciate the wealth of carved detail.

    Benedum-Trees Building
  • United Steelworkers Building (IBM Building)

    United Steelworkers Building

    The diamond grid is not an ornamental facing: it holds up the building, along with a central core. “Diagrid construction” is a little more common today, but still fairly unusual; perhaps the most famous or notorious example of it is the Gherkin in London. This was a very early example. It was finished in 1964, and although it was originally built for IBM, it fits its current owner very well: its steel grid is a good demonstration of what steelworkers are capable of. The architects were the New Orleans firm of Curtis and Davis.

    Formerly the IBM Building
  • One Oliver Plaza

    This is not Father Pitt’s favorite building downtown, but it was one of the last works of a distinguished modern architect: William Lescaze, who died in 1969, the year after One Oliver Plaza was built. The building has had several names since then; it now goes by the name K&L Gates Center. Old Pa Pitt’s friend Dr. Boli has remarked that the names at the tops of the skyscrapers are a good index of who is most ruthlessly exploiting the masses at the moment. K&L Gates is a gigantic law firm.

  • Art Deco Christmas in the Koppers Building

    Christmas tree in the Koppers Building lobby

    The lobby of the Koppers Building is one of our richest Art Deco interiors, and here it is decorated for Christmas.

    Clock
    Lobby
    Window
    Balconies
  • Oakland from Across the River

    Litchfield Towers and Cathedral of Learning

    Views of central Oakland from the South Sides Slopes across the Monongahela. Above, the Cathedral of Learning and Litchfield Towers A, B, and C, or—as they have been known since they sprouted on the Oakland skyline—Ajax, Bab-O, and Comet.

    Litchfield Towers

    A closer view of the Litchfield Towers.

    Cathedral of Learning

    The Cathedral of Learning and its neighborhood.

    Central Oakland
  • Elevator Door in the Koppers Building