Of all the iconic buildings located in Manhattan, the Woolworth Building is the oldest – and by far one of the most famous – New York City skyscrapers. Close to 100 years after its construction, the Woolworth Building continues to attract attention in its trendy lower Manhattan neighborhood. The Woolworth Building continues to outshine many of its modern counterparts with its stylish strength and eye-catching architecture. Labeled the “Cathedral of Commerce” during its unveiling ceremony, the Woolworth Building showcases a distinct neo-Gothic style of architecture, including a steeple like central spire. Named the world’s tallest building in 1913, the Woolworth Building is still recognized as one of the nation’s fifty tallest skyscrapers thanks to a 792 foot tower. Car rental NYC customer can get a closer look at this American architectural icon by simply driving down Broadway.
Reach for the Sky
The Woolworth Building is easily one of the world’s most recognizable buildings. Designed by famed architect Call Gilbert, the Woolworth Building was originally slated to measure just 625 feet. The anti was later upped in order to break the tallest building record. Opened on April 24, 1913 the Woolworth Building quickly attracted the attention of local, national and international visitors. An observatory was quickly opened on the buildings 58th floor in order to provide visitors with an exclusive view of the city’s rising skyline. While visiting the building during your upcoming car rental NYC vacation try to imagine what it would have looked like to an early 10th century audience. It truly must have been an inspiring sight! Designed with the splendor and resilience of a European Gothic cathedral, the Woolworth Building is expected to remain an astonishing work of architectural genius well into the 21st century.
Details and Dollar Signs – Interesting Facts about the Woolworth Building
- Frank Woolworth commissioned Cass Gilbert to build the Woolworth Building as his company’s new official headquarters. Construction on the building cost over $13.5 million. Woolworth paid the entire sum in cash!
- The Woolworth Building was owned and operated by the Woolworth Company until 1998. Venator Group (formerly the F.W. Woolworth Company) sold the building to Witkoff Group for a cool $155 million.
- The Woolworth Building leased space inside the building for nearly 100 separate tenants. Famous residents included the Irving Trust Bank. Columbia Records also unveiled their new NYC recording studio inside the building.
- The Gothic detailing located at the top of the Woolworth Building is massively scaled in order to be visible from the ground.
- Frank Woolworth’s private lobby has been preserved inside the building. It’s ornate designed included a rich French Empire feel and plenty of marble!
Combining Engineering and Architectural Genius
The Woolworth Building is truly a marvel of aesthetics and functionality. State-of-the-art installments on the building included a new elevator safety system, high-speed elevators and bedrock based caissons. Intended as a testament to both the Woolworth Company and American innovation, the building quickly became an international sensation. The unveiling of the building even attracted the attention of then President, Woodrow Wilson. President Wilson pressed a button inside the White House on April 24th, 1913, illuminating both the interior and the exterior of the building instantly. Car rental NYC customers will also note an amazing collection of artistic and architectural features inside the building. These include numerous gargoyles, a handful of murals and beautiful moldings. Humorous portraits of the buildings engineer, Gunvald Aus, rental agent Edward J, Hogan, and the president of Irving Bank, Lewis Pierson, can also be found inside the building’s main lobby.
The best way to learn more about the Woolworth Building is to drop by. The building’s main entrance can be found on Broadway between Park Avenue and Barclay Street. Car rental NYC customers are allowed to explore the buildings main lobby. Private tour companies also offer tours of the building offering car rental NYC travelers a behind the scenes look at one of the nation’s most influential high-rises.