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3rd Ave El

Empire State Building, 34th Street and 5th Ave.

The base of the Empire State Building's TV tower was originally going to be a mast used for dirigibles, but the idea was scratched due to severe wind conditions at that height.

New York Old Photo of Empire State Building Unmatched in height for over forty years, the Empire State Building greets visitors to the city that never sleeps. It was Walter B. Chrysler who's imagination brought us the Chrysler Building and it was John Raskob, creator of General Motors who envisioned an even taller structure. Raskob assembled a group of well known aristocrats, headed by Alfred E. Smith, New York's governor. Their task was to develop a plan to construct a skyscraper that was taller than all others.

Financed by this group and designed by Shreve, Lamb & Harmon Associates, construction of the Empire State Building began on March 17, 1930. The building soared at a rate of 4 stories per week. Built on the former site of the original Waldorf Astoria Hotel , the 60,000 ton building took little more than a year to complete at a total cost of $40,948,000. On May 1st, 1931, President Herbert Hoover pressed the button that turned the building's exterior lights on.

Hollywood didn't miss its chance to use the Empire State Building in its films. In the 1934 classic, King Kong, the gorilla climbed to the top of the building with Fay Ray in hand and, in 2005, he loved it so much, he did it again with Peter Jackson's 2005 remake of the classic movie. Empire sparred no lack of romance in the 1957 film An Affair to Remember, and in 2010, the Empire State Building was again the center piece in the movie Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief.

The Empire State Building stands exactly 1,453 feet, 8 9/16th inches high, with 102 floors, including an observatory on the 86th floor. it is one of the most striking art deco structures to be built and, of course, one of the most popular New York attractions.

The building has dominated the New York City skyline for over sixty-five years and has been and will remain a landmark of distinction for New York City and the world.

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