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13 The Seagram & MetLife Buildings

The Seagram & MetLife Buldings

The Seagram & MetLife Buldings
One of my design heroes created the Seagram building behind me here, a legendary German architect, Mies van der Rohe and he was famous, of course, for his less is more and God is in the details philosophy. When he came to create the Seagram building, he didn’t have the idea to create the world's tallest building, rather, he had his eyes firmly on the ground. He did something that had never been tried before, and that was setting the building 100 feet back from the roadside. That doesn’t sound like much, but at the time, New Yorkers were feeling more and more boxed in with the towers popping up all around them, and the Seagram building here, opened up a real oasis in the city where people could come, relax, have lunch, and feel human again. So it's a real good bit of German design, in which we can say, less building is more. We can see the MetLife Building a little bit further down Park Avenue there, and that first opened in 1963 as the Pan Am Building. It received a little bit of praise for being pedestrian friendly because it was built almost on top of Grand Central Terminal but other than that, it was a pretty hostile reception because they'd broken from the convention of constructing buildings on this north/south line between the avenues, and instead built it right across Park Avenue, on and east/west line completely blocking the views right up and down the avenue here. To be fair though, Grand Central Terminal was already blocking Park Avenue but the MetLife Building here, well, that soared way above that one.
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St Patrick's Cathedral

13 St Patrick's Cathedral

St Patrick's Cathedral

Central Park

Central Park

Central Park

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