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Chrysler Building, New York City

  • 10

    Votes: 1,218 57.7%
  • 9.5

    Votes: 261 12.4%
  • 9

    Votes: 193 9.1%
  • 8.5

    Votes: 56 2.7%
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    Votes: 65 3.1%
  • 7.5

    Votes: 23 1.1%
  • 7

    Votes: 27 1.3%
  • 6.5

    Votes: 11 0.5%
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    Votes: 11 0.5%
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    Votes: 4 0.2%
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    Votes: 9 0.4%
  • 4.5

    Votes: 14 0.7%
  • 4

    Votes: 43 2.0%
  • 3.5

    Votes: 108 5.1%
  • 3 or less

    Votes: 68 3.2%
1 - 20 of 1042 Posts

Old School
144 Posts
Chrysler Building
New York, USA

HEIGHT: 319m/1,046 feet
FLOORS: 77 floors
ARCHITECT: William Van Alen

In the summer of 1929, a "race for the sky" broke out on the island of Manhattan. Automobile tycoon Walter Chrysler battled Wall Street powerhouse Bank of Manhattan Trust Company for the title of world's tallest building in what many historians consider to be the most intense race in skyscraper history. In the spring of 1930, just when it appeared that the bank might capture the coveted title, a small crew jacked a needle-thin spire hidden in Chrysler's building through the top of the crown to claim the title of worlds tallest at 1,046 feet.

Not only was the Chrysler Building the world's tallest structure, it was also one of the most decorated office buildings in the world. Chrysler wanted "a bold structure, declaring the glories of the modern age" -- and he got it. He decorated his skyscraper with hubcaps, mudguards, and hood ornaments, just like his cars, hoping that such a distinctive building would make his car company a household name. Today, the Chrysler Building is recognized as New York City's greatest display of Art Deco, a decorative style characterized by sharp angular or zigzag surface forms and ornaments.

Only four months after the completion of the Chrysler Building, the world's tallest championship title would be claimed by a new structure, the Empire State Building.


Senior Button Pusher
17,165 Posts
You guys have to understand that the set of zoning laws that NYC adopted in 1916 basically mandated that the bases of buildings look like that, to allow for maximum light penetration to the street below. Almost all towers from this time period had a rather "bland" looking , chunky base. Following the street contours as closely as possible was the best way to recoup what developers considered the "lost space" of setbacks. The resulting form was simply the best compromise between maximum profits (always important in highrise commerical architecture) and obeying the law.

Don't be that guy!
1,097 Posts
Isn't this the one in Jan's avatar? anyways I like it. Awsome cap to it. 10/10

Chrystler.... we salute you! This has got to be on atleat the top 10 favorite skyscrapers in everyone's list!


I can only think of about 5 skyscrapers that are 10/10 worthy, and this is one of them!

Champagne Socialist
12,270 Posts
I mean, really can you fault Chrysler ? I cant ;)


only thing I dislike is that it's really boxed in (density) but eh, it's still an absolutely fantastic pinacle in among boringness (the other crud around it).

1 - 20 of 1042 Posts