It’s the American Independence Day once again and to celebrate this special day we are going to give you a glimpse of the most iconic construction projects ever made in American History. While it’s very rare for people to talk about buildings and mega structures during the day when heroes should be commemorated, we would like to tell the story of some structures that witnessed American history as well as the newer buildings that are making new history.
Today, construction is known as a major contributor to the U.S. economy. But if there are witnesses to the greatest events jotted down from the past, they are none other than the buildings. For a hundred years or over, some structures in the country are still standing tall and firm today. They survived all the tests of time including the wars of people and are now considered treasures of the country. From the Empire State Building to the fallen Twin Towers the American construction and architecture industries certainly have a lot to brag about.
After polling for the most noteworthy pieces of construction and architecture, we now present to you the top 10 most iconic buildings you can find across the country.
- Empire State Building
No top list is written without mentioning the Empire State Building. It is known worldwide for being the tallest building made during the great depression. It is the American symbol for strength amidst a disaster and has definitely made a lasting impression in the world of construction and architecture.
Located in Midtown Manhattan, New York, this super tall building was finished in just a year and 45 days (1930-1931), which only proves the excellence of the Americans in construction. It has a total of 102 stories and measures 443.2 meters in height. But it still has a roof that extends to up to 380 meters high. Some of its notable features include the ten million bricks used on its exterior and the 1,886 kilometers of elevator cable used in its interior.
- The White House
Whoever misses the White House in a top list like this? The White House is another popular building in the US and did you know that it’s been standing in Washington, D.C. since the 1700s? Yes! The White House was actually made between 1792 and 1800 and it was designed by the Architect James Hoban.
The White House serves as the U.S. president’s executive residence and executive office building where he carries out most of his duties. The building has other various sections including the Blair house and the east and west wings. In total, the White House has 132 rooms, where the most famous of them all include the oval office and the press conference room. But it shouldn’t be too boring with the bowling alley and chocolate shop somewhere in the house.
- United States Capitol
Otherwise known as the Capitol Building, this structure is situated on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. This building was constructed almost at the same timing as the White House, finally opening its doors in 1800. It has 600 rooms in total and most of them serve as the main location for Congress meetings and deliberations. More than those, though, the Capitol Building is the home to the state’s legislative branch.
The original building is now almost gone because of the modifications made to improve it. Some of the revisions made include the addition of the enormous dome as well as the expansion of the chambers in the building. It has a plain exterior, but it is famous around the world for its neoclassical style and large white dome. Besides being a hub for congress activities, the Capitol Building also has a huge gallery of American history and art that attracts over five million tourists annually.
- Brooklyn Bridge in New York
The Brooklyn Bridge in New York City is probably one of the most complicated construction and engineering feats in modern history. Built between 1869 and 1883, the Brooklyn Bridge claimed the lives of about 27 construction workers while it was being built. Today, it connects Brooklyn and Manhattan and serves as an accessory to New York City’s iconic skyline.
- Transamerica Pyramid
One of the most notable construction projects in the 1960s is the Transamerica Pyramid in San Francisco, California. It is only the second-tallest building in the city but has made an impression because of its unique appearance. The building is made up of 48 floors and stands at 260 meters high. It is divided into two wings where one uses an elevator while the other one only has a staircase. The pyramid was constructed with aluminum panels at the top where the symbol of hope called “Crown Jewel” is ignited during holidays.
- Hoover Dam
The Hoover Dam in Nevada deserves a spot in this list of impressive construction projects as it is one of the most massive concrete structures in the U.S. It was finished in 1935 before the World War 2, and just like the Empire State Building, the Hoover tam was also the tallest of its kind at the time it was completed. It stands in the way of the Colorado River to create a source of hydroelectric power to be distributed to homes in the southwestern United States.
The most notable features of the dam, though, lies in the phase before the groundbreaking ceremony. The project was taken over by six construction and engineering companies that had to join forces to construct the dam. Just imagine the kind of collaboration they had to establish back then when technologies like ours, especially construction project management software, are non-existent. It could’ve been very challenging but the dam still stands strong today.
The dam employed over 21,000 people during the Great Depression, so thousands of folks from the west were helped during the trying time.
- Golden Gate Bridge
The bridge to another part of the world, the Golden Gate Bridge, remains to be an icon on the west coast and continues to inspire the architectural world. The bridge was completed in 1937, during the Great Depression. Like the Hoover Dam, it has then created thousands of jobs to tackle the issues of unemployment in the country.
The Golden Gate Bridge held the record for the world’s longest suspension bridge for 44 years. Over time, it has already withstood different calamities including earthquakes and extreme weather.
A fun fact about the Golden Gate Bridge is that it is the first-ever construction project to require a hard hat in the American job site history! And instead of orange, it was almost painted with yellow and black stripes.
- John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum
The museum is located in Boston, overlooking Dorchester Bay. This architectural piece was designed by I.M. Pei and it opened in 1979. The architect used his experience in designing with geometric shapes to create the 125-foot tall concrete museum and theater. It looks like a puzzle of merging shapes on a highly landscaped that creates an all-encompassing design.
- Dulles International Airport
The maker of the Dulles International Airport, Eero Saarinen, was also the make of the famous St. Louis Gateway Arch of 1947. Making another history in the architectural world, he designed the airport which opened in 1962 in New York City. The architect made extensive research of passenger movements in airports, and from there, he made a long and narrow terminal for the Dulles International Airport. Since then, his design has been copied by numerous airports from all over the world.
- Wilshire Grand Center
Los Angeles boasts a 1,100-foot skyscraper named Wilshire Grand Center that’s situated on the bustling Financial District of L.A. It is still currently the tallest building in the city and the state of California. It is also the 11th tallest building in the United States.
The Wilshire Grand Center serves many purposes including hotel rooms, offices, a shopping mall, and observation decks.
The original hotel in this building that existed in 1952 used to welcome prominent guests including President John F. Kennedy and Pope John Paul II. But it has gone though modification where the current design was made by the LA-based architectural company called A.C. Martin Partners.
Made in the U.S.A.
The Americans definitely have a lot of megastructures and impressive construction and architectural wonders to boast to the world. The ten projects we listed are all symbols of American history. And like the wars and famines we won, the construction industry also has heroes who risk their lives every day as they go to the site to build our nation into a stronger and more modern one. So cheers to all the people in this industry. You are heroes too and Happy 4th of July to you from us at Pro Crew Schedule!