325 Chestnut Street
|This is from a publicity photo of it and it still looks like taint.|
This building came about around the same time that the beautiful buildings of the 19th Century commericial district of Philadelphia were being destroyed one by one to make room for the Independence Historical Grass Lot Collection. Here's the corner the building now stands on as it looked in 1954, one year before construction:
Frank Binswanger, developer extraordinaire, was ready to spend $6 million on a brand new office building that would bring the neighborhood surrounding the coming Grass Lot Collection into the 20th Century. The NIMBY's of the time heroically attempted to get it stopped. After all, at this point a shitload of beautiful buildings were getting knocked down and a few more that weren't even part of the park would have to get demolished for this new 13-storey piece of shit.
The developer presented rendering after rendering.. at first it was to be a red-brick facaded structure, but later it was decided that this new building of a new age should be glass and aluminum. New Orleans architect Charles Colbert was brought in to design this trash, which was going to be known as the Mall Building, even though it wasn't on Independence Mall nor did it contain a shopping mall. Coincidentally, Colbert had designed many shopping malls in his career. Here's a few of the renders:
|I believe this is the earliest version of the glass and aluminum version of the building. It was rejected.|
|Closer, but not quite there yet.|
|This is the final design. I think I like the rejected shit better.|
|Under confucktion. Parking Lot across the street is areas that were being cleared in preparation for the Grass Lot Collection.|
By the early 1990's, this building, though only 40 years old, was starting to fall apart. The offices got down to an 80% vacancy and it seemed like the shitpile's days were numbered. In the late 90's, however, Kaiserman Management Group, the same motherfuckers behind the creation of another prominent butt-fugly building, took over the place and renovated the fuck out of it, causing 100% office/retail occupation and the inevitable survival of a building that could have been demolished by now. Thanks, dick.