Monday, May 21, 2012

Mystery Butt-Fugly Building of the Week-- May 21st

Center City One

1326 Spruce Street

                     This has to be one of the ugliest buildings over 250 feet tall. Center City One is a butt-fugly brutalist behemoth that has tarnished the 1300 block of Spruce for the last 38 years. Though built somewhat recently, its so nasty looking that no one wants to own up to developing or designing it. This sidewalk-structured shitsnack has a million things working against it.
                    The land this brutal piece of shit sits on started its development life as the same kind of large 1830's-50's era rowmansions you can find on the rest of Spruce Street east of Broad. 

Spruce and Juniper in 1930. The houses are already almost 100 years old in this pic.
                     By the 1940's, the site of Center City One was a generational surface parking lot. It would stay that way until 1974, when the giant concrete shitbird was built. Who built it, who designed it, who developed it, whose dumbass idea it was in the first place, are all a mystery. Where the fuck did this ugly thing come from?
                      Whoever designed this shit really dropped the ball. First of all, there are no other 270-foot buildings even close to this thing. The Atlantic Building is the only thing that's similarly tall, but its on the other side of Broad Street. I usually enjoy a nice tall building, but this one is so fucking ugly, it makes me understand the NIMBY mentality. You can't avoid looking at this thing!

View of the building from NIMBY-occupied territory.
                    Second, the entire motherfucker is exposed concrete... did anyone think for a second what it might look like 40 years later? The facade is browned-up and shitty looking like any 40 year old sidewalk. Ever see this building when it rains? It becomes all moist and dark brown. In this case, I'm not exaggerating when I say IT LOOKS LIKE SHIT!!!
                    Third, Center City One does a really shitty job of meeting the street. The street-level retail is set back in a dark cave. No one walking by even notices that there's stores there. A few years ago, they put up sideways-facing signs to make the stores more noticeable, but they look like ass. Here's another feature of the building that changes for the worse when it rains. Due to its cave-like qualities, the street-level becomes inundated with bums during the slightest precipitation.

Cave of darkness on a perfectly sunny day.

                       What a shitty building. I understand why someone would not want to admit that this pile of buttfruit is their creation. So who was it? You? You? or YOUUUU?!?!!


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