Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Time Heals All Wounds: September 11th

Survivors all.

St. Paul's Chapel
Broadway between Fulton and Vesey Street
Thomas McBean, Architect
Tower and Steeple
James Crommelin Lawrence, Architect

Some suggest that it was God's hand that helped this steeple withstand the force of the attacks on the World Trade Center, the church's neighbor to the east. But as the oldest (and now only) extant pre-Revolutionary War building, this chapel saw more than its fair share of disasters (including fires in 1776 and again in 1832) before that horrific day six years ago. While its strength might have something to do with the divine spirit, the realist (and architectural preservationist) in me prefers to think that the Manhattan schist from which it was built had a little something to do with it.

Century 21
22 Cortlandt Street
Emory Roth & Sons, Architect
Refurbished and renovated in 2002

Defying the odds, New York's "best-kept" secret" (unless, of course, you've done jury duty downtown) re-opened less than six months after the attack. I shop, therefore I am a New Yorker?

formerly The New York Evening Post Building
20 Vesey Street
Robert D. Kohn, Architect

You might not be able to smoke inside this great old building, but at least you can still buy smokes in its lobby. Another testament to the unfailing (and still burning) New York spirit.

The sculptures on the building's facade were created by Gutzon Borglum, better known for a little group of busts he created in South Dakota.