The CHRYSLER BUILDING.... Inside or out, this Art Deco skyscraper is an amazing building to see. It was briefly the world's tallest building (for less than a year) before that honor was claimed by the Empire State Building in 1931. Designed by William Van Alen, it was the first building ever to top 1000 feet. Van Alen worked with Walter P. Chrysler to incorporate features of Chrysler automobile features into the architectural design. The eagles on the 61st floor were modeled after Plymouth hood ornaments. And, the corner ornamentation on the 31st floor were modeled after radiator caps on 1929 Chryslers.

Construction required 35 miles of pipe, 20,961 tons of steel, 3,826,000 bricks, and nearly 400,000 rivets. And, it was all beautifully assembled. It's a shame that it isn't a very tourist friendly place. You are only permitted to walk around the ground floor (and at Christmas you can only enter the doorway). Sit on the floor to take a picture of the ceiling mural? Not allowed. (I tried.) And, there were no tours to let you go up to the crown. But, in spite of all that, you can't help but leave the place inspired. I certainly was.


The rosetta in the center of the ceiling design.  
Copyright 2008 by Phillip Martin All rights reserved.