My favorite building in all of New York is the Chrysler Building. The way the top shines in the sun and the way the tiers of the crown fold into one another until the spire is just beautiful. Ironically I use to frequently confuse it with the Empire State Building, even telling visiting friends the wrong thing. I simply assumed the prettiest tall building in the city was the most famous tall building in the city. Nope. The Empire State Building may be famous and it may have been the world’s tallest building for about 40 years, but honestly I think it looks like a concrete slab. The Chrysler Building has character. It looks old and unique. And, like it’s rival, it was once the world’s tallest building (if only for 11 months before it was surpassed by…the Empire State Building). Apparently I’m not alone in my love. In 2005 the Skyscraper Museum asked 100 people to rank their favorite buildings in New York, according to the New York Times, 90 of them chose the Chrysler Building.
I happened to walk by the building in the late afternoon recently and realized that over the course of the past year I had yet to take a single picture of the building. Appalling I know. How can I be so in love with this building, but not have a single photograph in its honor? So I pulled out my camera and snapped away along with all the tourists (who clearly realized the necessity of getting this particular picture sooner than I did). I’m just as certain, if not more so, that since its erection in 1930 the Chrysler Building is, without a doubt, an essential piece of architecture for New York. I can’t imagine, and I wouldn’t want to imagine, the city’s skyline without it.