The Empire State Building is a 102-story skyscraper located on Fifth Avenue between West 33rd and 34th Streets in Midtown, Manhattan, New York City. It has a height of 1,250 feet, and with its antenna included. Its name is derived from the nickname for New York, the Empire State and it stood as the worlds tallest building for nearly 40 years, from its completion in early 1931 until the topping out of the original World Trade Centers North Tower in late 1970. Following the September 11 attacks in 2001, the Empire State Building was again the tallest building in New York, the Empire State Building is currently the fifth-tallest completed skyscraper in the United States and the 34th-tallest in the world. It is also the fifth-tallest freestanding structure in the Americas, when measured by pinnacle height, it is the fourth-tallest building in the United States. The Empire State Building is an American cultural icon and it is designed in the distinctive Art Deco style and has been named as one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World by the American Society of Civil Engineers. The building and its street floor interior are designated landmarks of the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission and it was designated as a National Historic Landmark in 1986. In 2007, it was ranked number one on the AIAs List of Americas Favorite Architecture, the site of the Empire State Building was first developed as the John Thompson Farm in the late 18th century. At the time, a stream ran across the site, emptying into Sunfish Pond, beginning in the late 19th century, the block was occupied by the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel, frequented by The Four Hundred, the social elite of New York. The limestone for the Empire State Building came from the Empire Mill in Sanders, Indiana which is a town adjacent to Bloomington. The Empire Mill Land office is near State Road 37 and Old State Road 37 just south of Bloomington, the Bloomington, Bedford, and Oolitic area is known locally as the limestone capital of the world. The Empire State Building was designed by William F, the building was designed from the top down. The general contractors were The Starrett Brothers and Eken, and the project was financed primarily by John J. Raskob, the construction company was chaired by Alfred E. Smith, a former Governor of New York and James Farleys General Builders Supply Corporation supplied the building materials. John W. Bowser was project construction superintendent, excavation of the site began on January 22,1930, and construction on the building itself started on March 17—St. Patricks Day—per Al Smiths influence as Empire State, Inc. president, the project involved 3,400 workers, mostly immigrants from Europe, along with hundreds of Mohawk iron workers, many from the Kahnawake reserve near Montreal. According to official accounts, five died during the construction. Governor Smiths grandchildren cut the ribbon on May 1,1931, lewis Wickes Hines photography of the construction provides not only invaluable documentation of the construction, but also a glimpse into common day life of workers in that era. The construction was part of a competition in New York for the title of worlds tallest building
Seen from the air, 2012
The Waldorf Hotel (1893), which stood on the site of the Empire State Building until 1929
A worker bolts beams during construction; the Chrysler Building can be seen in the background.