New York - Buffalo


Views from Broadway westbound (NY Route 130). The Rand Building is the one with the giant striped spire, and the Liberty Building is just to the left. With the power of zoom, I bring you an extreme closeup of the Liberty Building's architecture from the same vantage point.

World famous and halfway decent.

The McKinley Monument stands in Niagara Square just outside the largest city hall in the United States. Clearly it goes up above 10 stories, but just how high could it be?


Some of the detail at the 40-foot tall entrance. Considering where Buffalo is now, it's amazing how much grandeur and, well, expense went into this building. But consider that Buffalo is at the west end of the Erie Canal - before highways, even in the railroad era, that was THE route. (Even with railroads, there were transfers to and from ships, and no reason why Buffalo couldn't be a rail hub.) Buffalo was in the top 10 American cities until World War I, booming all the way up to at least 420,000 residents at a time when only three cities were above 1 million and winding up at 580,000 residents by 1950. The population now is only 270,000 thanks to the end of the Industrial Age.

The Art Deco detail is incredible at the very top of the half-dome half-spire, and the colors have not faded since this was constructed in 1931. That's right, this behemoth rose at the peak of the Great Depression. Yes, it created jobs, but... Wow.

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