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The Chicago Traveler

The Skinny on Mather Tower

by Matt B on October 13th, 2008

mather tower

Mather Tower may be Chicago's slimmest skyscraper, but unfortunately, it has not always been the most physically fit.

Completed in 1928, the Mather Tower was originally meant to have a twin, but after the stock market crash of 1929, plans for the second building were canceled.1 The tower (just steps away from the Seventeenth Church) stands 521 feet tall (159 m), and due to its slenderness, it has the smallest floors of any skyscraper in downtown Chicago.2

Unfortunately, as beautiful as the tower and its abundant ornamentation are, the four-story cupola was declared structurally unsound in 2000 and had to be demolished for safety reasons. (Pieces of the terra cotta fa'ade had been falling off.) Two years later, a steel replacement was installed.

mather towermather tower

Photo credit (c/o Flickr) JohnnyRokkit, Kim Scarborough, corydalus

Mather Tower: 75 E Wacker Dr
Public trans: Bus # 2, 6, 10, 144, 146
Red Line train (Lake)
Brown/Green/Pink/Purple/Orange Line train (State)

1 Mather Tower. (2008). Retrieved October 12, 2008, from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Web site: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mather_Tower
2 Mather Tower, Chicago. (n.d.). Retrieved October 12, 2008, from Emporis.com Web site: http://www.emporis.com/en/wm/bu?id=mastreetrtower-chicago-il-usa

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POSTED IN: Architecture & Attractions

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