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Empire State Building Restores Glistening Art Deco Spire From The 1930s

Justine Golata Justine Golata

Empire State Building Restores Glistening Art Deco Spire From The 1930s

After a year-long restoration, the Empire State Building now looks as it first did in 1931!

You’ve seen the iconic spire of the Empire State Building shining bright above the city (or even lit up), but did you know the full story behind it?

During the time of the Skyscraper Race in the 1920s-30s, former vice president of General Motors and builder of the Empire State Building, Jacob Raskob, competed with the the Chrysler Building to construct the tallest skyscraper in New York City. In order to beat out the Chrysler Building, Raskob added a 200-foot spire to the Empire State Building claiming that “It needs a hat” as mentioned by 6sqft, bringing the entire structure to a total of 1,250 ft tall, surpassing the Chrysler Building.

Courtesy Empire State Realty Trust

But over the years it became weathered and was even littered with broadcasting equipment since it was actually once a prime spot for antennas! So, beginning in June of last year, the Empire State Realty Trust worked between the 88th and 103rd floors to remove unnecessary material and outdated antennas to revive this art deco spire. The spire’s aluminum panels were also power-washed, scrubbed, and coated in silver waterproof paint to bring back its original shine from the early 30s.

Courtesy Empire State Realty Trust
Courtesy Empire State Realty Trust

The Empire State Building reopened this summer at limited capacity and visitors are encouraged to view the newer observation spaces on the 80th and 102nd floors, as part of the Trust’s $165 million redevelopment of the building.

Courtesy Empire Realty Trust

Once again, New Yorkers can admire the spire in its original profile as it glistens in the skyline!

In other news: The Empire State Building Is Giving ‘COVID Couples’ Free Photoshoots 1,050 Feet Above NYC This October

featured image source: Courtesy Empire Realty Trust