Minneapolis: The Metropolitan Building
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Author:  The Possum [ Fri Sep 27, 2013 8:43 pm ]
Post subject:  Minneapolis: The Metropolitan Building

The Metropolitan Building, 308 Second Avenue South, Minneapolis, Minnesota. Designed by E. Townsend Mix in Richardsonian Romanesque style with rusticated lower stories. Built 1888, razed 1961. Height: 220 feet. Materials: green granite, red sandstone. This twelve-story building featured a roof garden with a restaurant patronized by Minneapolis' high society, an observation tower, and a skylight over an atrium with iron balconies. ... 85333.html
The city's powerful Housing and Redevelopment Authority (HRA) laid out its case for the building's destruction in a September 1961 Minneapolis Star op/ed piece, written by general counsel Ben Palmer. The bottom line: It was old, it was ugly, it was in the way, and it had to go. End of argument. Although they put up a good fight, the building's owners and many admirers didn't stand a chance.

What's odd is how the HRA's public- sector leadership seemed obsessed with the economic viability of a privately owned venture. Given the opportunity, the HRA argued, the Met's tenants would flee from its dowdiness, even though the building was 98 percent occupied in 1958 and generated $300,000 a year in revenues for its owners. Still, the long process of condemnation started in May 1959.

The HRA and its director, Robert Jorvig, enlisted the formidable influence of the city's fire marshal, who initially declared the building a firetrap. Shortly before demolition, he revised his opinion, endorsing the building's preservation and considerably cutting his cost estimate of a fire-safety retrofit. But by then it was too late.


Author:  Fourth and Main [ Fri Sep 27, 2013 9:43 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Minneapolis: The Metropolitan Building

It reminds me of the Bradbury Building in Los Angeles, which is still standing. The interiors of these Victorian highrises are so beautiful. There was some good news recently concerning this building. They found where the stonework was dumped and can possibly bring back at least a piece of this building.


Author:  The Possum [ Sun Sep 29, 2013 2:30 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Minneapolis: The Metropolitan Building

Here's 28 minutes of unedited color video taken just prior to demolition:


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