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  #1  
Old Posted Jan 4, 2013, 6:42 PM
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DETROIT | Penobscot Building | 664 FT Spire | 1928

Classic Art Deco.

Seen from above, it is built in the shape of an H, typical of high rise buildings of its time. It is easily identifiable with it's many setbacks leading up to a spire. It was the tallest building in all of Michigan until the Ren Cen was completed in 1977. (I'll probably add more history about it later, im lazy atm).

The spire is capped with a large red aviation orb that has recently been turned back on after 5 years of nights gone unlit. As if a metaphor for the spirit of the city it's in.

Today, it still stands as an iconic example of Art Deco high rises like the Empire State Building of the Midwest (at least I think so). I personally like it from a distance because it makes that perfect cone silhouette.



















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  #2  
Old Posted Jan 4, 2013, 8:19 PM
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The Penobscot Building was designed by local architect Wirt C. Rowland who also designed the nearby Buhl and Guardian Buildings. Like the Guardian, the Penobscot features Native American motifs although these details are dwarfed by the size of the building.


Photo credit: me/flickr

Below is a detail from a spandrel:

Photo credit: Bill Yagerlener/flickr

Above the main entrance:

Photo credit: Bill Yagerlener/flickr

On SSC someone commented that the Penobscot Building was "a poor man's ESB", but that person did not realize that the Penobscot was completed 3 years before the Empire State Building. Its "modern" shape may have even influenced the design of the ESB.

I like this building enough to build a 11 foot high LEGO model.
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  #3  
Old Posted Jan 4, 2013, 8:47 PM
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Painfully good deco.
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  #4  
Old Posted Jan 4, 2013, 9:17 PM
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World class beauty with uglyish antennae.
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  #5  
Old Posted Jan 4, 2013, 9:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MolsonExport View Post
World class beauty with uglyish antennae.
Can't really make them all that pretty. The ESB's saving grace is that it's 10x bigger and has more detailing.


Empire State Building Spire by Arathrael, on Flickr

Back in the good ol days of simple telecommunications, the antenna looked quite clean.


http://dlxs.lib.wayne.edu/cgi/i/imag...-11759%5D11759
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  #6  
Old Posted May 24, 2014, 12:31 PM
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  #7  
Old Posted May 26, 2014, 1:43 AM
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A real beauty. It looks amazing at night too.
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  #8  
Old Posted May 26, 2014, 2:12 AM
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Now that you mention it, here are some more lovely night shots.


Penobscot - with a cherry on top by mgsmith, on Flickr


Detroit from Downriver by rexp2, on Flickr


Detroit March 30, 2013 by Paul Higginbottom, on Flickr


Detroit by Paul Higginbottom, on Flickr


Detroit from Windsor by philbabbey, on Flickr
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  #9  
Old Posted Nov 2, 2014, 6:51 PM
Detroit1995 Detroit1995 is offline
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Beautiful Pictures!

Thank you to everyone who shared those amazing photographs! The Penobscot Building has always been my favorite Detroit skyscraper. Hopefully, this building will be preserved for decades to come. We must never lose this building and if we do, it would be one of the city's greatest architectural losses IMO. There's too many to count, sadly, but man what the city would be like if the Hammond, Old City Hall, Majestic, Hudson's, and Train Depot were still around.
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Old Posted Nov 3, 2014, 12:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Detroit1995 View Post
We must never lose this building and if we do, it would be one of the city's greatest architectural losses IMO.
Not just the city's, the country's. That is one great-looking building.
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