Cass Gilbert’s design for a romantic, Gothic-inspired polychromatic terra-cotta exterior over a steel-cage tower joined Midwestern theories of structural expression with Eastern preferences for historical styles. Woolworth Building’s design embodied concepts elaborated in the post-World War I skyscrapers which permanently redefined the skyline of New York and the image of twentieth-century urban America. As the tallest building in the world for sixteen years it gained an international reputation.
The first floor of the Woolworth Building was built in an extraordinary Gothic-style design. It joins an arcade with a marble staircase hall. It is an excellent and well-executed programmatic design, illustrated with attributes of the Woolworth Company which ultimately became the Foot Locker Retail, Inc.
The design of the interior combined the spatial and symbolic requirements of Woolworth and of the Irving National Bank. In size, richness and conception the interior was unprecedented in New York skyscrapers, and it has rarely been equalled since its construction, in New York or elsewhere.
STATUS Designated Exterior and Interior Landmark
The area now known as Tribeca was originally developed in the early 19th century as a residential neighborhood close to the city’s center in Lower Manhattan. Its street grid was laid out at right angles off of Greenwich Street and on a diagonal off of...Explore the Neighborhood >
“I don’t know what the City would be without HDC. [They] testified before LPC time after time and helped us focus on the right issues. We would not be an historic district without HDC! ”
Doreen Gallo: DUMBO Neighborhood Alliance
“Use HDC as a resource because they know what they are doing and can offer advice on how to go about creating a district from every front: architectural, political, LPC, and the media. I had floundered prior to my involvement with this invaluable organization.”
Fern Luskin: Lamartine Place Historic District; Friends of Lamartine Place & Gibbons Underground Railroad Site
“HDC provided guidance and shared information during that process—we knew which Council members were going one way or another and we changed a few minds. I don’t think NoHo would have had as cohesive a district had it not been for HDC’s aid.”
Zella Jones: NoHo Historic District; NoHo East; and NoHo Extension
“I remember Richard saying at a meeting, we have someone here from HDC, Nadezhda Williams, Director of Preservation and Research, to help us. She said to us, ‘You are not the only ones going through this.’ HDC included us in an enormous community”
Erika Petersen: West End Preservation Society