Empire State Building

View the empire from the top

Empire State Building

Empire State Building

The Empire State Building is an art deco 103 story skyscraper in the heart of midtown Manhattan.

It was the world’s tallest building for 40 years until the World Trade Center’s North Tower was completed in late 1970.

It’s been designated one of the seven wonders of the modern world and continues to stand as an icon of American culture.

The lobby is three stories high and features an aluminum relief of the skyscraper without the antenna, which was not added to the spire until 1952.

The lines to enter the observation decks are as legendary as the building itself. There are five of them: the sidewalk line, the lobby elevator line, the ticket purchase line, the second elevator line, and the line to get off the elevator and onto the observation deck.

The Empire State Building makes more money from tickets sales for its observation decks than it does from renting office space.

In 2009, the Empire State Building started a sustainability retrofit – reducing total energy usage by more than 38 percent and carbon emissions by 105,000 metric tons over the next 15 years.

The sustainability exhibit on the 2nd floor showcases some of the new technology and processes that went into the retrofit.

A combination of digital displays, sculptures, and sample of actual building materials that went into the retrofit are on display in the exhibit.

The “Dare to Dream” exhibit on the 80th floor captures the Empire State Building’s history and unique engineering and construction through historical photos, sketches, documents, and mementos from the more than 3400 workers who help shape it.

The exhibit pays tribute to the pioneering work of the architects, builders, and laborers of the day.

The open-air observation deck on the 86th floor has been the setting for dozens of television shows and movies, including Sleepless in Seattle in 1993.

The deck wraps around the building’s spire, providing a full 360 degree view of New York city.

Our vantage point gives us spectacular views of Central Park, the Hudson River and East River, the Brooklyn Bridge, Times Square, and the Statue of Liberty.

The outdoor observation deck has been visited by over 110 million tourists.

Getting to the 102nd floor is just as entertaining as the floor itself. The ride on the manually operated Otis elevator is an experience not to be missed.

Sixteen floors above the outdoor deck is the top deck which is fully enclosed and much smaller than the 86th floor deck.

From this floor, all of Central park is in full view. The grid of streets in Manhattan is revealed and skyscrapers up to 80 miles away can be seen on a clear day.

There’s a door with stairs ascending up to the 103rd floor, currently not open to the public. The 103rd floor was originally built as a disembarkation floor for airships tethered to the building’s spire, popular in the early days of the building.



About Chris Disdero

Occupation: Software Engineer; Favorite Languages: C++ C# Objective-C; Favorite Challenge: Connecting complex programs together so that elements of one UI interoperate within the other UI; Passions: Learning new things. Photography. Electronic Music. Astronomy. Model Railroad Miniatures, Designing web sites; Favorite Getaway: San Juan Island; Personal Motto: “No matter where you go, there you are.” View all posts by Chris Disdero

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