1200 Landmark Center

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iamjacobm
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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby iamjacobm » Fri Feb 10, 2017 9:23 am

I imagine a big chunk of that 5-15 million they mentioned would be for tenant build out, but it is nice to hear the new owners are looking to spruce up the base too.

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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby iamjacobm » Fri Feb 10, 2017 11:28 am

http://www.omaha.com/money/landmark-tower-could-get-boutique-hotel-buyers-say/article_53a069e8-efa5-11e6-9e76-079aaecdbd02.html

A quarter-century after opening as a premiere downtown office and retail complex, the Landmark could go through a metamorphosis — one that adds a boutique hotel.

It’s an option under consideration by a group planning to buy the property near 13th and Farnam Streets, said Jason Fisher, an investor heading the acquisition he expects to be final this month.


Hotel would be a great addition!

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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby skinzfan23 » Fri Feb 10, 2017 11:44 am

I agree....that would be a very welcome addition. That tower has some of the best views of downtown. Granted the top two floors are occupied, but there might still be some other high levels available.

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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby RockHarbor » Fri Feb 10, 2017 12:58 pm

Interesting.

I remember when that Landmark Center was announced to be built back around 1988-1989, I was so excited, because Omaha was finally getting a "glass skyscraper." Nowadays, I still find myself liking it, when strolling in the mall, a glassy facade reflecting the evening light, the set of triangles lit up, looking kinda dramatic. But, backing up from the skyline, I'm not crazy about it. For example, it's a design that is hard for me to imagine on the Denver, Minneapolis, or KC skyline for example, it is so "elementary" and simple. A box skyscraper (like the Woodmen) is too, but a box skyscraper still has a simple, much-applauded acceptance & elegance. This is a glass box w/ a set of 4 triangles on the top. It feels empty to me...a design that means nothing more than what triangles & peaks mean on a strip mall. Still, it is OK...I guess.

I learn it was designed by an outside firm (from the Chicago area, I think), which makes sense to me, because it doesn't have the "feel" of an Omaha-based architect to me. That building doesn't "feel" like "OMAHA" to me. It feels like it was inserted by an outside source, that doesn't know this town -- like many of us do.
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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby GetUrban » Fri Feb 10, 2017 1:01 pm

A boutique hotel would fit the location well.
Too bad the data center couldn't be re-purposed too. That would be a prime location to reinvigorate the frontage along the GLM into much more people- intensive uses. Allocating the space to boring racks of computers that nobody ever sees was a terrible waste of space for such a prime location right next to the GLM, even though the Landmark Center was a good development, at least the tower, parking and retail portions. Too bad it blocked-off 12th street between the GLM and OM.

It was designed by the Hollabird & Root, by the way. That firm goes way back to the late 1800s. Great to get some new outside architectural excitement injected into Omaha occasionally, IMO.
Last edited by GetUrban on Fri Feb 10, 2017 1:07 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby MTO » Fri Feb 10, 2017 1:05 pm

While they're at it demo that god forsaking parking garage!
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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby RockHarbor » Fri Feb 10, 2017 1:08 pm

GetUrban wrote:A boutique hotel would fit the location well.
Too bad the data center couldn't be going away too. That would be a prime location to re-purpose the frontage along the GLM into much more people- intensive uses. Allocating the space to boring racks of computers that nobody ever sees was a terrible waste of space for such a prime location right next to the GLM, even though the Landmark Center was a good development, at least the tower, parking and retail portions. Too bad it blocked-off 12th street between the GLM and OM.

It was designed by the Hollabird & Root, by the way. That firm goes way back to the late 1800s. Great to get some new outside architectural excitement injected into Omaha occasionally, IMO.


I'm not saying that I'm against an outside firm designing something for Omaha, just to be clear... (For example, Minneapolis' 3 "giants" are all designed by outside firms.) I just meant that I could tell that it wasn't done by somebody locally. It feels like something inserted by an outside source -- which it is.

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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby RockHarbor » Fri Feb 10, 2017 9:46 pm

MTO wrote:While they're at it demo that god forsaking parking garage!


That's something I was kinda thinking about after posting here today. I wasn't thinking about the parking garage. (Is it that awful, btw?) But, I was thinking & wondering about that oblong section that is adjacent to the parking garage. When it was all built, it was BETA WEST, I remember. And, that was a computer/data center. So, the window patterns in that section are a little strange along the park (as I always thought they needed wall space for mainframe computers within, or something). What is that used for nowadays?

If there is no more "computer/data center", can we just eliminate that section, and tear it down? It doesn't have any architectural value -- imo.

Yes, it was all designed by that Hollabird & Root. I looked that up years back. I remember I clicked on their website (off Wikipedia), and I looked at their portfolio. If I remember right, I couldn't find the Landmark Center featured in their portfolio at all. I could be wrong, though -- I'm just going on memory.

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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby buildomaha » Fri Feb 10, 2017 10:22 pm

RockHarbor wrote:
MTO wrote:While they're at it demo that god forsaking parking garage!


That's something I was kinda thinking about after posting here today. I wasn't thinking about the parking garage. (Is it that awful, btw?) But, I was thinking & wondering about that oblong section that is adjacent to the parking garage. When it was all built, it was BETA WEST, I remember. And, that was a computer/data center. So, the window patterns in that section are a little strange along the park (as I always thought they needed wall space for mainframe computers within, or something). What is that used for nowadays?

If there is no more "computer/data center", can we just eliminate that section, and tear it down? It doesn't have any architectural value -- imo.

Yes, it was all designed by that Hollabird & Root. I looked that up years back. I remember I clicked on their website (off Wikipedia), and I looked at their portfolio. If I remember right, I couldn't find the Landmark Center featured in their portfolio at all. I could be wrong, though -- I'm just going on memory.

Who thought it was a good idea to allow someone to build a data center in the middle of downtown along the mall...

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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby PotatoeEatsFish » Fri Feb 10, 2017 10:47 pm

The Landmark is still my favorite tower in Omaha.
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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby RockHarbor » Fri Feb 10, 2017 11:23 pm

buildomaha wrote:
RockHarbor wrote:
MTO wrote:While they're at it demo that god forsaking parking garage!


That's something I was kinda thinking about after posting here today. I wasn't thinking about the parking garage. (Is it that awful, btw?) But, I was thinking & wondering about that oblong section that is adjacent to the parking garage. When it was all built, it was BETA WEST, I remember. And, that was a computer/data center. So, the window patterns in that section are a little strange along the park (as I always thought they needed wall space for mainframe computers within, or something). What is that used for nowadays?

If there is no more "computer/data center", can we just eliminate that section, and tear it down? It doesn't have any architectural value -- imo.

Yes, it was all designed by that Hollabird & Root. I looked that up years back. I remember I clicked on their website (off Wikipedia), and I looked at their portfolio. If I remember right, I couldn't find the Landmark Center featured in their portfolio at all. I could be wrong, though -- I'm just going on memory.

Who thought it was a good idea to allow someone to build a data center in the middle of downtown along the mall...


I wonder... I just know that BETA WEST company is gone now (and I would have to research what happened to that company), and we have that oblong data center just sitting there, stretching all along the south side of the mall. Before this discussion, I didn't think much about it, because it has always been part of the tower, and I figured it was being used. But, is it? Or, is it technically empty?

PotatoeEatsFish: Glad you do. I'm sure many Omahan's like it. I like the Landmark Center tower best when I'm able to view the base (w/ the pillars), the body, and the top (the set of triangles) together. I also like the unique lines on the facade. I like the blue glass. However, I feel it only works alright here, because most of Omaha's major modern structures are basic & simplistic. (I'm not talking about the latest editions, the First National Tower & UP building, built later.)

Looking at the Omaha skyline from the mall, the Landmark Center has a similar & overall matching shape compared to the concrete 1979 telephone building across the mall to the north. They are both broad, squarish buildings w/ slants at the top corners.

If the building were set in Downtown Sioux Falls or Fargo (smaller cities w/ simplistic, basic modern buildings) as the tallest structure, I think it would also work fine. Instead of just a glass box dominating their skyline, it is one dressed up a bit w/ some pillars around the base, and triangular peaks lit-up at night... However, if I butted it up against Minneapolis's or KC's or Denver's buildings (skylines with more complex, notable, sharp architecture w/ a more poignant quality), I think it would look silly & too basic. If I saw a concrete skeleton going up in those towns, and the result was a building like the Landmark Center, I would probably chuckle w/ absolute surprise and think: "That's their new building? An average-height glass box w/ some simple triangles at the top?" That's what I mean...

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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby iamjacobm » Fri Feb 10, 2017 11:49 pm

It was in the article posted today that Centurylink uses the data center and employs 100 in the space and owns it separate from the tower. It's not going anywhere.

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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby RockHarbor » Sat Feb 11, 2017 12:11 am

So nice to know! Thanks for giving the info... I was really starting to get curious. (It's not that I necessarily want it torn down, if it is being used. I'm used to it sitting w/ the tower, as a complex. It's more: If it is empty, and they can't utilize it well, it is not some beloved, beautiful downtown structure worth keeping around, imo.)

Speaking of mixed opinions on buildings, I have Denver's newest architecture guide, and the critic didn't feel Denver's 1801 California Street (https://www.emporis.com/images/show/651 ... e-west.jpg) was even worth an entry. That's pretty bad, especially when it was the city's first major skyscraper. I understand why, as it isn't necessarily "great architecture", but I still find myself warming up to that octagonal skyscraper. I also have Minneapolis's latest architecture guide, and the critic didn't feel the playful 5th Street Towers (http://static.panoramio.com/photos/orig ... 503332.jpg) were worth an entry either. Again, I understand why, but I still find myself liking them. So, people having mixed feelings about a city's particular building -- like this Landmark Center -- is only natural.

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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby GetUrban » Sat Feb 11, 2017 11:25 am

Regarding Landmark Center, you have to keep in mind that it was originally built to meet the programmatic needs of the people/companies who were going to occupy it, much more so than the effect the building might have on the Omaha skyline or GLM. Sometimes we seem to lose sight of that fact. The user's programmatic needs determined the size and configuration of the building. The aesthetics of the building did break some new ground in Omaha, in that the architect did not try to obviously copy other existing buildings in its use of materials and detailing.
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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby Omaha Cowboy » Sat Feb 11, 2017 2:23 pm

GetUrban wrote:Regarding Landmark Center, you have to keep in mind that it was originally built to meet the programmatic needs of the people/companies who were going to occupy it, much more so than the effect the building might have on the Omaha skyline or GLM. Sometimes we seem to lose sight of that fact. The user's programmatic needs determined the size and configuration of the building. The aesthetics of the building did break some new ground in Omaha, in that the architect did not try to obviously copy other existing buildings in its use of materials and detailing.


This is a good point..

I lived close to downtown in the 1990's. I had a Birdseye view as this building was going up.. When 1200 Landmark was being constructed in 1990, if memory serves, the original design plan for this building was not as elaborate as the end result.. I remember reading, shortly after Landmark was completed, the architect wanted to add a special dynamic to the building not seen in downtown Omaha at the time.. Hence the unique roofline design etc...

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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby RockHarbor » Sat Feb 11, 2017 8:37 pm

What you both said makes perfect sense. I kinda sensed those ideas behind the creation of that building. It is, of course, very functional -- a boxy tower attached to a boxy data center. (Functional...like all boxy buildings are. "Forms follows function.") The blue glass facade & quad set of triangular peaks at the apex was something Omaha hadn't seen downtown before. So, at the time, I was excited about it, too...

Don't get me wrong; I still like things about it. I especially like this angle (able to view the base, body, and top), and in this particular lighting (which makes the glass look a silvery color): https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/ ... _Omaha.jpg

However, stepping back from the skyline, I dislike the tower from this angle, where the base is obstructed & the body looks chunky & squat. I also don't like the jagged top (almost a slight Gothic or Medieval touch, reminding me almost of a castle's parapet feature) visually set in front of the Wooden Tower. https://www.coldwellbanker.com/content/ ... 40x800.jpg

A Medieval castle's parapet: http://www.michtoy.com/michtoy/Picture2_HAN-9512Cb.jpg

The building is "modern architecture", of course -- but not a classic, textbook example of any defined style of architecture (in my view). It isn't intended to have a Gothic feel, but that top slightly gives that (in my view). Therefore, what is it, really? It just feels like "empty architecture" on Omaha's skyline -- ultimately, to my soul. I mentioned the triangles & peaks designed cosmetically on a suburban strip mall. Same thing... They help jazz things up, but they don't mean much.

If the Landmark Center was truly great design, I would think other average-height, "filler" buildings would be out there that were similar to it, in other cities. But, I can't think of one. Nobody's borrowed it, nobody seems inspired by it, nobody seems to want to copy it. It's a blue glass box w/ a jagged line of glass triangles at the top, like a castle's teethy parapet. (Pittsburgh & St. Louis have Gothic-inspired skyscrapers with some glass peaks/triangles, but they are way more intricate structures. However, Pittsburgh's skyscraper is the more notable tower.) Same with our 1979 concrete telephone building. I can only think of ONE other city that has a building similar, and that is Baltimore, MD. That look obviously never became popular and well-liked, and I think it is understandable. (Who loves our telephone building?)

On the other side of the coin, the 1969 Woodmen Tower & the 1972 First National Bank both are easily definable as "International Style" buildings, which were very popular across the country. There's a stylish elegance to a boxy skyscraper.

The 1972 bank's facade (broad bands of black glass bisected by white narrow lines of marble -- a look they even carried out to their 1989 suburban tower in Old Mill, I'm sure for the sake of continuing their same architectural image) is a stylish look that was popular in the 70's & used frequently across the country. Even Council Bluffs has a nice example of this downtown. That's one of our buildings I'm most proud of in Omaha, especially after Indianapolis sadly lost their grand & perfect example, the Indiana National Bank: https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com ... 9j6diL.jpg (It had a corner damaged heavily in a storm, so they remodeled the exterior, then a 2nd time. It now has a silvery, glass facade...)

Furthermore, Daly's much-loved 2001 First National Center has similar examples out there. And, UP's 2002 green "high-tech box" design was also popular in cities at that time.

It's ultimately difficult putting into words what I mean...

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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby zedmib » Sat Feb 11, 2017 11:43 pm

"Beta West" was actually USWest (at least the real estate arm) that built the datacenter. USWest->Qwest->Centurylink. The datacenter was quite the state of the art facility when it opened. Five floors of raised floor space, each floor was about 30,000 sq ft just for computer space. It has a double wall construction for bomb protection. That is why the odd window arrangement on the north side.
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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby GetUrban » Sun Feb 12, 2017 10:10 am

RockHarbor wrote:What you both said makes perfect sense. I kinda sensed those ideas behind the creation of that building. It is, of course, very functional -- a boxy tower attached to a boxy data center. (Functional...like all boxy buildings are. "Forms follows function.") The blue glass facade & quad set of triangular peaks at the apex was something Omaha hadn't seen downtown before. So, at the time, I was excited about it, too...

Don't get me wrong; I still like things about it. I especially like this angle (able to view the base, body, and top), and in this particular lighting (which makes the glass look a silvery color): https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/ ... _Omaha.jpg

However, stepping back from the skyline, I dislike the tower from this angle, where the base is obstructed & the body looks chunky & squat. I also don't like the jagged top (almost a slight Gothic or Medieval touch, reminding me almost of a castle's parapet feature) visually set in front of the Wooden Tower. https://www.coldwellbanker.com/content/ ... 40x800.jpg

A Medieval castle's parapet: http://www.michtoy.com/michtoy/Picture2_HAN-9512Cb.jpg

The building is "modern architecture", of course -- but not a classic, textbook example of any defined style of architecture (in my view). It isn't intended to have a Gothic feel, but that top slightly gives that (in my view). Therefore, what is it, really? It just feels like "empty architecture" on Omaha's skyline -- ultimately, to my soul. I mentioned the triangles & peaks designed cosmetically on a suburban strip mall. Same thing... They help jazz things up, but they don't mean much.

If the Landmark Center was truly great design, I would think other average-height, "filler" buildings would be out there that were similar to it, in other cities. But, I can't think of one. Nobody's borrowed it, nobody seems inspired by it, nobody seems to want to copy it. It's a blue glass box w/ a jagged line of glass triangles at the top, like a castle's teethy parapet. (Pittsburgh & St. Louis have Gothic-inspired skyscrapers with some glass peaks/triangles, but they are way more intricate structures. However, Pittsburgh's skyscraper is the more notable tower.) Same with our 1979 concrete telephone building. I can only think of ONE other city that has a building similar, and that is Baltimore, MD. That look obviously never became popular and well-liked, and I think it is understandable. (Who loves our telephone building?)


I just don't see any reference to "gothic" or crenelated "castle" architecture in that building and definitely not any relation to any suburban strip malls. To me, the Landmark Center relates, in a subtle & restrained way, more to Norman Foster's mid 80s very popular Hong Kong Bank and to a lesser extent Richard Roger's Lloyds of London building, with their exterior structural expressionism.
Image
Hong Kong Bank

Image
Image
Lloyds of London
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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby Athomsfere » Sun Feb 12, 2017 10:31 am

I still don't get the disdain for the Landmark Center building. I really like this building and feel it adds a lot to the skyline:

ImageDSC_1800 by Athomsfere, on Flickr

Really my only gripe is probably the width from the river, but it blends just about right while still standing out and adding something.

But I also think the Woodmen Tower is Omaha's ugliest high rise. Never liked the international style. Not even the WTC...

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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby PotatoeEatsFish » Sun Feb 12, 2017 12:19 pm

Athomsfere wrote:I still don't get the disdain for the Landmark Center building. I really like this building and feel it adds a lot to the skyline:

ImageDSC_1800 by Athomsfere, on Flickr

Really my only gripe is probably the width from the river, but it blends just about right while still standing out and adding something.

But I also think the Woodmen Tower is Omaha's ugliest high rise. Never liked the international style. Not even the WTC...


You and me both, if I ever bought the Woodmen I would either redo it or tear it down for a new tower.
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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby Athomsfere » Mon Feb 13, 2017 7:21 am

PotatoeEatsFish wrote:You and me both, if I ever bought the Woodmen I would either redo it or tear it down for a new tower.


You'd be martyred by the Forgotten Omaha people.

I really don't know what I'd so given the opportunity to shake up Omaha's skyline. Probably building something tall further south than the current cluster of highrises.

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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby RockHarbor » Mon Feb 13, 2017 11:29 am

zedmib: Thanks for that info. I just figured that odd window arrangement had to do w/ something w/ the computers within. Even though I'm not crazy about the odd breaks in the windows, and the fact that it stretches along our mall, it is a nice-looking facility, imo.

GetUrban: I appreciate your opinion and I do enjoy hearing it, as we all can view the same thing differently. Architecture, a form of art, like art, is objective. I think of a movie and all the different critics' viewpoints of the same movie afterwards (all seen on IMDB). They are all often accurate, yet just different.

I personally would never think of the Hong Kong Bank or very unusual Lloyds of London building when viewing our 1200 Landmark Center, which I feel is pretty "ho hum" (sitting on the world stage, compared to all other architecture out there). I just don't see what you see -- at all. I'm trying to.
I'm honestly not a fan of Foster's architecture, personally, but that's just my taste. I'm not crazy about his Frankfurt skyscraper either. He brings something unique to the table for sure, though, and I feel the quality of his design is on a higher level than our 1200 Landmark Center.

I said the evenly-spaced triangular "spikes" on the 1200 Landmark Center give me a SLIGHT feel of Gothic or Medieval design. I think that is understandable with the link I provided to a castle's parapet, which has evenly-spaced, basic squares rising up, instead of basic triangles, aligned also w/ the facade, with no offset. Sometimes, those triangular spikes make me think of a spiky helmet, or maybe some crown, like some Medieval warrior or king wore (maybe like Ivan the Great/Terrible, or some character in that "Prince Valiant" comic strip, or somebody). I google imaged "spiky helmet" and found many examples. Here's a helmet: https://noveltystreet.com/wp-content/up ... Skull-.jpg (My point: Medieval items often feature triangular spikes.)

I mentioned St. Louis's & Pittsburgh's skyscrapers, which are definitely Gothic-influenced. They both have triangles & spikes -- like our Landmark Center. Pittsburgh's tower is a purposeful modern duplicate of London's Houses of Parliament (which are Gothic). St. Louis's tallest building (Metro Square) has definite Gothic influence, which truly matches that old river city which has much old Gothic design (such as big old, stone churches, old tudor houses, ect.).

Pittsburgh's PPG Place:
http://images.adsttc.com/media/images/5 ... 1392774768
http://www.schneiderdowns.com/UserFiles ... -plaza.jpg

St. Louis's Metro Square:
https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/ ... re_stl.jpg

I never mentioned the building reminds me of a strip mall. Because the building isn't intended to be Gothic, I said the set of triangles placed at the top of the Landmark Center remind me of a designer putting a set of evenly-spaced triangles (gables) on a strip mall. It jazzes things up to be more visually interesting, but it doesn't mean much. That's OK on a suburban strip mall -- not on a major downtown building, imo.

It's not that I don't like the Landmark Center in many ways -- in fact, I go back & forth. It is just that it doesn't really register as meaning or projecting anything much to me -- unlike the meaningful design touches on Pittsburgh's & St. Louis's skyscrapers.

I'm not sure if I'm unhappy about the Landmark Center, or about the fact that my hometown has a simple-looking enough skyline & architecture, that the 1200 Landmark Center actually fits just fine here, and is considered one of the neatest buildings. On the world stage, it is not even close to being a notable building, imo.
Last edited by RockHarbor on Mon Feb 13, 2017 10:26 pm, edited 5 times in total.

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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby RockHarbor » Mon Feb 13, 2017 9:36 pm

Ironically, I was driving through 133rd & Millard Ave this evening, and across the corner from each other are two examples of to further my point. (See pic.)

The rebuilt church used a linear march of triangular-shaped transom glass windows (evenly-spaced, just like the Landmark Center) to mimic old Gothic design (that was present on the original old church) in a more modern & abstract way. The design feels meaningful, imo. Gothic design often includes a line of arched windows, or arched doorways/entrances. (I'm not of that, or a, particular denomination, btw. I'm just talking about the historic architectural influences I easily recognize in the new church's design.)

Yet, the strip mall across the street also utilizes triangular shapes in the form of peaks jutting up from it's main facade w/ no offset (just like the Landmark Center) simply for cosmetic purposes, to add visual interest. It doesn't really mean anything, though. It isn't a Gothic touch -- of course. It feels empty, imo.

Another example of modern Gothic design: The entrance of Pittsburgh's PPG Place also uses a line of (evenly-spaced) triangular shapes, instead of historic Gothic arches, to put a "modern twist" on Gothic design. https://www.emporis.com/images/show/361 ... -plaza.jpg

That's what I'm trying to communicate here...
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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby skinzfan23 » Tue Mar 07, 2017 12:12 pm

Here is the picture you posted a link too: Thanks for sharing.

Image
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Re: 1200 Landmark Center

Postby Omaha Cowboy » Tue Mar 07, 2017 12:16 pm

Very nice.. that pic brings back some memories indeed..

Thanks for sharing and posting :thumb: ...

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