America’s Most Endangered M+RP Places
For over a decade, the National Trust has focused attention on some of the most significant, and endangered, historic places from the recent past and the Modern design movement through its annual list of America's Eleven Most Endangered Historic Places. Learn more about these special, and at risk, properties and how you can help preserve these hallmarks of the familiar past.
Opened in 1966 as the centerpiece of Century City, the 19-story curved hotel has been a prominent Los Angeles landmark for more than four decades. Currently operating as a Hyatt Regency, a new owner has announced plans to raze the building and replace it with two 600-foot towers.
Completed in 1963, Miami Marine Stadium, on Virginia Key, is both a South Florida landmark and an icon of Modern design. Damaged in Hurricane Andrew, repairs were never completed on the stadium, and it remains vacant and deteriorating.
Sumner Elementary School, a National Historic Landmark, helped launch the nation's Civil Rights Movement as one of the schools at the center of the U.S. Supreme Court's (1954) ruling in Brown v. Board of Education. Vacant since 1996, the school suffered from deferred maintenance and sustained significant damage from water infiltration, neglect and vandalism.
When the Statler Hilton opened in downtown Dallas in 1956, it was hailed as the most modern hotel in the country. Its sheer size, bold form and innovative architectural features soon made it an icon of mid-20th-century design. Today, the building, once considered the crown jewel of the Hilton hotels, sits vacant.
Sleek and innovative and far ahead of its time, the 1963 Guthrie Theater was the focal point of Minneapolis' cultural life for more than four decades. In 2001, the theater company that occupied the Guthrie decided to build a new facility on a site several blocks away and the theater owner announced plans to demolish the building.
When it was completed in 1957, the headquarters of the Connecticut General Life Insurance Company in Bloomfield, Conn., was immediately recognized as a milestone in the history of modern architecture. In 1999, the Wilde building was deemed to have “outlived it usefulness” by its owner CIGNA, and was proposed for demolition.
When terrorists crashed two planes into the World Trade Centers on September 11, 2001, the Vesey Street staircase provided a path of escape for hundreds of people. In 2006, the staircase stood isolated and consisted only of concrete slabs and blocks, a few remaining pieces of stone cladding, and steel supports.
Since its completion in 1962, Eero Saarinen's curvilinear TWA Terminal at New York's JFK International Airport has been hailed as an icon of Modern design. In 2003, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey wanted to demolish portions of the terminal and construct a hulking new terminal behind it.
Created by architect Edward Durell Stone, 2 Columbus Circle is a nationally recognized - albeit controversial - icon of the Modern Movement. In 2004, a design proposed for a reuse scenario for the building threatened to strip 2 Columbus Circle of its architectural integrity with no preservation review.
Since 1956, Oklahoma City's Gold Dome Bank has been a shimmering vision of the future. One of the most recognizable sites in Oklahoma City, the 150-foot-diameter dome was an early example of the geodesic dome. After a successful tax credit project, the Gold Dome Bank had its grand opening on May 14, 2005.
With its 30-foot golden arches and shiny red-and-white striped tiles, the oldest surviving McDonald's (1953) symbolizes America's love affair with the automobile and fast food. In 1994, a lack of modern fast food amenities such as a drive through window and minor damage from the January 1994 Northridge Earthquake threatened the building with demolition.
Affectionately called "The Mother Road," Route 66 is known for quirky roadside attractions and unique mom-and-pop motels. In recent years, Route 66 motels in hot real-estate markets have been torn down at record rates, while in cold real-estate markets, motels languish and are being reclaimed by the forces of nature.
Families have been vacationing at the Jersey Shore for more than 100 years, and the Wildwood Doo Wop motels have been a major beach destination since they were constructed from 1956 to 1970. Though vacationers still flock to the Wildwoods today, more than 100 of the Doo Wop motels have fallen to the wrecking ball.
A little-known landmark of the recent past, the 1937 Kraigher House is an important example of the groundbreaking work of Richard J. Neutra, considered one of America's - and the world's - most important architects of Modernism. In 2004, the house had been vacant for years and was scarred by the effects of neglect and vandalism.