Blue Light Special

Posted by Steven (Chicagoland, United States) on 25 February 2010 in Cityscape & Urban and Portfolio.

Designed by Graham, Anderson, Probst & White, the Metropolitan Tower was originally named the Straus Building when completed in 1924. Though it was the first building in Chicago with 30 or more floors, it was never officially designated Chicago's tallest building since the Chicago Temple Building, also completed in 1924, is taller by 92 feet but has seven fewer floors. The Straus Building and the Chicago Temple Building were the first to take advantage of the 1923 zoning ordinance; before then, no building in Chicago could be taller than 260 feet.

This U-shaped building, standing at 475 feet in height, fronts Chicago's Michigan Avenue and Grant Park. The 40-foot pyramid at the top of the building, with its new zinc-coated stainless steel sheathing, is peaked by a 20-foot glass "beehive" ornament containing a blue glass box filled with six 1000-watt lightbulbs which emits a deep blue light, a prominent feature of Chicago's nighttime skyline. The beehive is supported by four limestone bisons. Because of this ornament, the building is sometimes referred to as the "Beehive Building."

Photo captured from the Adler Planetarium on February 14, 2010.

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6ft5 from stockholm, Sweden

I like the tones and colors here!
Next time you are in the area could you spoil me with your take on the Aqua Hotel and Residence Building? I love that house and it would be interesting to see it from your perspective :)

25 Feb 2010 7:37am

@6ft5: I saw a story on a recent award the architect won for this building and it was right after my latest excursion there. I'll be there again soon and hopefully I can get some good shots. :-)

Curly from South Shields, United Kingdom

Another cracking night shot, and although it looks old and sturdy, I wonder how it feels from the inside? All those windows suggests lots of offices, but I guess they won't be of the modern open plan variety.

25 Feb 2010 8:16am

@Curly: It's actually undergoing a massive conversion to residences. And they literally are having a "blue light special" on their prices. The prices have dropped almost 50%...down from the mid-$900,000's. I was thinking of buying a unit that Aminus3 members could stay at when visiting Chicago. :-)

Denise from Duncannon, United States

Definitely more fantastic than Kmart ( if thatis what you were referring to with a blue light special)

25 Feb 2010 10:53am

@Denise: That's the innuendo. But I was referring to the blue light at the top of the building.

Peter from Amsterdam, Netherlands

I remember that you and I were standing in front of this building, last May, and that they had very expensive apartments on offer. Just saw on their website that the prices dropped enormously.

BTW its a nice view from the park, and that blue light is like a "Pharos" in the sea of the city.

25 Feb 2010 11:31am

@Peter: You'll soon see the building we were standing "inside of" last May. :-)

theys from Charleroi, Belgium

Very beautiful realization, beautiful image processing, good day with you.

25 Feb 2010 12:13pm

Tamara from Aarschot, Belgium

Very nice colors and tones ! Thanks for your explanation also, it's always interesting to know what we're looking at :) Great job !

25 Feb 2010 12:33pm

khadi from New Delhi, India

Fantastic image. Perfectly exposed as always

25 Feb 2010 4:25pm

Steve Rice from Olympia, United States

The warm colors in this beautiful scene are wonderful. An excellent image.

25 Feb 2010 4:38pm

Ralph Jones from Detroit, United States

Makes me want to come hang out, it's been a while.

25 Feb 2010 4:51pm

@Ralph Jones: Spring will soon be sprung....sometime in June. :-)

Self-Indulgence from Chicagoland, United States

The hive or pyramid at the top is what really makes this building stand out. I remember that detail from being a child and to see it when I am older connects that time to this. Your night time photography by the way even given the snow is very warm and welcoming. The lights almost in the trees.. the sky is even warm.

25 Feb 2010 5:14pm

MARIANA from Waterloo, Canada

Cool night one . Super colors !

25 Feb 2010 6:20pm

MadScientist from Düsseldorf, Germany

Great view, perfect exposure. Super shot!

25 Feb 2010 6:46pm

Michael Rawluk from Williams Lake, BC, Canada

That blue really pops out. Excellent.

25 Feb 2010 7:06pm

john4jack from Corvallis, Oregon, United States

Wonderful light.

25 Feb 2010 8:22pm

Alun from cheshire, United Kingdom

Really love the colour, nice one

25 Feb 2010 9:25pm

Elisa from Massachusetts, United States

beautiful light!! excellent picture!

26 Feb 2010 1:19am

Viewfinder from Bradenton, FL, United States

I like the intense night light colors.

26 Feb 2010 3:38am

Céline from New York City, United States

I love this city ! Your pictures make me miss it !

26 Feb 2010 3:49am

Charles Dastodd from Chicago, United States

absolutely gorgeous!!!

1 Mar 2010 12:29am

5 seconds
ISO 100
150 mm


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