Things to know
Our New York live cam broadcasting from Manhattan’s largest rooftop bar presents a jaw-dropping 180° view of the city skyline, but especially of the legendary Empire State Building! Completed in 1931, this Art Deco skyscraper - rising on the grounds of the original Waldorf Astoria Hotel - was inaugurated as the world’s tallest building.Curiously, in the 1920s the economic boom translated into a head to head “competition” between constructors racing to erect the world’s tallest building. The Empire State Building, the Chrysler (visible on the right) and the neo-gothic 40 Wall Street all contended for the title. Designs were constantly updated, more and more floors added. 40 Wall Street held the title from late April 1930 to May 27th 1930 counting 927 feet. This short-lived record was due to the inauguration of the Chrysler Building that measured 1,046 feet, including a secretly constructed 125 feet steel spire mounted on the tower’s dome. At the very end, the Empire bested both, surpassing the Chrysler by circa 400 feet.Construction began on May 1st 1930, the process involved as many as 3,400 workers on a day to day basis and an astounding 57,000 tons of steel for the skeleton. The King of Steel was completed in record time (20 months) and under budget, costing a total of $40,984,900! Today the Empire State Building, measuring 1,454 feet (including the antenna added in 1950), is the 31st tallest building in the world (the 4th in NY), it’s visited by over 3.5 million people every year and is one of the 43 New York skyscrapers with a dedicated zip code! Crazy, huh? The two observatories on the 86th and 102nd floor offer – needless to say - spectacular views of the city!Tune into our New York live webcam and watch as New Yorkers finish up their day in front of the 102-story landmark! Can you recognize any other skyscrapers? Fun factsSo many interesting facts surround the architectural icon that is the Empire State Building. Did you know that the skyscraper rose to stardom with the 1933 “King Kong” movie? On the occasion of the film’s 50th anniversary, a giant 84-foot inflatable ape was installed on what is called the Empire’s “mooring mast”. Quite a few urban myths revolve around this 200-foot tower as well, the mooring mast was believed to have been added to allow the docking of lighter-than-air dirigibles (aka blimps) booming in the first decades of the 20th century. The docking station, however, never welcomed any passengers nor Zeppelins for that matter, the strong and hazardous winds blowing at the height of the mast render even the thought unpractible. Many believe, in fact, that the Empire State Building was never meant to be an airport for dirigibles, but that the docking station was a “mere” ploy designed to add height and conquer the title of “World’s Tallest Building”. Another incredible event occurred in 1945, when a heavy fog caused the crash of an army B-25 bomber into the tower’s 79th floor claiming the life of 14 people. Lastly, 1994 marks the first ever Empire State Building Valentine’s day wedding contest event, every year since, hundreds of couples submit their love story for a chance to win a dream wedding atop the skyscraper!