The Skyscraper Museum
The Skyscraper Museum


Located in New York City, the world's first and foremost vertical metropolis, The Skyscraper Museum celebrates the City's rich architectural heritage and examines the historical forces and individuals that have shaped its successive skylines. Through exhibitions, programs and publications, the Museum explores tall buildings as objects of design, products of technology, sites of construction, investments in real estate, and places of work and residence. For a description of the gallery and for photos of the space, please visit our Photo Slideshows page.

The Skyscraper Museum is located in lower Manhattan's Battery Park City at 39 Battery Place. Museum hours are 12-6 PM, Wednesday-Sunday.

General admission is $5, $2.50 for students and seniors. Click here for directions to the Museum. All galleries and facilities are wheelchair accessible.



CURRENT EXHIBITION



The last decade of the twentieth century in New York City was not a simple time. The end of one millennium – a thousand-year marker – and the beginning of the 2000s prompted both anxiety and optimism, reflecting on what to hold onto from the past and how to move into the future.

No place in mid-1990s was more conflicted about these prospects or more ripe for reinvention than lower Manhattan, especially the historic Financial District. Wall Street was losing banks to mergers and relocations. Grand skyscrapers of the 1910s and ‘20s were becoming technologically obsolete and sliding down market. The lasting effect of the 1987 stock market crash, followed by the savings-and-loan scandals, caused a real estate recession that hit Downtown harder than other districts. Vacancy rates for office buildings topped 28 percent. New thinking and policies were necessary.

Preservation and reinvention were twin themes of the Downtown discussion. Landmarking and converting older office buildings to residential and other uses were strategies of economic development. Celebrating the district’s rich history and creating a culture for tourism was another initiative, led by Heritage Trails New York. Twenty years ago, the nascent Skyscraper Museum used the real estate recession to find free space for its first pop-up exhibitions in grand vacant banking halls at 44 Wall Street and at 14 Wall. MILLENNIUM revisits this recent history of lower Manhattan in the years just before Downtown’s identity was recast as Ground Zero.



Skyscraper Museum sign on 14 Wall Street at the corner of Broad Street, home to a temporary exhibit 1999.

MILLENNIUM is presented with the generous support of the J.M. Kaplan Fund.

View the PRESS RELEASE






UPCOMING PROGRAMS

Tuesday, December 5, 2017 6:30-8:00 pm

Barbara Mensch Book Talk

South Street

Columbia University Press, 2007

South Street is a remarkable visual essay, collecting Barbara Mensch’s photographs of the lost world of Fulton Fish Market from 1979-1983. With lively commentary, Mensch documents the tight knit world of fishmongers and the market, which was, in the words of Phillip Lopate, a “last vestige of historic Gotham.” Join us as Barbara Mensch discusses her work, which includes numerous photographs that feature prominently in the Museum’s current exhibition.

Barbara Mensch has lived in the Seaport area since 1979. She holds a BFA degree from Hunter College. Her work has been featured in numerous solo exhibitions and countless group exhibitions, as well as in museums including MoMA and the Brooklyn Museum.

Reservations are required, and priority is given to Members and Corporate Member firms and their employees.
All guests MUST RSVP to programs@skyscraper.org to assure admittance to the event. Not a member? Become a Museum member today!

Wednesday, November 29, 2017 3:00 pm

Curator's Tour


Skyscraper Museum Director and curator Carol Willis will lead a tour of the museum's new exhibition MILLENNIUM, Lower Manhattan in the 1990s.

Curators tours are free with admission. No RSVP required.






Click here for more upcoming programs.




UPCOMING FAMILY PROGRAMS

SKY BOYS
November 18, 2017
10:30-11:45 AM
Children are invited to listen to a story about building the Empire State Building from the award-winning book Sky Boys by Deborah Hopkinson and James Ransome. After the reading, kids will design their very own skyscraper. All Ages.




Click here for more upcoming Family Programs



skyscrapers, One57, 111 West 57th Street, 432 Park Avenue, 520 Park Avenue, Central Park Tower, 220 Central Park South, 53W53rd, 100 E 53rd Street, Sky House, 45 E 22nd Street, One Madison, 35 Hudson Yards, 56 Leonard, 30 Park Place, 111 Murray Street, 125 Greenwich Street, 50 West Street, 9 DeKalb, new york architecture, nyc skyscrapers, luxury residential, residential skyscraper, new york's super-slenders, slender skyscrapers

​The Skyscraper Museum has created a new web project that explains an emerging form in skyscraper history that has evolved in New York over the past decade:  the super-slender, ultra luxury residential tower. These pencil-thin periscopes — all 50 to 90+ stories — use a development and design strategy of slenderness to pile their city-regulated maximum square feet of floor area (FAR) as high in the sky to as possible to create luxury apartments defined by spectacular views.

Click here to view NEW YORK'S SUPER-SLENDERS







A 3-D CBD: How the 1916 Zoning Law
Shaped Manhattan's Central Business Districts


skyscrapers, One57, 111 West 57th Street, 432 Park Avenue, 520 Park Avenue, Central Park Tower, 220 Central Park South, 53W53rd, 100 E 53rd Street, Sky House, 45 E 22nd Street, One Madison, 35 Hudson Yards, 56 Leonard, 30 Park Place, 111 Murray Street, 125 Greenwich Street, 50 West Street, 9 DeKalb, new york architecture, nyc skyscrapers, luxury residential, residential skyscraper, new york's super-slenders, slender skyscrapers

1939-40 NYC Department of Finance tax lot photographs of the Garment District, showing the distinctive setbacks created by the 1916 zoning law. From left to right: 345-351 W. 35th Street; 347-351 W. 36th Street; 247-255 W. 38th Street.



This essay, published online on July 25, 2016, to mark the precise centennial of the passage of the New York City Zoning Resolution on July 25th, 1916, is a revised and updated version of a 1991 conference paper and subsequent chapter of a 1993 book, Planning and Zoning New York City: Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow. Organized by the New York City Department of City Planning, the conference celebrated the 75th anniversary of the zoning law with a symposium on the history and future of planning in New York City. Read the final report here

Click here to read the essay



HILARY BALLON

On June 16, 2017, we lost a dear friend and extraordinary colleague,
Hilary Ballon. Please click here for a remembrance.




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The Museum is a participating member of the Downtown Culture Pass.