A Path to Steam
The middle building in the picture.
The Equitable Building is a 38-story office building in New York City, located at 120 Broadway between Pine and Cedar Streets in the Financial District of Lower Manhattan. A landmark engineering achievement as a skyscraper, it was designed by Ernest R. Graham – the successor to D. H. Burnham & Company – with Peirce Anderson as the architect-in-charge, when it was the largest office building in the world in square-footage: on a plot of just less than an acre, the building had 1.2 million square feet of floor space. Built to be the headquarters of the Equitable Life Insurance Company, the controversy surrounding its construction without setbacks which allowed sunlight to reach the ground contributed to the adoption of the first modern building and zoning restrictions on vertical structures in Manhattan.