LeVeque Tower - Columbus, Ohio
Posted by: Mr. 0
N 39° 57.733 W 083° 00.137
17S E 328985 N 4425483
Quick Description: Standing 555'6", the LeVeque Tower is located at 50 W Broad St. in downtown Columbus, Ohio
Location: Ohio, United States
Date Posted: 5/12/2007 7:09:21 PM
Waymark Code: WM1HKA
Construction on the LeVeque Tower was completed in 1927, and was Columbus' first skyscraper. Originally called the American Insurance Union Citadel, it was designed by architect C. Howard Crane.
While in the planning phases, the building was only supposed to be 480 feet tall, however the American Insurance Union decided to increase the height to 555 feet 6 inches, or 1/2 a foot taller than the Washington Monument, to generate publicity for the building. At the time of its completion it was the tallest building between New York and Chicago, and reigned as Columbus' tallest building until the Rhodes State Office Tower was built in 1977.
Because of the cost of the building and the Great Depression, the American Insurance Union went bankrupt, and sold the tower. It was purchased in 1945 by John Lincoln and Leslie L. LeVeque. The people holding policies with the American Insurance Union never received the full amount they were owed. The building has since changed hands a couple of times, however it still remains in use mostly as office space. The street level houses the Columbus Palace Theater which hosts Broadway musicals, plays, and other theater events. The Palace Theater is modeled after France's Palais de Versailles.
The LeVeque Tower is a steel structure overlaid with glazed terra-cotta tiles which have an "oak-bark" texture. It originally had more sculptures, but much of it was removed because they began to crumble and fall into the street below. The removed items included four 18 foot eagles, and four 20 foot statues of Colossus. The Colossus statues were removed so Mr. LeVeque could have a better view from his office windows. The empty spaces were replaced by lights. Normally the building is lit in white, however for holidays and special occasions it is lit differently. During Christmas it is lit in red and green, St. Patricks Day brings out all green lights, in October it is lit Pink for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. For a long time after the September 11th attack it was lit in Red, White and Blue, as it is on and around Independence Day. As of the time of this writing the building is being lit in maroon and orange in remembrance of the shooting at Virginia Tech.