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Thursday, February 08, 2007

Architects' Poll: Zeros For Cleveland, Columbus

CINCINNATI (TDB) -- The NFL stadium on the Ohio River in Cincinnati named for Paul Brown, the coach who founded the Cleveland Browns and moved on to start the Cincinnati Bengals, has made the list of America's "favorite" architectural sites. And so did an old art-deco railroad station in Cincinnati. But there is nothing on the list from anywhere else in Ohio. Nada.

The American Institute of Architects released its 150 favorite works Wednesday, and the Empire State Building in midtown Manhattan towered over all others. It was built in 1931, long after the White House, which came in No. 2. The news release from the AIA is HERE. The top 10 is chock full of standards -- Golden Gate, Vietnam Vets Memorial, U.S. Capitol. All deserving.

But the surprise is that there is nothing considered of importance in Ohio outside Cincinnati. That means Cleveland's signature structure, the Terminal Tower, does not match a professional football stadium built in the 1990s.

Take a look at the TOWER. Check out the STADIUM. (As a Cincinnatian, the only thing I can see that it has over Cleveland is that the team playing inside Paul Brown is better. But that's about it.)

And, what about I.M. Pei's ROCK HALL. Apparently, a sour note like K.Fed's career.

Perhaps most slighted was the
HOPE MEMORIAL BRIDGE , formerly the Lorain-Carnegie, which is magnificent. Also, the AIA has New York's Brooklyn Bridge on the list, but not the James A. Roebling, which spans the Ohio River and was the model for New York's version. Roebling started his bridge linking Cincinnati and Kentucky on the eve of the Civil War, then had to stop until the fighting ended.

What's the most architecturally interesting building in Ohio? I would vote for the ROEBLING suspension bridge or the Hope Memorial. But I'm not an architect. I would not vote for a football field. The entire AIA list of America's Favorite Architecture is HERE.

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