THE STORY OF THE ROCKEFELLER CENTRE
Physician David Hosack purchased twenty acres of rural land from New York City in 1801 for $5,000 and opened the country’s first botanical garden ~ the Elgin Botanic Garden. The property was given to Columbia College in 1814, and the gardens were abandoned. In the 1920s, it became the site of Rockefeller Center.Construction of Rockefeller Center started in 1931, and the first buildings opened in 1933. The core of the complex was completed by 1939. … Described as one of the greatest projects of the Great Depression era, Rockefeller Center was declared a New York City landmark in 1985 and a National Historic Landmark in 1987.
Urban planner Le Corbusier expressed that Rockefeller Center was “rational, logically conceived, biologically normal, and harmonious”…although Rockefeller Center would inevitably be disorganized in its earliest years, it would eventually adhere to a certain “order”,and praised the complex for being a paragon of “noble” and “efficient” construction.
Novelist Gertrude Stein said in 1935, “The view of Rockefeller Center from Fifth Avenue is the most beautiful thing I have ever seen.”