Regarded as one of the tallest buildings all over the world, many people are interested to find out the reason for the construction of the Sears Tower, which started from 1970 and lasted until 1973. Comprised of 108 floors, it is situated at 233 S. Wacker Drive within Chicago in Illinois. After its construction, it surpassed the World Trade Center as the world’s tallest building starting from 1974 to 1998. Here is a quick look back at history to find the reason behind the construction of this massive commercial structure.
The Reason for Constructing the Sears Tower
Why was the Sears Tower Made? In 1969, Sears, Roebuck & Co. decided to consolidate all its employees within the Chicago area. In order to do this, it sought the services of Skidmore, Owings and Merrill to create a special architectural design for a massive office building. During that time, this company was one of the most influential and biggest retailers worldwide, featuring a total 350,000 employees within that area. Part of the plan was to accommodate growth in the future, which eventually led to the idea of making one of the tallest building structures worldwide.
Some time in February 1982, television antennas were added to the structure. It improved the height of the structure to an astonishing 1,707 feet. In June 2000, an extensive to one of its antennas took place. It improved the height of the building to 1,730 feet. The purpose of this move was to improve television network reception particularly that of WMAQ-TV, which is a local brand of National Broadcasting Co. After some time, Sears experienced problems competing against other topnotch retailers. Further developments ensued. The company slowly moved out its employees as well as its offices.
Other Interesting Information and Developments
The Sears Tower changed owners several times. For instance, AEW Capital Management bought the building in 1994. In 1995, Sears vacated the building entirely and then moved on to Hoffman Estates in Illinois. Then, TrizecHahn Corp. purchased the building in 1997, which it surrendered later on to MetLife. Led by American Landmark Properties, a group of investors purchased the building in 2004.
Because the structure is too tall, lightning strikes are bound to happen a lot. Every year, its antennas are hit by lightning for about 650 times or more. The building has restrooms located on the 103rd floor, which are 1,353 high. All throughout the western hemisphere, these restrooms are second highest, with Shanghai World Financial Center restrooms in China leading the list.