Sunday, March 18, 2007

Poor Marcel Breuer.

The March 2007 Metropolis Magazine article "Farewell Marcel" suggests the likely loss of Marcel Breuer's Cleveland Trust Tower in downtown Cleveland. The Cleveland tower's days "may be numbered" says Steve Rugare of the Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative. "Part of the problem," author Kelli Kavanaugh writes, "is that while Breuer is hailed as a master, the public has not always had such a warm relationship with his work."

Thankfully, the article describes the difference in opinion of commissioners Tim Hagan and Peter Lawson Jones for the ability of the existing building to become 'energy efficient' and 'green.' Peter Lawson Jones, "the only one of the commissioners still open to saving the structure, doesn't buy [that the tower doesn't meet the requirements of green architecture]." He argues that "preservation is inherently more sustainable than demolition and that retrofits could enhance its efficiency."

While the merits of its design could be challenged (and it seems as though the local architecture community is generally apathetic towards its significance), the environmental and economical advantages of saving the structure will be the points at which the community could best rally around to challenge the decision of two out of three commissioners.

Click here for tower images at


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