9. The American Radiator Building Was Based off of a Design Entry for Chicago’s Tribune Tower
In 1922, the Chicago Tribune hosted an international design competition for its new headquarters, offering $50,000 in prize money for the best entry. Of the 260 submissions received, Howells’ and Hood’s neo-Gothic design was selected as the winner, although many perceived the second-place design, by Finnish architect Eliel Saarinen, to be the best.
Following his win, Hood became “instantly famous,” and a simple job designing radiator covers for the American Radiator Company eventually turned into a larger commission for its eponymous showroom and office building. Saarinen’s design, however, left a lasting impact — lending itself to emulation over the years. In fact, the American Radiator Building’s structural form is based off his unbuilt entry, and Hood himself has even acknowledged Sarrinen’s influence on its design, naming him among the architects who gave his team a “lift over many rough places.”