2. Robert Moses’ Many Offices
Robert Moses was designated head of the New York City Parks Department and the Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority in 1933. By its completion in 1936, the Triborough Bridge connected the Bronx, Manhattan, and Queens via Randall’s and Ward’s Island. A year after the bridge’s finalization came the construction of the Robert Moses Building, which went a bit under the radar.
Originally named “The Administration Building,” the Robert Moses Building was constructed by Aymar Enbury II, who worked on many of Moses’ other architectural projects. The building was completed in 1937 and was meant to be used as the center of operations for the bridge. However, it quickly transformed into a major base of operations for the Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority, and its director. The building’s exterior is shown in Motherless Brooklyn as the office of Moses Randall, with the interior scenes shot mostly in the ballroom of the New York Academy of Medicine, with digital backdrops added to make it appear as if it was under the Triborough Bridge.
According to Caro in The Power Broker, Moses also had offices at 80 Centre Street as Chairman of the State Council of Parks, 270 Broadway in the New York State Office Building, an office in Belmont State Park as President of the Long Island State Park Commission, and a “nominal” office at the Arsenal in Central Park, which is still the offices of NYC Parks. Moses also had an office in the Olmsted Building in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park which he used as a temporary office during the 1964-65 World’s Fair where he kept a bed. We also learn in The Power Broker that Moses would sometimes take meetings in his Gracie Terrace apartment, even with the Mayor of New York City, Mayor Lindsay.