10. A Plane Once Crashed into the Empire State Building

Bomber crashes into Empire State Building
Bomber Crashed into Empire State Building, July 28, 1945. Image via Wikimedia Commons.

On a foggy morning in July 1945, a pilot flying lower than usual to regain visibility dodged most of the New York City skyline but failed to swerve around the 79th floor of the Empire State Building. The pilot didn’t only create a hole 18 feet wide and 20 feet high – because the fuel tank exploded, flames hurdled through the stairs and the hallways down to the 75th floor killing 14 and injuring 26. Luckily, the building was repairable but it did cost $1 million. Read about 5 more architectural accidents in NYC.

Another note relevant to to the current pandemic. The Empire State Building was the first observatory to reopen in New York City, in part due to the air filtration system that was built into the last renovation. Merv 13 filters and AtmosAir air purifying solutions which filters out the air on a rapid schedule.

Empire State Building lobby and model

Another cool thing to look for besides the beautiful views from the observatories: in the lobby of the Empire State Building, a scale model shows “every last detail of the building,” says Siobhan, including the framing around all 6500 windows in the building, guests shown on the observatories, the green terraces that tenants have access to, and more.. Siobhan tells us that the model was being glued at 6:30 AM the morning that the new lobby and the new museum was opened to the public in July 2019 and that “it all came down to the model and getting it open.”

We’re also a big fan of the King Kong windows!

King Kong windows in Empire State Building

Next, check out the Secrets of the Chrysler Building.