5. Cooper Union owns the land below the Chrysler Building

NYC skyline at sunrise

Cooper Union has owned the land the Chysler Building sits on since 1902. As a result, not a single dollar in taxes from the Chrysler Building has ever gone to New York City. The land is an endowment for the college. Instead of paying the state, Chrysler Building owners pay Cooper Union, which is tax-exempt.

The land the Chrysler Building sits on has another hidden fact: it is slanted. The property existed before the 1811 grid was created, resulting in the slant that the Chrysler Building sits on today. Before the building was erected, the property ran against the old Boston Post Road.