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Independence Day Building

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posted by alias Clint Midwestwood on Wednesday 14th of November 2018 02:12:40 PM

We still had a little time to kill after the Hollywood Reservoir, so we did something we've never even considered before. We actually went down and wandered around downtown Los Angeles. I've long had this notion that because Los Angeles as a whole is so decentralized, downtown Los Angeles wasn't really a place. That's not really true, as this is as much a place as any downtown core. Like downtown Chicago, this is where a lot of people in banking and finance work, and I feel like there are a lot of architects down here. There's a jewelers row and offices associated with international commerce and diplomacy. There are lawyers. The high powered law firm of McKenzie, Brackman, Chaney and Kuzak operates out of a building somewhere off to the left. Hundreds of detectives have offices scattered around here. I think Tony Stark has an office building here somewhere. Because I'm me, my main focus was on the big, white, cylindrical building seen toward the center of this image. That's the U.S. Bank Building, which at 1,018-feet-tall comes in as the second tallest building in Los Angeles. Were it in Chicago or New York, it would be either city's fifth tallest building. Which means you'd notice it, no matter where they put it. Originally named Library Tower, this building was completed in 1989, and I tend to think of it as the first structure to make the Los Angeles skyline recognizable. Before this, everything tall was a box. As such, the building tends to stand out in disaster movies, which in the U.S. always feature either Los Angeles or New York. (Chicago's had some recent attention in the Transformers franchise.) I saw this building get nuked with the rest of Los Angeles is a really disturbing dream sequence in Terminator 2. (Needless to say, if disaster movies give you anxiety, don't hit any of these links.) I've seen it destroyed in massive earthquakes in the amazingly scientifically inaccurate 2012 and San Andreas movies. You can just see it getting wiped out for an instant by tornadoes in the also scientifically inaccurate Day After Tomorrow. But most iconic for me is Independence Day, when the building is ground zero for one of three simultaneous alien attacks on the United States. Presumably, similarly iconic structures are being destroyed at roughly the same time in about 20 someodd cities all over the world, but the movie only shows the destruction in Los Angeles, New York, and Washington. As such, I've always referred to this as the Independence Day Building.

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  • Published 05.19.22
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