December 8, 1927
From the Great Men Saying Great Things file…none other than the esteemed Sir Edwin Lutyens, Greatest of British Architects, has asserted that our sky-scrapers will, with certainty, in forty years, tumble. According to Lutyens, the methods employed in structural steel construction of giving the steel only a “coating of paint or one of mud and water” allows our edifices scant protection from atmospheric penetration.
And boy, was he right. Who can forget the terrible collapsings of Berg & Clark’s Gillender Building, or Burnham & Root’s Ashland Block or Masonic Temple, or Flagg’s Singer Building, et al? Damn that atmospheric penetration! (For more on victims of atmospheric penetration, go here.)
Here in Los Angeles of the future, of course, the atmosphere laughs as it burns paint and mud and water right off our tall buildings. But stand tall and proud still, they do!