The Bank of America Center in Houston

Photo of The Bank of America Center in Houston, Texas
Photograph © Wayne Lorentz/Artefaqs Corporation
Photo of The Bank of America Center in Houston, Texas
Photograph © Wayne Lorentz/Artefaqs Corporation
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Photo of The Bank of America Center in Houston, Texas
Photograph © Wayne Lorentz/Artefaqs Corporation
Photo of The Bank of America Center in Houston, Texas
Photograph © Wayne Lorentz/Artefaqs Corporation
Photo of The Bank of America Center in Houston, Texas
Photograph © Wayne Lorentz/Artefaqs Corporation

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The Bank of America Center
Formerly:NationsBank Center
Formerly:RepublicBank Center

700 Louisiana Street, Houston, Texas, Downtown 77002
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Text by Wayne Lorentz

An example of what happens when you crossbreed skyscrapers with old homes. The gables were inspired by the canal houses of The Netherlands, and give the building an instantly-recognizable appearance. The first section is 21-stories tall, while the whole building reaches a height of 56-stories. The building also sets itself apart from the other buildings in the skyline which are blue, black, and white. Bank of America Center is dark pink in appearance, being clad in red Swedish granite. Attached to the tower is a similarly-gabled square building referred to as the "banking hall." The Bank of America Center actually envelopes the old two-story Western Union building inside this hall. The old building was not razed because of the electrical connections it houses. That's why the second floor of the building is so far from street level. From the air you can get a better sense of how the setbacks are laid out, and really appreciate its unique shape. With the exception of the Chase Bank building (not to be confused with Chase Tower, or Chase Plaza, not pictured, or any of the two or three dozen other Chase buildings in the city) this is Houston's only attempt at a classic 1920's-style skyscraper. It is not easily recognizable as such because it has thrown off the shackles that bind such buildings in New York and Chicago in order to be very very modern, and match the rest of the city. Houston has a very new skyline compared to others in the United States. It only began experimenting with true skyscrapers in the 1970's and 1980's -- fifty years later than the great architectural capitals of the world. This building succeeds in taking something from the outside world and bending it to meet local sensibilities, which is a recurring theme not only in Houston, but in the whole of Texas. The skyscraper has changed names three times since completion. Originally RepublicBank Center, then NationsBank Center and now Bank of America Center. Computer gaming enthusiasts will recognize this building as one of the rewards available in the game SimCity 3000.

Quick Facts
Notes
    >June, 2001 - During a flood caused by tropical storm Allison, the Bank of America Center's parking garage fills with 80,000,000 gallons of water. A woman trying to move her car to a safer location drowns when the elevator heading to the garage fills with water.
    > April 9, 2007 - The Houston Business Journal reports this building is being sold by Hines.
    > August 24, 2007 - The building is sold to Novati Group for an undisclosed amount of money believed to be between $176 million and $370 million.
Forum Discussions Talk about this building with other architecture enthusiasts
Rate This Skyscraper
method='post' action='/Building.php?ID=523#Rate'>Current rating:50% 90%  name='Rating' id='Rating' value='Praise' class='Plain'> name='Rating' id='Rating' value='Raze' class='Plain'>
Your Thoughts

There are nine comments.

  Could the new owners please upgrade the lighting at each peak of the roof line? Several lights need to be brighter and some replaced altogether. The building would look amazing discreetly lit up from below to place a glow on the entire structure.

david delaunay - Saturday, March 15th, 2014 @ 7:46pm  

  This building really brings back memories. As a Houstonian, I am proud to say at this is by a the most beautiful building in Houston.

Max - Sunday, February 9th, 2014 @ 12:03pm  

   My second favorite landmark building after Transco Tower,which was in my opinion Houston's first attempt at "Classic New City Skyscraper" architecture. This impressive welcome to visitors arriving to the impressive downtown skyline ould bnfit greatly by better "up" lighting at the top ofit's three sections

David DeLaunay - Sunday, January 26th, 2014 @ 11:00pm  

  One of the defining structures of Houston. A true treasure.

Wayne - Tuesday, October 9th, 2007 @ 12:38am  

  The photos are lovely. Having lived in Houston, I can tell you this building--resonates--It is simply beautiful in person.

Michael - Saturday, March 31st, 2007 @ 11:31pm  

  its seemslike touching the sky..

raju kr. kar - Saturday, March 24th, 2007 @ 4:21am  

  The most impressive building in the complex.I would have been so proud to have been associated in its design and construction, especially its design.

Dr.S.G.McConnell - Thursday, December 28th, 2006 @ 7:24pm  

  This is my favorite building in Texas. It is an absolutely stunning piece of architecture. Houston has the most interesting skyscrapers in Texas anyway and this ones tops them all.

David Woods - Saturday, April 8th, 2006 @ 7:48pm  

  I love this building--my favorite in Houston. In my opinion it is one of the most beautiful skyscrapers in the world.

bkjones98 - Friday, March 31st, 2006 @ 12:49pm  

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