Photographer's Note

Sears Tower(Chicago Tower) stands tall, over 1700ft (~442m),aloft, overlooking the west side of Chicago's downtown Loop. Clad in bronze-tinted glass and stainless aluminum, rising with determination yet elegance from the depths of its grand foundations to the tips of its massive spires, luring tourists in daze, housing a workforce of thousands, Sears Tower represents an era in Chicago of optimism and opportunity that will not be forgotten.

Originally designed in the late 60's by Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill for Chicago-based Sears Roebuck and Company, Sears Tower was topped out in May 3, 1973 -- 31 years ago, with communications towers extended and an atrium added by SOM in the early eighties, public and Skydeck lobbies and elevators renovated by DeStefano + Assoc in the early 90s.

Of course, Sears itself has since moved to a more human-scale suburban setting leaving the tower partly vacant on several occasions due to a downtown real estate depression. Today, however, downtown property markets are thriving; likewise Sears Tower has (again) become one of Chicago's most prestigious buildings, recently acquired from AEW Capital Management by TrizecHahn, a REIT (real estate investment trust) firm. In fact, in honor of Sears Tower's principle structural engineer, an adjacent street was, following a ceremony, appropriately dedicated "Fazlur R. Kahn Way" as of five years ago.

To meet the growing demands of the digital age, Sears Tower was upgraded March 8 of 2000 with four combination antennas, each 29.4ft, 2890lb mounted on 80ft towers at the four corners of the roof. An Erickson S-64F Aircrane was used to lift the load from the top of the parking garage skyward about one quarter mile. Four city blocks were closed off during the massive operation. However, the new addition will now make Chicago area high-definition digital television (HDTV) capable.
(Pic was shot, when the sky was overcast, making the sky look dull)

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