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Transamerica Pyramid

Transamerica Pyramid Transamerica Pyramid Photo by Lucius Kwok via Flickr

You may be surprised to know this, but when the design for the Transamerica Pyramid was unveiled in 1969 swathes of residents were opposed to the design. They couldn't see how such a modern building would be able to fit into the quaint-looking city of San Francisco. The architects proceeded with their plans regardless, and it seems if they may have been right too. The Transamerica Pyramid has become an icon of San Francisco and people from all over the world swamp to the city to gaze at this wonderful monument.

The design for the Transamerica Pyramid was meant to be 'forward-thinking'. It was claimed that this was the ideal shape for a skyscraper due to its ability to still allow light onto the streets that rest below it. However, the main reason for the design of the Pyramid was to get around some rather strict planning laws. At the time of its inceptions there were building laws in place which meant that building's surface space needed to correlate with its shape. If it didn't do this then the building would be far smaller than the one we know today.

Construction of the Transamerica Pyramid was completed in 1972 to great critical acclaim. Today it stands at a whopping 260 meters in height and towers over San Francisco which means it can be spotted from a great distance. The spire at the top measures 64 meters in height and is coated with aluminium panels. The stunning white colour on the exterior of the building is down to crushed quartz which has been spread across the outside of the building. You may be surprised to know however that the majority of the floor space in the pyramid is unusable due to the addition of elevators and emergency escapes, hence why this design isn't used more often.

When you first encounter the Transamerica Pyramid you will be in awe at just how much it sparkles in the sunlight. At night you will be dumbfounded by the beautiful lights that adorn the outside of the building. This is without a doubt a 'must visit.

Location/Map: Montgomery St, San Francisco, CA 94111

Website: Transamerica Pyramid