John Hancock Tower - view from bottom

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John Hancock Tower - view from bottom ( 480x640 )
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John Hancock Toner is located on 200 Clarendon Street, Boston. In Boston there are actually three buildings known as “John Hancock Building” because all of them have been built by John Hancock Insurance. The most notable of them is 60-storey sleek glass skyscraper. It is also known by people of Boston as “New: Hancock Tower but its official name is Hancock Place.

The high of John Hancock tower is 790 feet (241 metres). It is still the tallest building in New England, the 43rd tallest building in the United States, and the 112th tallest building in the world.

The skyscraper was designed by I. M. Pei, Henry N. Cobb and Freed. The main designing principle became minimalism. Large glass panels were used. They are very reflecting and tinted slightly blue. The building has no spandrels panels and just a few mullions. The modern character was reached by using a parallelogram shape for the tower floor plan, which makes the corners of the building very sharp. Shorter sides of parallelogram have a deep vertical notch.

John Hancock tower was completed in 1976. However it was planned for year 1971. Cobb was awarded the National Honor Award for the building, although its cost rose from 75 million dollars to 175.

Besides the problems with the finishing and overdrawing, the building has been connected with some more troubles since the very beginning. During the excavation temporary steel retaining wall were erected to create a void to build on. However these bended and utility lines, the sidewalk pavement, and nearby buildings—even the historic Trinity Church next door were damaged. Soon after the building was completed, windowpanes began detaching from the building and falling to the street below. These were temporarily replaced with plywood. All the glass panels were replaced in 1973 by a different heat-treated variety. Another problem was that the upper part of the John Hancock Tower was swaying. It was stabilized by a device called a tuned mass damper installed on the 58th floor.

The main tenants of the skyscraper were John Hancock companies, but since 2004 some offices have been relocated. There is an observatory at the top. It was closed after September 11, 2001 but again reopened in 2006.
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