The Board of Trade Building

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The Chicago Board of Trade Building is situated on address: 141 West Jackson Boulevard, Chicago, Illinois, in the centre of Chicago’s busy Loop commercial neighbourhood. It belongs to the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT), the world’s oldest futures and options exchange, founded in 1848 to create a centralized trading market for grain and other agricultural products.

CBOT has been situated in the centre of Chicago since 1885, in a building designed by architect W. W. Boyington. By 1925, neighboring buildings were more impressive and provided more interior space; so new building was started to be build in 1927 by the firm of Holabird & Roche. It was finished three years later by the successor firm of Holabird & Root. They design the Chicago Board of Trade building in Art Deco style (an attempt to express the modern, streamlined world by the use of cubic forms, geometric ornament, and sleek surface materials).

The building is 605 feet (184 metres) tall and it is built of limestone-clad. There is a series of setbacks culminating in a pyramidal roof topped by 31 foot (9.5 metres) tall aluminum statue of the goddess Ceres (the Roman goddess of agriculture) that is there in reference to the exchange's heritage as a commodity market. The interesting thing about the statue is the fact, that it is faceless. Its designer, John Storrs, believed that Chicago Board of Trade building, 45 storey tall, would be the tallest structure nearby, so nobody would be able to see the sculpture’s face anyway.

The Chicago Board of Trade building is now a mix of architectural history and modern telecommunications infrastructure and service. On May 4, 1977 the Chicago Board of Trade Building was designated a Chicago Landmark. In 1980, the building was expanded by Murphy and Jahn with a 24 story building.
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