Thursday, June 20, 2013
Jet age architecture soon to be lost
From the Wall Street Journal:
Advocates for the now-vacant Worldport terminal at Kennedy Airport hope their preservation efforts will gain momentum with the bittersweet designation of the former Pan Am building as one of America's 11 most-endangered historic places.
The annual list, compiled by the National Trust for Historic Preservation and slated for release Wednesday, selects architectural and cultural heritage sites in danger of destruction or damage. The flying-saucer shaped Worldport, long-slated for demolition to make room for more operating space at the airport, was cited for its symbolic jet-age architecture.
Constructed in 1960 by Pan American World Airways, the building was known for its large elliptical roof canopy, measuring 450 by 350 feet, which allowed aircraft to taxi under it, providing protective covering for passengers between the plane and the terminal. It was famously featured as a backdrop for the Beatles as they departed on a Pan Am Boeing BA -1.76% 707 after their 1964 U.S. tour, and epitomized the glamour of jet travel in movies such as "Come Fly With Me" and the 1962 "That Touch of Mink," starring Cary Grant and Doris Day.
Delta Air Lines DAL -1.48% assumed the building and other Pan Am assets when the carrier collapsed in 1991. Renamed Terminal 3, it was in use until May 23, when Delta opened the adjacent $1.4 billion Terminal 4 the next day.