United Shoe Machinery Building

Parker Thomas, and Rice, 1928-1930 National Register of Historic Places, Boston Landmark

The house in which Trinity Church rector Phillips Brooks was born stood on this land before this large trapezoidal art deco building was built. It was the first art deco skyscraper in Boston and influenced designs of subsequent buildings in both Boston and New York City. Sitting on a base of limestone and black granite, the complex mass is clad in brick, stone, and metal. The various vertical blocks step back progressively towards a central tower capped by a truncated pyramid of tile. Boston's height-restriction law was revised in 1928 to allow taller buildings, provided they were stepped back in this fashion to allow more sun to reach street level. The elaborate art deco metalwork still survives in the lobby.

Image: Biruitorul - Own work, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=4514167