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Location DB > United States > New York > Rochester > Midtown Plaza
 Name
Midtown Plaza
 Viewing Options
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 Database Info
created by trent on 8/15/2008 10:48 AM
last modified by trent on 5/17/2016 5:34 PM
 Viewability
Publically Viewable Publically Viewable
This location has been labeled as Demolished, and therefore can be viewed by anyone.
 Overview
 Description
Demolished. Move along, unless you are bfinan0, then this place is crazy easy to get into.
 Basic Information
Type: Building
Status: Demolished
Accessibility: Moderate
Recommendation: worth the trip
 Physical Information
Address
Between E Broad St, S Clinton Ave, E Main St, and Chestnut St.
Rochester, New York
United States
Owner: Hard to tell, ownership constantly changing hands
  • See a map of this location
  •  Hazards
  • asbestos
  • rust
  • air quality
  • I really didn't see any, but you know there has to be some asbestos back in the mech rooms somewhere.
  •  Interesting Features
    Besides run of the mill retail stores as seen in a 'normal' mall, Midtown Plaza also had many other things like a bank, a bus depot, a radio station, a post office, an office tower, and a grocery store.
     Security Measures
  • fences
  • part-time guard
  • 24 hour guard
  • locked gates
  • cameras
  • There are camera's, not sure if they're still active. There is security, not sure of their hours.
  •  Historical Dates
    Built: 1962
    Closed: 2008
     Required Equipment
  • flashlight
  •  Recommended Equipment
    Air filter mask for mechanical areas to be safe
     History
    CREDIT: This was ripped from Wikipedia.org and shortened by myself


    Midtown Plaza (1962–2008) was an indoor shopping mall designed by Vistor Gruen in downtown Rochester, New York, the first urban indoor mall in the United States. The idea for this mall started with discussions between Gilbert J.C. McCurdy, owner of the McCurdy's department stores and Maurice F. Forman, owner of the B. Forman Co. department stores. At that time strip plazas were growing in popularity. Though both owners had opened branch stores they were concerned about Downtown Rochester's viability and came up with the idea of an indoor shopping center.

    Gruen was at the height of his influence when Midtown was completed and the project attracted international attention. City officials and planners from around the globe came to see Gruen's solution to the mid-century urban crisis. Midtown won several design awards.

    Gruen described the aerial view of Rochester as a giant parking lot with a few buildings to inconvenience traffic flow. His intention was to create a pedestrian friendly town square for Rochester, NY, a medium sized city near the mouth of the Genesee River. He incorporated art, benches, fountains, a four hundred seat auditorium and a sidewalk cafe into his plans hoping to encourage the sort of social intermingling that he saw as the enriching essence of urban life.

    Later in life Gruen dismissed the strictly commercial suburban malls as "those bastard developments" but continued to hold Midtown in high regard. It is probably the project that most closely followed his plan and shared his civic vision. In addition to the shopping center, the Plaza also includes a skyscraper office building.

    Midtown Plaza was economically vibrant into the early 1980s when suburban shopping malls opened outside of the city. Surrounded by high pockets of poverty, Midtown struggled to keep tenants. Midtown's struggles increased in the mid-1990s when the mall's two anchors, McCurdy's and Forman's, closed in 1994. Their closing was quickly followed by the closing of the Midtown branch of Wegmans Food Markets, a regional high end grocery chain. Once considered the sign of a new urbanism, the Plaza was placed on the list of 2002 Empire Zones.

    During its last years, the mall's tenants included Peebles department store, Radio Shack, Payless Shoes, some downscale clothing stores, a dollar store, two jewelry stores, a gift shop and a US post office. Located directly underneath Midtown Plaza is a three level, 1,843 space parking garage.

     Media Coverage
    Closing of Midtown: http://www.democra...?AID=2008807260321
    Santa's Chair: http://www.democra...08150367/1002/NEWS
     Future Plans
    It was announced on October 16, 2007 that Midtown Plaza will be knocked down to make way for the new PAETEC headquarters via eminent domain. The PAETEC complex will include two office buildings, one five-story building with some offices and PAETEC employee recreation and daycare facilities, and a tall (30+ story) office tower for up to 1500 company employees with a public observation deck on its highest floor. PAETEC chief executive Arunas Chesonis says the central PAETEC office tower will be Rochester's tallest office building, exceeding the 443 foot height of the nearby Xerox Building, when completed late in 2011.

    PAETEC was soon purchased by Windstream. Plans for the great new tall tower were completely and utterly scrapped. There is now a Windstream office on one floor of a three story building originally where the tower was to stand. Goals were too ambitious.

    On July 29, 2008 Midtown Plaza closed its doors to the public for the last time.

    As of 7/16/2009, the plaza is still standing and undergoing asbestos removal. Plans on this project are shaky. There was plans for a performing arts center, but that might be removed. Also the keeping the Greyhound bus depot there was controversial. Due to this, the project is in peril of losing federal stimulus money. If that happens, the project may be halted and have to start all over again with a new design.

    As of 5/1/2013, the remaining tower is beginning to be rehabilitated into shops, offices, and apartments. Construction equipment has been present for a while, but a new construction elevator and mobile office were recently installed. Everything but the tower has been redeveloped or demolished with the addition of new roadways and plaza.

    5/24/2014 - Ground breaking on the reconstruction of the tower.

    12/2015 - Tower is fully enclosed. Apartments open for tours. First and second floor retail is shaping up. I really never thought this development be a reality.
     Stories
    It was an Interesting Day
    Fri, Aug 15th, 2008
    posted by trent


    Add your own story
     Photo Galleries
    Click to view gallery
    Corridors, A Bank, Shoe Store, and more
    Fri, Aug 15th, 2008
    posted by trent
    22 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    Mechanical Rooms, pipes, and motors
    Sat, Aug 16th, 2008
    posted by trent
    17 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    Weird Stuff and Swankey Shops
    Sun, Aug 17th, 2008
    posted by trent
    16 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    Film Shots
    Mon, Aug 18th, 2008
    posted by trent
    5 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    Tower Skeleton (2014)
    Mon, Feb 24th, 2014
    posted by puddlejumper12
    10 pictures
     


    Add your own photos

    Mark all galleries as Seen
     Web Links
    Midtown Monorail: http://www.monorai...tMspages/Roch.html
    Vintage Clock of Nations: http://www.vsw.org...f_Nations_1962.jpg
    New Development
    www.thetoweratmidtown.com
     Contribute

    Edit this Location
     Moderator Rating
    The moderator rating is a neutral rating of the content quality, photography, and coolness of this location.

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     Validation
    This location's validation is current. It was last validated by Steed on 5/27/2016 9:49 AM.

     Latest Changes
  • on May 27 16 at 9:49, Steed validated this location
  • on May 17 16 at 17:34, trent changed the following: Status, Description
  • on Jan 9 16 at 15:56, Explorer Zero validated this location
  • on Dec 19 15 at 17:42, puddlejumper12 changed the following: Future Plans
  • on May 26 14 at 8:21, Steed validated this location
  • on May 24 14 at 16:56, puddlejumper12 changed the following: Future Plans, Description, Web Links
  • on May 16 14 at 16:22, puddlejumper12 updated gallery Tower Skeleton (2014)
  • on May 13 14 at 15:55, puddlejumper12 updated gallery Tower Skeleton (2014)
  • on May 13 14 at 15:52, puddlejumper12 added some pictures to a gallery
  • on May 13 14 at 15:40, puddlejumper12 created a new gallery
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