One Shell Square

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One Shell Square
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By kkeps @ 2010-08-01 10:13:05
One Shell Square, located at 701 Poydras Street in the Central Business District of New Orleans, Louisiana, is a 51-story, 697-foot (212 m)-tall skyscraper designed in the international style by Skidmore, Owings and Merrill. It is the tallest building in both the city of New Orleans and the state of Louisiana. The building is primarily used for leaseable office space, with some retail space on the ground level. The design of the building is very similar to Houston's One Shell Plaza, also built by Skidmore, Owings and Merrill. Hines Interest is the developer of One Shell Square and Lincoln Property Company. Shell Oil Company is the building's largest tenant. Current occupancy of the building is approximately 90 percent.

One Shell Square was built using a double tube system, with a steel core and a concrete perimeter, and opened for business in 1972. The exterior of the building is clad in Italian travertine (limestone) and bronze glass. There has been concern over the years regarding the limestone's integrity during severe weather such as tropical systems. Fortunately, these fears did not play out during Hurricane Katrina in August 2005 and the building weathered the storm with minimal damage, such as blown out windows and rain damage. The building reopened to tenants in December 2005.

At the time of its completion in 1972, One Shell Square was the tallest building in the Southeast, surpassing the Wachovia Bank of Georgia building in Atlanta. It held the title of the Southeast's tallest building until 1976, when the Westin Peachtree Plaza in Atlanta surpassed it. It was the first skyscraper in the South to surpass the 200 meter mark.

A heliport—the One Shell Square Emergency Heliport—is located on the roof of the tower.
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