Tuesday, August 23, 2011
Riverside Church Entrance Detail
Built in: 1926-30
Architect: Allen, Pelton and Collons
Photographed in 2011
The Riverside Church in the City of New York is an interdenominational (American Baptist and United Church of Christ) church in New York City, famous for its elaborate Neo-Gothic architecture—which includes the world's largest tuned carillon bell. It is located in Morningside Heights between Riverside Drive and Claremont Avenue and between 120th Street and 122nd Street.
The tallest church in the United States and the 24th tallest in the world, was designed by Allen, Pelton and Collens. Henry C. Pelton and Charles Collens were commissioned by Rockefeller to travel across Spain and France to find inspiration for their project. They took for their model of the nave the 13th Century Gothic Cathedral of Chartres, France, and for the massive single bell tower that dwarfs the rest of the church, one of the towers at Laon, but here with a base 100 feet square, and built on a steel frame the equivalent of a 22-story building (392 feet). Inlaid on the floor is a labyrinth similar to those at Chartres and elsewhere. The construction was begun in 1926 and, with delays caused by a spectacular fire in the wooden scaffolding, finished — with its first service at the main altar — October 5, 1930.
The church received New York City Landmark status in 2000.