Design

Today, take the time to look up and enjoy Scranton's amazing architecture.
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Our Story in Architecture
Look up! The next time you visit downtown Scranton, take the time to look up and enjoy the city's amazing architecture. Examples of Neoclassical design with Art Nouveau and Art Deco motifs, Gothic style and Chicago School buildings are among the most prevalent styles of architecture adding charm to our downtown business district.
 
Members of Scranton Tomorrow's Design Committee focus on the preservation of the city's historic structures by providing facade improvement grants and loans to downtown property owners. Our efforts have preserved the historic integrity of local commercial properties and leveraged nearly $100,000 in private and public dollars. 
 
Scranton Tomorrow offers fam (familiarization) walking tours to community groups interested in learning more about the downtown small business community and architecture in downtown Scranton. The tour features a hotel housed inside a restored train station, a Masonic Temple and Scottish Rite Cathedral that is now a cultural and performing arts venue, and a Beaux Arts building with an iconic sign that still illuminates our downtown today. As you will see, every building tells a story.
 
Highlights of the tour include: 
 
  • Radisson Lackawanna Station (1907-08)
    700 Lackawanna Avenue
    Designed by Kenneth Murchison 
    Neo-Classical Revival Style
    Listed on National Register of Historic Places

    Formerly the home of the Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Railroad Station, the historic Radisson Lackawanna Station Hotel is an artistic gem with ornamented mosaic tile floor, a barrel-vaulted Tiffany stained-glass ceiling, rare Siena marble walls, and 36 unique Grueby Faience tile murals. 
 
  • Scranton Cultural Center at the Masonic Temple (1930)
    420 N. Washington Avenue
    Designed by Raymond Hood
    Gothic and Art Deco Styles
    Listed on National Register of Historic Places

    The distinguished Scranton Cultural Center at the Masonic Temple is a prime example of our cultural, historical and architecturally rich past. Built in 1930, the temple is a mix of Gothic and Art Deco styles designed by Raymond Hood, a world-renowned architect of the 1800s. Today, the building is home to the Scranton Cultural Center and serves as a gathering place for our community’s cultural endeavors. Free public tours of this magnificent building are offered regularly. 
 
  • Scranton Electric Building (1896)
    507 Linden Street
    Designed by Lansing C. Holden
    Beaux Arts Style
    Listed on National Register of Historic Places

    As early as 1910, an electric sign atop the Board of Trade building could be seen after dark from many vantage points throughout the City of Scranton. The 8-story building was Scranton's first skyscraper. In early photos, the sign reads "Watch Scranton Grow." The message was later changed to "Scranton - The Electric City" to celebrate the city's position as the first in the United States with a commercially viable electric streetcar line. The sign burned brightly for more than six decades until it was extinguished in the early 1970s, a victim of economic hard times. On December 9, 2004, the Electric City Sign came to life once again, a symbol of a resurgent Scranton. The restoration of the Electric City light was made possible by a community-wide fundraising campaign. Through the generosity of these donors, the sign will continue to shine as an icon of our past and beacon to our future. 
 
  • Connell Building (1894-1896)
    129 N. Washington Avenue 
    Designed by Lansing C. Holden
    Neoclassical Style
    Listed in the National Register of Historic Places

    Named in honor of William Connell, a multi-millionaire coal operator, banker, and politician, the Connell Building was originally contstructed in 1894 as a 6-story brick and stone building to house the administrative offices of the Connell Coal Company. Mr. Connell purchased the building next door in 1898, connected the two structures, and added two floors to create the finest 8-story office building in the city. In 1901, he purchased another adjoining property to create the beautiful landmark that stands on N. Washington Avenue today. in 2010, the building underwent another transformation when it was renovated to create luxury apartments, the Connell Lofts. 
 
  • Scranton Times Building (1924-1926)
    149 Penn Avenue
    Designed by Edward Davis and George M.D. Lewis
    Palazzo and Classical Styles

    Originally designed as a 4-story building to accommodate newspaper offices for the Scranton Times, this classic structure was designed to be both functional and beautiful with many notable features. Large windows at the street level encouraged visitors to catch a glimpse into the newspaper world. Stationed above the Penn Avenue entrances, bronze owls created at Louis C. Tiffany's Studios in New York City feature green eyes that once lit up at night. In 1950, a fifth floor was added for the broadcasting studios and transmitting tower needed for the company's new FM radio station, WQAN. Today, the building is still home to the Scranton Times and its family of radio stations. 
 
  • ‚ÄčLackawanna County Courthouse (1881-1884; 1896 remodel)
    200 N. Washington Avenue
    Original design by Isaac G. Perry
    Addition Designed by B. Taylor Lacey
    Victorian Gothic, Romanesque Revival Styles
    Listed on the National Register of Historic Places

    Prior to becoming the stately centerpiece of a downtown filled with architectural gems, Courthouse Square was an area of swampland known as Lily Pond. In 1879, the Lackawanna Iron & Coal Company deeded a block of land surrounded by Washington Avenue, Linden Street, Adams Avenue, and Spruce Street for development of public buildings and a park. Construction of the Lackawanna County Courthouse followed. The original 2-story building designed by Isaac G. Perry was completed in 1884. In 1886, a third story designed by B. Taylor Lacey was added. In 1929, its clock tower was redesigned by Harry Duckworth after roof tiles fell from the spire. The building is significant architecturally and historically as it was the site of the first meeting of the Anthracite Coal Strike Commission. President Theodore Roosevelt created the commission in 1902 to peacefully end the Great Strike of anthracite coal workers.
 
 
Sources: Historical Architectural Review Board City of Scranton, Lackawanna Historical Society, Lackawanna Heritage Valley National and State Heritage Area

Learn more:
 
 
 

© Scranton Tomorrow 2017

1011 N. Main Avenue,

Scranton, PA 18508

Email: lizbaldi@scrantontomorrow.org

Phone: 570.963.5901

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