Figure: Skyscraper Hotspots in Midtown from 1900 to 1993.
Each map shows the skyscraper hotspots in midtown—those areas with the densest construction—in each period. During the first generation, the period from 1900 to 1919, skyscrapers were mostly built near Madison Square Garden, with a few along 42nd Street. During the second generation, skyscrapers were constructed from the corridor from Penn Station to Grand Central Station. Midtown 3.0, after World War II, was built north of the second generation, running in an arc from Third Avenue up to West 55th Street. During the period from 1979 to 1993, Midtown 4.0 took on a clear westward turn and did not shift north like the prior iterations of midtown. It’s possible that Central Park has been acting like a dam, blocking its movement up the island. Source: Maps by Eon Kim.