The skyscraper boom of the 1980s gave us some remarkable buildings, among which PPG Place instantly secured a place as the locals’ favorite skyscraper. Old Pa Pitt has nothing to say against PPG Place, but if you asked him which of the 1980s skyscrapers was his favorite, he might (depending on the day, the hour, the lighting conditions, and so on) tell you it was this one. Like the best Art Deco skyscrapers (and indeed we find it in Wikipedia’s category “Art Deco architecture in Pennsylvania“), it is bold and subtle at the same time, playing with references to downtown Pittsburgh’s most famous landmarks.
Designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox, a firm that has since grown into quite a big deal in the world, this building fits extraordinarily well with its urban environment. It presents very different faces from different directions, and yet the whole is entirely harmonious.
EQT Plaza is just across the street from the Wood Street subway station.
Spelled “Centre” because the conventional wisdom in the real-estate business holds that you can raise the rents if you use a British spelling. Here we see it from the Diamond. This nest of octagons is, depending on how you measure it, our fifth-tallest building, one foot shorter than Fifth Avenue Place. The top, however, is higher than the top of Fifth Avenue Place or even PPG Place (our third-tallest), because downtown slopes upward toward Grant Street, so One Oxford Centre is built on higher ground.
The first few floors of this building are a shopping arcade connected by a meandering skywalk to the Kaufmann’s (now Macy’s) department store a few blocks away
One Oxford Centre is a short walk from either the Steel Plaza or the First Avenue subway station.