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UNITED NATIONS



"Determined to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war. . .
To unite our strength to maintain international peace and security. . ."
--from the Charter of the United Nations

The UNITED NATIONS has its headquarters at 42nd Street and First Avenue on the East Side of Manhattan and at the East River.  The building is 39 stories tall with an aluminum grille, green-tinted glass, and narrow end walls of white marble.  Its construction was a major and significant undertaking for the City after World War II and further established New York City as a major international city and the "capital of the world."

The building was designed by a committee of international architects, including France’s Le Corbusier, Brazil’s Oscar Niemeyer, Sweden’s Sven Markelius and chief architect, America’s Wallace Harrison.  John D. Rockefeller Jr. was instrumental in getting the UN headquarters to locate in New York City and donated the site, which he purchased for $8.5 million.  The Secretariat, 544 feet tall and only 72 feet thick, was primarily designed by Le Corbusier but carried out by Wallace K. Harrison of the U.S., the chairman of the committee and chief architect.  The area was once a tobacco field.   The name, United Nations, was coined by President Franklin D. Roosevelt during World War II when a group of representatives from 26 countries met and pledged their support to continue fighting the Axis Powers.  The organization officially came into existence on October 24, 1945. 

Tour the United Nations and then walk west along East 42nd Street to the Chrysler Building and Grand Central Terminal Station.  It's an easy and short walk.  If you wish, continue walking on 42nd Street to the New York Public Library at Fifth Avenue and then to neon-sparkling Times Square at Seventh Avenue and Broadway.

 


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