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Unusual Buildings in the U.S.
Thursday, July 31, 2014

When in the appraisal business, you come across many bizarre and unconventional buildings. Bizarre doesn't apply to a house that isn't designed like all the others in the neighborhood or an office building with windows covering the whole outside. But, buildings straight out of nursery rhymes and stories exist across the world - and right here in the U.S. As the first in an installment series, we'll take a look at some of the wackiest building located in the U.S.

Longaberger Basket
As we're based in Ohio, what's better place to start than the Longaberger basket? Longaberger Company is a manufacturer and distributor of - you guessed it! - handcrafted wood baskets. The company started selling hand-woven baskets in 1976, in the village of Dresden, Licking County, Ohio. As the chosen appraisal firm for Licking County, Lexur Appraisal has had the privilege of appraising the Longaberger headquarters.

Through years of hard work, the Longaberger Company moved from its small factory to a larger one and built the basket. The headquarters building is shaped like the company's top-selling basket, the Medium Market Basket. Opened in 1997, the basket is 180,000 square feet with seven stories. This basket isn't like one you may carry, though. The 150 ton handles are heated in cold winter months so snow doesn't stay on them and to prevent damage from ice. People are even welcome to visit the giant basket for tours and events.  

Kansas City Public Library
Known as the Community Bookshelf, the Kansas City Public Library in Kansas City, Missouri, has the spines of countless famous books incorporated as a feature on the walls of the library's parking garage. Standing at 25 feet high and 9 feet wide, these books are anything but flimsy paperbacks.

The Community bookshelf was constructed in 2004 when residents felt the community needed more parking in the downtown area. To make the idea more fun, the Kansas City Public Library Board of Trustees asked residents to pick their favorite titles to be included in the bookshelf. There are 22 books represented in the Community Bookshelf and some titles include: Catch 22, Goodnight Moon, To Kill a Mockingbird, A Tale of Two Cities, and The Lord of the Rings, among others. Children's stories, classic literature, modern stories and stories about Kansas all line this bookshelf. People are more than welcome to visit the library during hours of operation.

United States Air Force Academy Cadet Chapel
When you think military, you may think of order and rigid uniformity. That's not the case with the United States Air Force Academy Cadet Chapel located in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Well, the pattern and design may be streamlined, but it is nothing like you've ever seen at any military academy or base.

Construction began on the chapel in 1959 and was finished in 1962. The chapel was designed by Walter Netsch and the United States Air Force Academy wanted a space to meet the spiritual needs of cadets of all faiths. Made out of glass, steel and aluminum, the triangular Cadet Chapel reaches 150 feet tall and the 17 spires of the building are easily spotted when driving on the interstate. Visitors are welcome to any services, as they're open to the public. And people are welcome to schedule tours of the 150-foot tall building.


Now, when you think of eccentric and unconventional buildings, you'll know it wasn't just architecture and designs in historical buildings in Europe and across the globe. The U.S. is full of attention-grabbing structures that are open for exploration.

Next month, we'll explore more bizarre buildings, like a house straight out of a nursery rhyme. Do you have any remarkable structures you've visited and want to see it on our blog? Let us know in the comments.





 
 
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