Razed in Atlanta: 6 great buildings we lost

These gems weren’t as lucky as the Fox Theatre
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Atlanta has more than earned its reputation as a city too focused on the future to preserve its past. Just 42 years ago, we nearly allowed our premier architectural gem, the Fox Theatre, to be torn down and turned into a parking lot. Aghast citizens successfully petitioned to save it, but here lie six great buildings that weren’t so lucky.

Terminal Station Atlanta
Terminal Station

Photograph courtesy of the Kenan Research Center at the Atlanta History Center

Terminal Station
(1905–1972)
This elegant Beaux Arts train station (designed by the same firm that created the Fox) was topped with a red tile roof and twin minarets. It was once Atlanta’s transportation hub, where well-heeled travelers like FDR, commuters, and soldiers would hop on the Crescent route to ride to New York and New Orleans. Its demolition—to make way for the Richard B. Russell Federal Building—is considered by many to be the city’s single greatest architectural loss.

Kimball House Hotel
Kimball House Hotel

Photograph courtesy of the Kenan Research Center at the Atlanta History Center

Kimball House Hotel
(1885–1959)
Occupying nearly an entire block, the 357-room hotel was actually Kimball House No. 2, replacing its smaller predecessor, which burned down in 1883. Considered at one time to be the finest hotel in the South, it was demolished during 1950s urban renewal in favor of a parking deck (still standing in Five Points).

Paramount Theater Atlanta
Paramount Theater

Photograph courtesy of the Kenan Research Center at the Atlanta History Center

Paramount Theater
(1920–1960)
The city once had several gilded “movie palaces.” Many know the Loew’s Grand (demolished in 1978), which hosted the 1939 Gone with the Wind premiere. But the adjacent Italian Renaissance Paramount Theater (the Howard Theater until 1929) was just as lavish. The site is now a plaza by the Georgia-Pacific building downtown.

Greyhound Bus Terminal Atlanta
Greyhound Bus Terminal

Photograph courtesy of the Kenan Research Center at the Atlanta History Center

Greyhound Bus Terminal
(c. 1940–2004)
Like most midcentury Greyhound stations across the country, the two-story structure echoed the Streamline Moderne style of the company’s buses with a blue-and-white facade and rounded corners. It eventually fell victim to John Portman’s expanding AmericasMart.

Atlanta Cabana Motel
Atlanta Cabana Motel

Photograph courtesy Special Collections and Archives, Georgia State University Library

Atlanta Cabana Motel
(1958–2002)
Built by the casino mogul who later developed Caesars Palace, Atlanta’s first “motor hotel” was a slice of Miami Beach kitsch on Peachtree Street, with acres of tile work and mirrors, rococo statues, and a Rat Pack-y vibe. It had devolved to budget hotel status when it was finally torn down for the Spire condos.

Hightower Textile Engineering Building
Hightower Textile Engineering Building

Photograph courtesy Special Collections and Archives, Georgia State University Library

Hightower Textile Engineering Building
(1949–2002)
Architects still mourn the loss of this Georgia Tech classroom building, one of the city’s finest examples of the Bauhaus-influenced International style that did away with ornamentation in favor of functionalism and utility. Tech razed it for a new building and greenspace.

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