The big concrete plaza in front of 25 Park Place is kind of blah, but every once in a while I stop there to admire the marble columns in front of the building. They remind me that so many of Atlanta’s old and lovely buildings have been destroyed and replaced by more modern architecture. But I also think it’s kind of sly that the city kept these pieces so we might ponder them. What were they? Why are they there now?
These three marble columns (and the façade behind it, inside the Career Services center) were once part of the Equitable building, which stood where GSU’s CMII building is now. When it was built in 1892, it was the tallest skyscraper in the city (eight stories — back then that was a tall building). It was also known as the Trust Company of Georgia building.
When it was demolished in 1971, eighteen columns from the building were scattered around the city. I have no idea why these three are here, or how the building’s arched entrance was preserved and installed inside. But I do think these columns are lovely pieces of craftsmanship. It feels like some weird random piece of old Atlanta has been plopped down on a barren and characterless public plaza. I dig the juxtaposition.