Key Tower

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Key Tower
Key Tower (2018) (2).jpg
Key Tower's south side faces Public Square
Record height
Tallest in Ohio since 1991[I]
Preceded byTerminal Tower
General information
Location127 Public Square
Cleveland, Ohio
Coordinates41°30′04″N 81°41′37″W / 41.50111°N 81.69361°W / 41.50111; -81.69361Coordinates: 41°30′04″N 81°41′37″W / 41.50111°N 81.69361°W / 41.50111; -81.69361
Construction startedOctober 17, 1988
OpeningJanuary 1992
OwnerThe Millennia Companies[1]
Architectural947 feet (289 m)[2]
Roof888 feet (271 m)
Technical details
Floor count57[2]
Floor area1,249,981 square feet (116,127.0 m2)
Design and construction
ArchitectCesar Pelli[2]
DeveloperRichard E. Jacobs Group
Structural engineerSkilling Ward Magnusson Barkshire

Key Tower is a skyscraper on Public Square in downtown Cleveland, Ohio. Designed by architect César Pelli, it is the tallest building in the state of Ohio, the 26th-tallest in the United States, and the 165th-tallest in the world.[3] The building reaches 57 stories or 947 feet (289 m) to the top of its spire, and it is visible from up to 20 miles (32 km) away. The tower contains about 1.5 million square feet (139,355 m²) of office space.[4]

Key Tower's anchor tenant is KeyCorp, a major regional financial services firm. On the top floor is a boutique intellectual property firm Amin, Turocy & Watson, LLP. In 2014 the law firm of BakerHostetler announced that it would move its headquarters to the building, taking up several floors being vacated by KeyCorp.[5] The international law firm Squire Patton Boggs is headquartered here and a major tenant. It is also headquarters to Dan T. Moore Companies, located on the 27th floor. Key Tower is connected to the Marriott at Key Center, built in conjunction with the tower, and the older Society for Savings Building. It is the tallest building between Philadelphia and Chicago. It is also the tallest building in the Midwest United States outside of Chicago.

On January 1, 2017, Wells Real Estate Funds purchased Key Center[6], including Key Tower, Marriott at Key Center, Society for Savings Building, and the underground Memorial Plaza Garage. The purchase price was $267.5 million.


It was originally built as the Society Center and was the headquarters for Cleveland-based Society Corporation. Society had recently acquired Cleveland Trust and canceled Cleveland Trust's plans for an even taller building on Public Square. Its opening ended the Terminal Tower's 60-year reign as the tallest building in Ohio.

It was renamed Key Tower after Society merged with KeyCorp and took the KeyCorp name. Indeed, it was decided to make Cleveland the headquarters for the new KeyCorp because it was felt the then-Society Center was more commensurate with the merged bank's status as a major bank. Pelli originally intended its design for the Norwest Center in Minneapolis, but a late change to the site led to Pelli designing a new tower for it.

Key Tower was developed by the Richard E. Jacobs Group.[6]

When Society Center was completed in 1991 by Turner Construction Company, it became the tallest building between Chicago and New York City. The 975-foot (297 m) Comcast Center in Philadelphia assumed this distinction in 2007. The Chamber of Commerce Building stood on the tower's site from 1898 to 1955.[7]

F-111, James Rosenquist's large pop art painting, hung in the tower's lobby until building owner Richard Jacobs sold it to the Museum of Modern Art in 1996. He replaced it in 1998 with Songs for Sale, a mural by artist David Salle.[8] In October 2005, Key Bank installed four 15-foot (4.6 m) long illuminated logos at the base of the tower's crowning pyramid. Each sign weighs 1,500 pounds (680 kg).

A smaller-scale building was proposed by Pelli to be built in Hartford, Connecticut during the late 1980s, but the plan was ultimately canceled.[9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Jarboe, Michelle (2017-01-31). "Key Tower returns to local ownership, with $267.5 million sale to Millennia Companies". The Plain Dealer. Retrieved 2017-02-01.
  2. ^ a b c d "Key Tower - The Skyscraper Center". Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat.
  3. ^ "The World's Tallest Buildings | Statistics | EMPORIS".
  4. ^ "Society Center". The Encyclopedia of Cleveland History. Case Western Reserve University. 1997-07-22. Retrieved 2009-08-22.
  5. ^ "BakerHostetler plans move to Key Tower from PNC Center in 2016". 3 January 2014. Retrieved 4 June 2014.
  6. ^ a b Jarboe, Michelle (2009-04-21). "Jacobs Group no longer owns stake in Key Center". The Plain Dealer. Cleveland, Ohio. Retrieved 2009-04-22.
  7. ^ "Chamber of Commerce Building". Encyclopedia of Cleveland History. Case Western Reserve University. Retrieved 2007-01-06.
  8. ^ Litt, Steven. "Salle Mural Quietly Fills Key Tower Void", The Plain Dealer. March 22, 1998.
  9. ^ "Key Tower". Emporis. Retrieved 2009-08-22.

External links[edit]