One Oxford Centre: The Crown Jewel of Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh is a city of many wonders, but one that stands out among them is the magnificent One Oxford Centre. Known for its distinctive features and impressive architecture, this towering structure is a key part of the city’s skyline.
A Brief Overview
Constructed by the acclaimed DeBartolo Company and developed by Oxford Development Company, One Oxford Centre began its journey to the skies on May 31, 1980, and was completed by April 1983. This remarkable edifice, one of Pittsburgh’s tallest buildings, rises to a height of 615 feet (187 m) and houses 45 floors.
The total cost of construction amounted to a whopping $140 million. Today, this colossal structure covers an area of approximately 932,219 sq ft.
The mastermind behind One Oxford Centre’s aesthetic appeal is the architecture firm Hellmuth, Obata, & Kassabaum. Completed in 1983, the tower’s design is a perfect blend of modern architecture and functionality.
The tower provides nearly 1,500,000 square feet of office and high-end retail space. It’s home to a full-service health/business club, The Rivers Club, and a multi-level parking garage. It also offers street-level retail and office space.
At night, the Centre is a sight to behold. Forty-three 1,500-watt spotlights illuminate the building, creating a glowing effect that outshines any other highrise in the United States.
One Oxford Centre is a hub for various commercial entities. Some of its notable tenants include Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney PC, HFF Inc., the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland Pittsburgh Branch, and Morgan, Lewis & Bockius.
A Glimpse Into The Past
The journey of One Oxford Centre began with a proposal submitted for county approval in October 1978, known as the “Grant Land project”. This proposal marked the first step towards the creation of this architectural marvel.
In April 1983, the DeBartolo Company, revealed plans for a taller “Two Oxford Centre” to be constructed northeast of the main tower. However, the project never materialized due to the inability to secure a majority tenant.
In The Limelight
One Oxford Centre has made its mark in popular culture as well. It’s featured in the movie Land of the Dead as the Fiddler’s Green luxury high-rise.
This iconic building also made an appearance in episode 1656 of the television program Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood on “Up and Down”. Mr. Rogers and the “Speed Delivery”-man Mr. McFeely rode the building’s escalators and elevators up and down.
Interestingly, the CBS daytime soap opera, The Young and the Restless, uses the tower for exterior shots of the Newman tower.
Since its inception in 1983, Oxford Development had been the sole owner and operator of the property. However, in January 2016, San Francisco-based Shorenstein Properties acquired One Oxford Centre.
As part of its acquisition, Shorenstein implemented a capital improvement program to repair deferred maintenance throughout the property and upgrade the lobby and common areas.
One Oxford Centre is more than just a building. It’s a testament to Pittsburgh’s architectural prowess and a symbol of the city’s soaring ambition. Whether it’s in movies, TV shows, or the hearts of Pittsburgh’s residents, One Oxford Centre continues to leave an indelible mark.