Saturday, October 16, 2010

Wilde Building

The Wilde Building was an architectural tour de force when it opened in the 1950s in suburban Bloomfield.  Before then, Connecticut General Life Insurance Company (a predecessor of CIGNA) was located in downtown Hartford. 

In the 1950s, CG built this new and very modern glass-faced office building on a huge suburban campus.  Moving the offices of a large company out of center city was unknown at the time, but, alas, it was just the start of decades of moving companies to suburban office parks.

The Wilde Building was designed by Skidmore Owings Merrill.  In recent years, CIGNA had moved many employees to other locations outside Connecticut.  CIGNA came up with a plan to sell off much of its Bloomfield campus for development as a golf course and condominiums.  As part of the plan, they wanted to raze the Wilde Building.

Architectural preservationists rebelled.  The building was saved.


Sharon said...

In the 1950's this must have been a modern wonder. It appears to be in use. Does CIGNA still have offices there?

Lynette said...

Thank goodness this building has been saved! Office parks, blah! Did you notice that the Big Pink in my post today was designed by the same firm as the Wilde Building? Pretty neat, if you ask me. Clean across the country from each other and built 26 years apart--yep, pretty neat! And guess what, the Yellow MAX went right by another Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill building in Portland! It'll be on the blog soon.

Paul - Leeds daily photo said...

I think it still looks fine today, just shows how ahead of the field they were when it was constructed.