Darkness at Bay
Building History for Towering Heights (Clue)
Name of Clue
Building History for Towering Heights Apartment Complex
Type of Clue
Document, history, civic
Nothing too complicated here. We’ve got the original plan and designs for construction back in the ‘20s. As you can see here, it was a series of high-rise town homes, essentially, intended for families of people working down-town. One ’house’ to a floor, and pretty sizable ones at that. The bottom seven were rented out, and the family that built them took over the top floor. The Bakers, of course; at the time, the building was known as the Baker Building, and it didn’t get a rename until, well, decades later.
If you check out the original designs here, you see some pretty interesting stuff. Half this side of their floor was originally submitted with these designs for the second half of a home, but were rated for construction with only these structural supports. Come to find out from some old records they were billing the top floor as a church home for orphans, and were taking a pretty nice supplementary from some charitable foundations that have since dissolved. Probably wanted to set up a communal room time situation, but I just thought the change was odd.
That’s all she wrote for a while; nothing much happened once the building was built until the late thirties when the whole scandal took place. Oh yeah, I know you just asked for the building history, but when I saw all the injunctions and legal brouhaha that was attached to this place, I had to look further. Turns out the Bakers were into some really messed up stuff. Sadists, really. I wouldn’t recommend doing the research, but suffice to say, they lost the kids and were taken to court for some pretty serious charges.
Obviously the building traded hands after this, and the Bakers incorporated to sell off a lot of their assets and shield what else they could. Some out of town investor picked it up after that and put in some heavy duty renovations, way back in the late thirties. Essentially doubled the number of rooms they could rent out, scaled back amenities and rent to target a lower dollar, higher numbers strategy. That being said, part of the contract required the top floor room being owned by the Bakers’ children. Records suggest they didn’t have children of their own, and I can’t imagine any of them would want to live there after what happened.
That company owned the building for a while, up to the seventies. Afterwards it was purchased by a Jeremiah Rizzopos, who has owned it since. I don’t know the full extent of the tax benefits this building has got to include, because there’s a fair number of suicides and all attached to the building—murder suicides aren’t exactly uncommon. Very low rental rates, to boot, on top of rent not being that high to begin with. It’s technically been reclassified as low-income housing, actually.
Notes and Data