Heaviest Corner on Earth
Heaviest Corner on Earth
3.5
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3.5
3.5 of 5 bubbles36 reviews
Excellent
10
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9
Average
9
Poor
6
Terrible
2

lamarbradley
Nashville, TN1,205 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2021
We visited here on the Ghosts and Graveyards Driving Tour and our guide gave us a history of the founding on Birmingham and the developments in industry that led to the construction of these large buildings in the early 1900s. These buildings were the tallest in the south at the time they were constructed and the fact that they were located on adjacent streets in a blossoming city was pretty amazing. There were ghosts associated with three of the buildings.
Written July 16, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

An0nyMs
Tucson, Arizona1,452 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2023 • Solo
I'm including a photo taken from 20th Street at 1st Avenue. Many of the windows were missing, which actually made the buildings more interesting to see because they looked ghostly. I didn't check for information about what's happening or for a timeline.
Written October 4, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

joan&mike
Mattoon, IL693 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2014 • Couples
After lunch we saw the “Heaviest Corner on Earth”. Stuff I learned from Wikipedia: the intersection of 20th Street and 1st Avenue North bears this distinction from the early 20th century. Obviously a term to promote the area, it came about as a result of a tall building being built on each corner of this intersection close to each other in time. The buildings were four of the tallest structures in the South (at that time): the ten story Woodward building was built in 1902. It was followed by the sixteen story Brown Marx Building in 1906, the 16 story Empire (1909) and the American Trust & Savings Bank (21 stories, 1912).
Written December 2, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Porthos7
West Chester, OH6,320 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2014 • Solo
Well.. the other reviews say it all. Not much to see but at one time this (supposedly) used to be the heaviest corner on earth. Yes, you have to look for the plaque stating the specifics (1st ave N/20th St N - "in" ornamental bushes). Most of the buildings in this area are abandoned or not at full occupancy - it's kinda odd, because the space is beautiful, but I guess no one wants to rent the office space - but don't think it's not safe - just the opposite. The surrounding area seems to be having an urban renewal. There is a neat little peanut roasting place around the corner that looks like it hasn't changed since the 1800's. But you can actually go out into the middle of the "heaviest" corner intersection and take pictures. Go see it right after/before seeing the Sloss furnace. One way or another - it's a quirky place to tell the grandkids that you visited - so go see it!
Written February 21, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

WorldTripperTexan
Birmingham, AL135 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2018 • Friends
Do you know the three things that had to be invented or discovered in order to construct buildings taller than about 5 stories? All 3 came about around the early 1900s, resulting in a corner of Birmingham's first skyscrapers that have preserved a taste of that era, mixed in with shorter, older but lovely restored buildings on 1st Ave North near 20th Street. I'll share the answers at the end. Two aspects help one to easily peg the decade of construction. First, only the street sides were finished. The back and sides were usually left unfinished, just unadorned raw brick. In earlier construction the short buildings were built in a row, often joined together with common or almost touching walls like townhomes. These skyscrapers were built the same way, so when one looks up around the sides, it feels a little like seeing the under slip of a gorgeous detailed ball gown. No other skyscrapers were built adjoining these, so their undecorated sides are exposed. The second aspect was that early skyscrapers were built in the style of a column: the first 2 to 4 floors were alike to form the base, the middle 10 to 20 floors had more plain matching windows and cornices, then there was usually a ledge and more ornate decor on the windows of the top 2 to 4 floors to resemble the more ornate top of a column. The best top is The Empire building with the surrent Elyton Hotel. The faces were carved for the top in the style of ancient emporers, but said to resemble the owner, builder and architect and have surviced long past their lifetimes. One or more of these buildings were banks at one time. The Elyton kept the original lobby with interesting detailing on the stairs and on the inside and doors of the elevators. The other unique detail that is now rare is a mail drop. Each floor has a slot to drop letters down to the first floor where the postman can gather them from an ornately carved metal door. The first floor restaurant is very upscale, but the best treat is the rooftop bar, with a great view of the city.
Ok, did you guess the 3 necessary innovations for skyscaper construction? Steel to hold the frame more than 5 stories, Mr Otis invented the elevator, and electricity enabled the interior rooms and offices to get light. (Early buildings were often in U shape or had skylights beore electricity. After your self guided tour, reward yourself with freshly roasted peanuts on Morris Ave, the cobblestoned street right behind the "world's heaviest corner." By the way, the natives realize it is a bit of an exaggeration, but this moniker comes from the delight of visitors to Birmingham who had never seen a building taller than 5 stories!!
Written January 22, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

jennibegood
Birmingham, AL40 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2015 • Solo
Yes there was history at one time about 4 banks. Guess what? They are not there anymore and no since of history was preserved. And why should it? Heaviest corner....on earth?? Really Alabama? I love you but no. Stop this. Stop calling this corner this. It is just silliness.
Written July 30, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

tguido44
Mobara, Japan3 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2014 • Couples
Way back when this was, and still is, considered the Heaviest Corner 0n earth, due to the skyscrapers on this corner.At the time, these buildings were the tallest in Alabama. But while your in the area, its a must to go around the corner to Morris Ave.There you'll find the "Peanut Depot". World famous peanuts.The Hams little spot of heaven.
Written May 17, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

ben-jam-in-done-that
Birmingham, AL291 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2012
Alot of history, but really who cares! IF you go, walk down Morris Avenue and visit the Peanut Depot, get some peanuts and walk down the cobblestones.
Written July 19, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

karinedch
Lawrenceburg, KY168 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2019 • Couples
Elyton is a delightful hotel on the “heaviest corner”. Check out architecture from other buildings from ‘Moonshine’, which is Elyton’s rooftop bar. No checkin guest pass required to get to the bar, and it has an indoor seating area as well as an outdoor seating patio.
Written June 28, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

ReddogTechmom
Houston, TX74 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2018 • Couples
This was almost humorous, but interesting nonetheless. We walked over the large medallion by accident as we were scoping out restaurants for brunch. From the reading of the inscription in the sidewalk (yes, it's just a large circle in the cement with a cursory description) you wouldn't really understand what the big deal was. When we ate at a restaurant located on that corner, the waiter informed us of the story behind the strange label. From looking at it you wouldn't know that the buildings on all sides were among the first steel skyscrapers in the southeast. I'm sure at the time it was quite the curiosity but in today's world it doesn't have the same impact. Today, it's "just a street corner".
Written August 18, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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