Vermont is a quieter, greener state in the Northeastern US. It is probably the state with the shortest tall building. Nonetheless, these 11 tallest buildings in Vermont tell a story that’s different from most lists of the towering tributes in other states.
One of the oldest states, Vermont’s urban development and larger engineering projects didn’t become prominent until much later than surrounding territories. It’s oldest town is from the mid-1700s where New York, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts had towns in the 1600s. It’s a quieter, greener state. Bordered by New Hampshire on the east, Massachusetts on the South, and Canada to the north, the rural vibe of the state offsets the largest city in its neighbor to the west: New York, New York.
The Tallest Buildings in Vermont Tell a Bit of a Different Story: Education, Housing, Faith and More
Some buildings in this list are for banks and commerce, but most of the constructions are affordable housing complexes, churches, education buildings or government offices. The Green Mountain state sets itself apart from most states whose tallest buildings are nearly all banking and trade-related.
11. Corporate Plaza, Key Bank
Interestingly, this banking structure was completed in 1989 and sits on the corner of Bank Street in Burlington. At 105 high, it incorporates brick to endure the harsh New England winters and ample windows to maximize sunlight during those same long, gray days.
10. Westlake Residences
At 108 feet high, the Westlake Residences in Burlington are among the highest-priced real estate in Vermont. With $1 million premier apartments, this 21st-century residence was completed in 2007 and is 108 feet high. Not only the tallest building in Vermont, it’s likely the priciest group residential structure.
9. St. Mary Star of the Sea
St. Mary Star of the Sea was built in 1909 in Newport, VT. It is still an active church, and Mass is scheduled seven days a week. It has twin spires, a silver statue of the Virgin Mary and is 114 feet high.
8. Hilton Burlington, Hotel Is Eighth of Tallest Buildings in Vermont
The Hilton Burlington is undergoing a rebrand as Hotel Champlain, after the nearby lake that borders the state of New York. Built in 1976, the seven-floor hotel sits at 116 feet tall. It appears to be one of its brand’s most affordable luxury hotels, with search results showing rooms under $200.
7. Sheldon Towers
Down the way in the smaller city of Rutland, VT is Sheldon Towers. At 124 feet, Sheldon Towers appears to be tied with Decker Towers for height. The building was constructed sometime in or before 2000.
6. Decker Towers, Tallest Building in Vermont that Is a Residence
At 124 feet high, it is the first residential structure on this list. Built in 1971, the tower houses apartments for Vermonters in need and is part of the Burlington Housing Authority. It has seen numerous renovations.
Built in 1898, the Masonic Temple of Burlington, VT, is a brick structure with large dormers on all four sides. It is 130 feet high. Today, the building is a mixed office space within the Church Street Marketplace.
4. Montpelier City Hall
New England is an older region. Yet the capital of Vermont—one of many Montpelier’s in the US—was not chartered until 1894. 143 votes decided to create a new main town structure. City Hall in Montpelier was built in 1911 and stands 136 feet high.
3. Vermont State House
In states with smaller urban centers, the capital might be the tallest edifice, which is the case in West Virginia. However, for the tallest buildings in Vermont, the State House comes in third at 140 feet. One of several US cities with the name, Vermont’s Montpelier is its capital, home of this state house built in 1859.
2. Stowe Community Church
A few non-architectural and non-primary sources indicate that this church is actually the tallest building in Vermont. They say it towers over 170 feet. The National Park Service lists it as 165 feet. We can assume the two buildings are happy to be ecumenical and share the prize. The National Park Service also gives 1861 as its construction date.
Sitting on Main Street in the skiing town of Stowe, VT, the non-denominational church has a four-sided clock tower. It is an active church to this day.
1. Ira Allen Chapel, Number One of the Tallest Buildings in Vermont, Has Many Uses
Ira Allen Chapel made the National Register of Historic Places. The Chapel is an ecclesiastical building, holds community meetings and is a library for its host, the University of Vermont (UVM). According to the University’s website, the Ira Allen Chapel was built in 1926 and is 165 feet tall.
The construction is colonial revival. The structure’s name comes from the founder of UVM. It has a large, multi-level steeple with bells and a clock tower.
The Green Mountain State Has a Wide Variety of Purposes for Its Buildings
From new medium-rises to churches to housing, Vermont certainly has a lot going on in its tall buildings.
The photo featured at the top of this post is © Steven Heap/iStock via Getty Images
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