Cleveland plans to demolish Breuer's 1971 Ameritrust Tower, while Boston will demolish Paul Rudolph's 1960 Blue Cross Building. It is important to note that both of these structures belong to the "non-canonical version" of modernism and are very interesting in the context of the history of American architecture of the 20th century. They are also not in disrepair, and their only serious flaw is their small size: the Breuer building has 28 floors, and the Rudolph building - only 13.
In Boston, the Blue Cross Building plans to build an 80-story skyscraper designed by Renzo Piano. The Italian architect does not object to the preservation of Rudolph's building, and even considers himself to be admirers of his work, but notes that otherwise citizens will not receive a new square at the foot of the skyscraper (it should appear on the site of the 1960 architectural monument). "Blue Cross Building" is interesting because in his project the architect moved away from the strict forms of the "international style", and the facade of the building is richly decorated with concrete profiles, in which the building's life support systems are hidden. Thus, Paul Rudolph, placing the heating pipes outside the building, to some extent anticipated the discovery of Piano and Richard Rogers, which they used in the project of the Georges Pompidou Center in Paris, and also - already in the formal solution of the building - indicated the path to the development of brutalism in American architecture.
Breuer's high-rise building in Cleveland is already a typical building in this style. Unfortunately, its new owners are planning to reduce the building's operating costs, and the Ameritrust Tower is no longer up to modern energy standards. Also, the new building, which has been commissioned to design by Cohn Pedersen Fox, will have more floors and each one will be more spacious, which will give the opportunity to receive, in the end, a larger amount in rent.
In recent years, the buildings of Rudolph and Breuer are often under threat of demolition in the United States: several buildings of the first in Florida have already died, and the buildings of the second are either being rebuilt beyond recognition, or destroyed, like the Central Library in Gross Point, Michigan.
Docomomo and other organizations that are trying to save these monuments often face not only the greed of property owners and the indifference of officials, but also the passivity of the population. Unlike the case with almost any building a century ago, neither local residents nor any public committees are eager to defend newer buildings. Modernist buildings, a recent survey by the American Institute of Architects found, say little to the average American who prefers the White House or Las Vegas casinos to the Crown Hall or Seagram Building.
UPD: Renzo Piano stopped development of his 80-story building project for downtown Boston due to conflicts with the client. The project will now be handled by local architecture firm CBT Architects.
In the meantime, supporters of the preservation of the "Blue Cross Building" have managed to impose a 90-day veto on the plans of developers.