Las Vegas Convention Center

Las Vegas Convention Center
Las Vegas Convention Center is one of the largest venues of this type in the nation, with more than 2 million square feet of exhibition space. Only a few other convention centers seem to have exhibition floorspace as large or larger than that, including McCormick Place in Chicago, and the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida

Venetian Casino

Venetian Casino
With 7,117 rooms, the Venetian usually tops the list as the largest hotel in the USA. Several of the largest non-industrial buildings in the world are in Las Vegas, like the Palazzo Resort, with 6,948,980 square feet in a single structure with a footprint of over 2 million square feet. Elsewhere on the Strip are most of the ten largest hotels in the USA, including the MGM Grand (6,852 rooms).

Proctor and Gamble Albany Paper Plant

Proctor and Gamble Albany Paper Plant
This plant manufactures Bounty Paper Towels and Charmin Toilet Paper for the consumer products company Proctor and Gamble. It is connected to a large distribution center, and is located next to a major Marine Corps logistics center.

Merchandise Mart

Merchandise Mart
When it was built in 1930, the 4,000,000 square foot Merchandise Mart, in downtown Chicago, was the largest building in the world. It was built by Marshall Field, the retailer, as a centralized wholesale warehouse for its nationwide sales network. At the end of WWII, it was purchased by members of the Kennedy family, and over the next fifty years, contributed to the family’s post-war wealth and power (until they sold it in 1998). The squat art-deco edifice is still an impressive sight on the city’s architectural boat tour.

Willis Tower

Willis Tower
With a roof at 1,451 feet, the Willis tower in Chicago, built in 1974 as the Sears Tower, is still the tallest building in the country, measured to its roof, which some say is how it should be.

John Deere Milan Parts Distribution Center

John Deere Milan Parts Distribution Center
John Deere’s Parts Distribution Center, in Milan, Illinois, is located next to the airport, just a few miles from the company’s primary assembly plant, and the company headquarters in Moline. The warehouse is 2,800,000 square feet, making it one of the largest distribution centers in the nation. John Deere is one of the largest construction and agricultural equipment companies in the nation.

Riverdale Aluminum Plant

Riverdale Aluminum Plant
The aluminum plant at Riverdale, Iowa, is a mile long, and employs around 2,000 people. It is located on the Mississippi River, and was built by Alcoa from 1946-1948, and is one of the major aluminum rolling mills in the nation. In 2016, Alcoa (the Aluminum Corporation of America), for years the largest aluminum company in the country, created a separate company, Arconic, to own and operate much of its metal manufacturing.

Target Distribution Center Savannah

Target Distribution Center Savannah
This import warehouse for Target opened in 2007, and has more than 2 million square feet, making it one of the largest warehouses in the nation. It is across the road from an Ikea Warehouse, and among more than a dozen large distribution warehouses in the area, north of the airport, and near the busy Port of Savannah, which include a 1,350,000 square foot Home Dept Distribution Center. Target, based in Minneapolis, is one of the largest retailers in the nation. It has a similar import warehouse in Washington State, serving the west coast.

Spaceship Earth Epcot

Spaceship Earth Epcot
The Spaceship Earth sphere at Epcot, in Florida, opened in 1982. It has a diameter of 165 feet, enclosing a volume of 2,352,000 cubic feet, making it likely the largest geodesic enclosure in the USA. A larger geodesic sphere was built for Expo 67, in Montreal, with a diameter of 250 feet (now called the Biosphere, it is not quite a complete sphere, and contains around 7 million cubic feet). The Spaceship Earth sphere, which contains a ride, is perhaps the signature structure at Epcot, the Disney theme park at Walt Disney World that was conceived to be like a permanent Word’s Fair (Epcot is an acronym for Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow).

Cape Canaveral Vehicle Assembly Building

Cape Canaveral Vehicle Assembly Building
Really big rockets, like the Saturn V, which took men to the moon, were developed at places like NASA’s Marshall Space Center in Alabama, where their engines were tested on outdoor stands. Launching was mostly done at Cape Canaveral, where rockets would arrive in separate pieces from manufacturers, then assembled at the launch site. This was done in a large vertical building, the Vehicle Assembly Building, which is still there. Since it was vertical, it has a relatively small footprint, 348,000 square feet, but is 526 feet tall, and encloses 130,000,000 cubic feet, making it among the largest buildings in the nation. It is the tallest single-story building in the nation, and the tallest building outside of a metropolitan center.
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