- 340 North Robert Street -
- 1889, Solon Beman -
The Pioneer Building's owner boasted on his stationery that the building stood "At the Business Heart of Saint Paul." The high value of land in the "100 percent block" demanded a tall building so the Pioneer Press looked to Chicago for an architect familiar with the new metal skeleton-frame construction technique that made skyscrapers possible. The twelve-story walls rose higher than any others in Saint Paul. An elevator ride to the top floor offers an excellent view of the inner workings of the lift mechanism, the steel bracing that reinforces the four floors added in 1910, and the only surviving example of an open light court in the Twin Cities.