National Park Service U.S. Department of the Interior

National Register of Historic Places Program

The National Register of Historic Places is the official list of the Nation's historic places worthy of preservation. Authorized by the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, the National Park Service's National Register of Historic Places is part of a national program to coordinate and support public and private efforts to identify, evaluate, and protect America's historic and archeological resources.


Property Name Bank of New Orleans (BNO) Building
Reference Number 16000712
State LA
County Orleans
Town New Orleans
Street Address 1010 Common St.
Multiple Property Submission Name N/A
Status Listed 10/11/2016
Areas of Significance Engineering
Link to full file
Although not yet fifty years of age, the BNO Building qualifies for the National Register under Criteria Consideration G, and is locally significant under Criterion C: Design, in the area of Engineering, because it was the first high rise building in New Orleans to utilize high capacity long steel piles, a new steel foundation technology that had previously been limited to offshore oilrigs and other marine structures. With its first application as a deep pile foundation onshore, it allowed for a deeper embedment and a higher design stress than had ever been attempted for steel piles in the city, meaning it could support significantly taller and heavier buildings than had previously been built. The steel piles also provided a needed alternative to the new concrete Brunspile, which was prone to breakage and ill suited for some high rise projects due to a variety of factors such as soil conditions, economic considerations, and design load requirements. The success of the BNO Building foundation, furthermore, was the catalyst for a major revision of the New Orleans Building Code that directly impacted the future of local high rise construction. Several notable skyscrapers, including the 53 story (645 ft) Place St. Charles, were built on similar foundations based on the precedent of the BNO Building and the revised code. Therefore, the BNO Building was a "first" that led to a pattern of development of taller and taller buildings that transformed the city's skyline. In addition, the building's innovative structural system, the framed tube intube, is significant for its association with pioneering structural engineer Fazlur Khan of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM). As one of Khan's first examples of the new system and the first column free concrete high rise building in Orleans Parish, the BNO Building embodies the environment of intense experimentation and risk taking that permeated development in downtown New Orleans in the 1960s. For these reasons, the building is eligible for listing at a local level under Criteria Consideration G: exceptional significance. The period of significance begins in 1967, when building construction began, and ends in 1971 with the building's completion.

Any Associated Files


Weekly List Search Page

Properties are listed in the National Register of Historic Places under four criteria: A, B, C, and D. For information on what these criterion are and how they are applied, please see our Bulletin on How to Apply the National Register Criteria