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New Brutalism was a strong presence in American architecture by the early 1960s, and this is Missouri's most imposing example of that bold style. Theodore R. Gamble, dynamic president and later chairman of Pet, wanted his new world headquarters to reflect a fresh, assertive image for a company that had expanded far beyond its original product, evaporated milk. This powerful design by Memphis-based Aydelott on a challenging site overlooking a depressed freeway received detailed coverage in the press and professional journals. The thirteen-story tower rises from a plaza above a broad two-story base. The exterior is distinguished by textured concrete, strong lines, a stark western tower, and a distinctive crown. The elevator tower and much of the exterior surfaces are poured-in-place concrete. Other smoother and slightly lighter-colored surfaces of prestressed concrete panels with exposed aggregate are used for wall surfaces and for intricate sunscreens on the east and west facades. A balcony marks an important floor of boardrooms, and Pet's test kitchens with executive offices occupied the crown containing executive suites. Developers Balke Brown, with the architectural firm Lawrence Group, converted the building to residential use in 2007.
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