Standing like a gleaming beacon of hope and bravery, the Gateway Arch in St. Louis was built as a monument to those brave enough to discover the whole new world of the West. It is erected on the founding spot of St. Louis, nestled on the banks of the Mississippi River. It is the passageway to a new life, representing the bright visions of both the past and the future. Experience this incredible memorial for yourself. The hotels near the Gateway Arch in St. Louis offer an ideal location to visit the landmark as well to explore the best of the city.
The Construction of the Gateway Arch
In an effort to revitalize the riverfront and create jobs, the idea of the Gateway Arch was shaped. For its creation, the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial Association was formed to oversee the project. Plans were drawn up by Eero Saarinen and were approved by the committee.
The MacDonald Construction Company of St. Louis was awarded the contract as the lowest bidders for the job. They broke ground in 1960 and laid the foundation in 1961. The first leg was set in place in February, 1963. A total of 143 stainless steel pieces assembled the entire arch, each piece getting smaller as it reached the top. Set into place by cranes, the piece’s double skinned walls were filled with concrete and tension bars. A truss was set in place to keep the two legs secure at 530 feet, but as construction continued and the arch was made steady, the truss was removed.
A time capsule, signed by 762,000 schoolchildren, was inserted into the keystone of the arch on October 28, 1965. After a blessing by both a Catholic priest and a rabbi, the keystone was then secured into the top of the arch. The Arch was opened to the public in 1967 and the internal tram began running to the top later in July.
The design of the Gateway Arch is quite incredible. Each leg is equilateral triangles, going from 54 feet around to 17 feet. The structure is built to withstand an earthquake and can sway in high winds by as much as 9 inches. A tram system runs within the legs to bring visitors up to the observation deck where they look out windows onto the world below. Be sure to visit the underground Visitors’ Center, nestled between the arching legs.
Stay Close at the Hotels near the Gateway Arch in St. Louis
Don’t stay miles away from this incredible landmark you’ve traveled so far to see. With a large number of hotels near the Gateway Arch in St. Louis to choose from, you’ll be sure to be settled close by. Open your window shades at the Casino Queen Hotel and look across the beautiful Mississippi River to gaze upon the Gateway Arch. Or, stay right by the legs of the Gateway Arch at the Hampton Inn Gateway Arch Downtown. Enjoy exploring the Mississippi River and downtown area with your furry friend at the pet-friendly Hyatt Regency St. Louis at the Arch.