Most skylines are famous for one or two iconic buildings, and it’s nearly impossible to imagine these cities without their standout structures. But, believe it or not, Paris existed before the Eiffel Tower and the tallest building in New York prior to the completion of the Chrysler Building (which preceded the Empire State Building by 11 months) was the Trump Building. So let’s celebrate some of the world’s greatest architectural marvels with photos from their infancy.

Space Needle, Seattle (completed 1961)

Space needle seattle construction Photo: Wikimedia

Space needle seattle construction-1 Photo: VintageSeattle

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Space Needle Photo: Seattle Municipal Archives/Flickr

Eiffel Tower, Paris (completed 1889)

Eiffel Tower construction-1

Eiffel-Tower-construction Photos: CommentExpress

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Eiffel Tower Photo: TaylorMiles/Flickr

CN Tower, Toronto (completed 1976)

CN Tower construction

CN Tower construction-1 Photos: Skyscraper Page

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CN Tower Photo: kevbo1983/Flickr

Empire State Building, New York City (completed 1931)

Empire State Building construction

Photo: Design You Trust

Empire State Building construction

Photo: Wikimedia

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Empire State Building Photo: Thomas Hawk/Flickr

Sydney Opera House, Sydney (completed 1973)

Sydney Opera House construction Photo: Skyscraper Page

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Sydney Opera House Photo: Vermin Inc/Flickr

Chateau Frontenac, Quebec City (completed 1893)

Chateau Frontenac construction Photo: Wikimedia

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Chateau Frontenac Photo: Eric Bégin/Flickr

Transamerica Pyramid, San Francisco (completed 1972)

Transamerica Pyramid construction

Transamerica Pyramid construction-1 Photos: ImageKind

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Transamerica Pyramid Photo: imgur

Hotel Vancouver, Vancouver (the third and final incarnation of the Hotel Vancouver was completed in 1939)

Hotel Vancouver construction Photo: City of Vancouver Archives

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Hotel Vancouver Photo: BuzzBuzzHome/Instagram

Chrysler Building, New York City (completed 1930)

Chrystlar buildng

Photo: WiredNewYork

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Chrysler Building Photo: joiseyshowaa/Flickr

Willis Tower, Chicago (completed 1973)

Willis Tower construction

Willis Tower construction-1 Photos: Skyscraper Page

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Willis Tower Photo: Pat Hawks/Flickr

Capitol Building, Washington (new dome construction completed in 1863)

Capitol Building construction Photo: About.com

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Capitol Building Photo: VinothChandar/Flickr

 Calgary Tower, Calgary (completed 1968)

Calgary Tower construction Photo: CalgaryTower.com

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Calgary Tower Photo: k.mckeown/Flickr

Theme Building, Los Angeles (completed 1961)

Theme building construction Theme building construction-1 Photos: SoCalHistory

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Theme Building Photo: Thomas Hawk/Flickr

Bank of America Plaza, Dallas (completed 1985)

Bank of America Plaza construction Photo: Flickr

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Bank of America Plaza

Olympic Stadium, Montreal (completed 1976)

Olympic Stadium Montreal construction Photos: Skyscraper Page

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Olympic Stadium Photo: meantux/Flickr

Burj Khalifa, Dubai (completed 2010)

Burj construction Photo: Wikimedia

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Burj Khalifa Photo: yowalid/Flickr

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