Capella Tower seen from the ground
|Alternative names||225 South Sixth|
|Location||225 6th Street S.
|Roof||775 ft (236 m)|
|Floor count||56 (53 occupied)|
|Floor area||1,499,994 sq ft (139,354.0 m2)|
|Design and construction|
|Architect||James Ingo Freed
Pei Cobb Freed & Partners
|Developer||Joint Venture of IBM Corporation and
The OPUS Corporation
|Structural engineer||CBM Engineers Inc.
Capella Tower (also 225 South Sixth) is an office skyscraper in Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States. The building opened in 1992 with the First Bank Place being the headquarters for First Bank System. In 1997, First Bank System acquired US Bancorp and changed the name of the building to US Bancorp Place. The headquarters of US Bancorp moved into the US Bancorp Center in 2000, whereupon the tower changed to 225 South 6th Street. In March 2009, the building took its present name.
The ranking of the building as the tallest in Minneapolis is in dispute. The IDS Center is usually said to be taller by one foot, even by the owners of Capella Tower. It was initially said to be built one foot shorter out of respect for the IDS Center; however, in 2005, it was revealed that contractors had surreptitiously added 14 inches (36 centimeters) of height to Capella, therefore making it taller than the main roof of IDS Center. In February 2005, the IDS counted a 16-foot-tall (5-meter) window washing garage built on its roof in 1979 as part of its actual height, making it 14 ft (4.3 m) taller than Capella Tower. This ambiguity between official measurements and public relations statements might be due in some part to the "halo" that extends out from the roof, which is apparently included in the building's official height (though this is unclear).
The IDS is taller on two measures. The IDS's communications spires add a significant amount of height making it 910 ft (280 m), and it remains the tallest building in Minneapolis if measured by number of stories (57 vs. 56; actually tied for first with neighbor Wells Fargo Center).
In March 2008, Capella Education Co., longtime occupant of the building and owner of the for-profit online Capella University, signed a lease that changed the name of the tower to Capella Tower. The new lease expands Capella's square footage in the building from 203,000 sq ft (18,900 m2) to about 400,000 sq ft (37,000 m2), making it the largest tenant in the building. The expanded facility houses all of the company's 1,150 downtown Minneapolis employees; as the online school does not have classrooms, the space houses administrative staff and faculty. The name change took place in March 2009.
The office building, designed by Pei, Cobb, Freed & Partners, is laid out on an L-shaped site with the 56-story tower connected to the 20-story Park Building by a corner winter garden. The building combines six-story cubes and various round towers which echo the different styles of buildings in downtown Minneapolis. The illuminated semicircle located atop the tower is not only decorative but also houses an antenna farm and communications network. This feature has given the building the nickname the "Halo Building".
First Bank Place officially opens with a grand celebration tonight. The 53-story skyscraper complex on 3rd Av. between 6th and 7th Sts., designed by architect James Freed of Pei, Cobb, Freed & Partners of New York, has been part of the downtown Minneapolis skyline for two years but the interior was just finished this month. The taller of its towers, on 6th St., has been occupied by First Bank System.