By The Urban Exploration Society
Standing at a staggering eighteen stories high, the State Office building dominates the Binghamton skyline, making every other structure look like a diminutive testament to smallness. How could any other structure even compete? I’ll tell you how. They don’t. Constructed in the late sixties/early seventies, The State Office Building occupies the space between Binghamton City Hall and the Edwin L. Crawford County Office Building to reflect the unity of each layer of Government that the city of Binghamton begrudgingly abides by. The late sixties brutalist architecture of the building is endemic of the Cold War geopolitical tensions that swept America throughout the twentieth century. Since I’ve already detailed its long history of human rights violations and child endangerment that have taken place within the walls of this structure in the first two parts, I’ll now be focusing on the impact that the State Office Building has had on the current residents of Broome county.
While getting lunch with some friends at Skylark Diner, I asked one of them, “Have you ever been to the State Office Building?”
“Yeah” she said, “One of my stepdads took me there.” So, then I asked, “How was it?” and she said, “It was nice.”
A little while later I met up with her mother at the Vestal laundromat to ask her if she had ever been to the State Office Building. She said “Yeah, I have. That place is really nice it’s got like thirteen or fourteen floors.”
That night I was discussing the State Office Building at a small get together in Kirkwood, and as it turns out one of my friends used to deliver food to the state office building. He told me: “Yeah, I delivered food there for the place that I used to work at. The security looks really tight but honestly they’ll let pretty much anybody in as long as they’ve got a reason to be there.” Hearing that was the final straw. I needed to see the inside. I decided that I’d head over and scope the place out first thing tomorrow morning.
The next day I slept until noon and instead of checking out the State Office Building, I just decided to meet-up at City Light Coffee to hang out. City Light Coffee is a cool coffee shop that is run by City Church. They give away free coffee to College students and 100% of their profits go to helping global mission projects against human trafficking and ending extreme poverty. If you haven’t already been there, I’d highly recommend it. The food and coffee are great, and the atmosphere is fantastic. It’s a wonderful place to study for midterms, hang out with friends, or even just to surf the web with their free Wi-Fi. Honestly, it’s the best coffee shop in town and the coffee is free! Stop by anytime, pick up a caramel macchiato and fight human trafficking at the same time.
By the time I was ready to leave, I had completely lost interest in investigating the State Office Building, but my friend Isaac insisted that we at least try to get a tour. As we entered the lobby, I realized that I didn’t have a plan for what I’d even say when I got to the front desk, but Isaac immediately said “Hi. We’re with Binghamton Review and we’re writing an article on the infrastructure of Broome County and we were wondering if we could take a look around the State Office Building and maybe take a few pictures from the top floor. Is there anyone we can contact who can give us a tour of the building or at least show us the top floor?” The Security guard at the front desk proceeded to give us the phone number of someone who works for the Office of General Services. We called him and he seemed perfectly willing to give us a tour but after five minutes in the lobby I decided I had seen enough. As we left Isaac told me how upset he was to find out that the State Office Building only has eighteen floors because apparently, he had been telling people that it was twenty stories. I assured him that that’s not an egregious difference and that I doubt anyone would even care about how many floors the State Office Building has.