In less than a minute, the old American Airlines headquarters was reduced to rubble.
Six buildings that were part of the Fort Worth-based carrier’s headquarters in the 1980s, south of Dallas-Fort Worth Airport, were demolished on Friday to clear the way for a new corporate campus.
Hundreds of employees gathered on top of a parking garage at American’s current headquarters, about a mile away, to watch the implosion. Executive Vice President Elise Eberwein, along with two employees who won a drawing, flipped the switch to set off explosives for the implosion.
The company used 300 pounds of shaped charges and 100 pounds of dynamite to demolish the six buildings that stood three to five stories tall. The headquarters was first used in 1983; former Chief Executive Bob Crandall’s office was on the fourth floor of one of the buildings and overlooked the creek.
American moved to its current headquarters on Amon Carter Boulevard in 1990. The old headquarters building was subleased but has been vacant since 2009.
The demolition went as planned though it appeared that some of the buildings were partially upright after the implosion.
“That’s Bob Crandall saying, ‘You’re not taking me down,’ ” Eberwein joked. The company noted that the buildings were left partially standing to protect nearby trees and will be cleared later with the rest of the debris.