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Unread Sep 8th, 2012, 02:44 am
susan53 susan53 is offline
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Default Re: definite article before BUILDING

Complex place names in English which incorporate what could be a common noun (bulding, hotel, restaurant, etc) are torn between two rules. The first is that names in English don't usually have an article:

He works for Microsoft in Washington.

Following that rule you get complex place names such as :

He stayed in Queens Hotel in Acacia Road in Crystal Palace
We visited Westminster Abbey.
They're refurbishing Charing Cross Station.
She lives in Buckingham Palace.

The second that a common noun with specific reference takes the definite article :

We stayed in the best hotel in the town.

following that rule you get :

We stayed in the Clarendon Hotel in the High Street.
We visited the British Museum.
We went to the top of the Empire State Building.

Some of these nouns tend to go one way or the other, while some (like Hotel) are frequently found in both forms. All the examples I've found with "building" use the article, and I can't imagine it being used without, so I'd advise you always to use it :

We saw the Chrysler Building.
He works in the Swiss Re Building.
The Biochemistry Department is located in the Henry Wellcome Building

but I'm sure there are counter-examples out there somewhere
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