The tools that they had back in the 30's aren't even in the same ballpark as the tools that we have today and yet it stands still today as one of the world's tallest buildings. If you were to ask me back then how high we would be by the year 2000 I would have probably said at least 250 stories and yet we aren't anywhere near that mark.
The Empire State Building was completed in 410 days this was including Sundays and holidays in all it took about 7,000,000 man-hours to build this massive building. The expected cost of the Empire State Building was estimated to be about 50,000,000 but thanks to the depression it only cost 24,718,000, which was less then half of the original price tag. Then after you added in the land the price it jumps up to 40,948,900 (Empire State Building facts).
The Empire State Building has its foundation placed at 55 feet below ground. The basement is 35 feet blow ground that's down there. But the lobby is 47 feet above sea level, so I guess that you don't have to worry about flooding very much (Empire State Building facts). This building was built so soundly that it doesn't sway but it actually gives in high winds about 0.25 inches off center. With wind that is at about 110 mph it