In a contemporary urban context that produced so many generic, unadorned glass and concrete skyscrapers, Becket's skillful modeling of precast concrete forms produced a unique high-rise building, unlike any of the 30 other structures of this type built in Hartford in this period.
Hartford enjoyed a population surge in the middle part of the twentieth century, fueled mainly by immigration, reaching a near-record high of 164,000. The population explosion resulted in overcrowding and a trend towards suburban migration. As a result, the Hartford Redevelopment Agency secured federal planning funds in 1952 for Constitution Plaza which was designed to be the modern gateway to the city, partly to help businesses remain in the city and subsequently their employees. Some of the state's biggest banks and companies, including the Hartford National and Connecticut Bank and Trust, joined the board as principal tenants at Constitution Plaza and helped fund its construction.
The agreement by the collection of businesses to invest in the plaza inspired Hartford National Bank officials in 1962 to agree to build a new bank on the site. Completion of the building occurred five years later, in 1967; the dedication ceremony included a parade and the Hartford National (News) published a Special Dedication Day Edition newspaper.
Becket's use of a precast concrete wall system in the design of the skyscraper differed from other downtown buildings. Instead of the typical angular modeling favored in other prefabricated structures, Becket designed the Hartford Trust and Bank building with smoothly rounded, castings, which utilized the arched form in a curvilinear manner. The arch located at the top of the 1,900 windows serve as an accompaniment to the flatter, sloping curve found at the window sills below, which provide depth to the building.
Today, the building is known as 777 Main Street and functions as a residential building. The LEED Platinum® certified building boasts of 336 solar panels on its roof and a 400-kilowatt fuel cell that generates clean, combustion-free renewable energy to the residents among other sustainable building features.