Asterisk denotes entries on real places.
Rand chose New York because real-life skyscrapers were being constructed there, and the chance for conflict would therefore be high. The conflict between Peter Keating and his old-fashioned style and Roark and his modern design methods drives the story. The buildings they design together reveal this conflict.
Cortlandt homes. Low-income housing project that Roark designs with Keating’s support. Even though Keating claims credit for the project, Roark sees it as a way to design something of which he can be proud. Throughout the book Roark finds himself at odds with the established style of design. When Ellsworth Toohey alters Roark’s design while Roark is on vacation, Roark decides to dynamite the structure and is arrested. This event is the prelude to the final courtroom battle and Roark’s (and Rand’s) grand statement about Objectivism.
Aquitania Hotel. Establishment that Kent Lansing hires Roark to build. The Aquitania represents Roark and his attempt to develop a new type of architecture, while fighting Ellsworth Toohey and others who want nothing to do with it. Eventually building is halted for legal reasons, but Lansing promises to complete it. Roark finally finishes it himself.
Stoddard Temple. Nonsectarian building that Roark agrees to build, not knowing that Toohey wanted Roark to build it. When Roark is finished, Toohey criticizes it in a New York Banner article. Instead of being a triumph, the temple becomes a disgrace, and Roark finds himself trying desperately to land new architecture projects. Even so, Roark continues to believe in his design and develop his style. Rand has given her protagonist a larger-than-life philosophy, but she had an even larger goal in mind–bringing Objectivist philosophy to the people.
*Connecticut. When Roark learns that the design for the Manhattan Bank Building project is his, with minor modifications, he quits architecture and moves to a quarry in Connecticut. The mansion where Dominique Francon lives is in sharp contrast to the busy life of New York City: fast-living versus slow-living.