Ground Zero October 2013

Researching on the Library of Congress web site I came across this 2009 photograph by Carol Highsmith showing construction of Ground Zero in Lower Manhattan which got me wondering how much of the original design is complete.

Gound Zero under contruction, New York City 2009.  Photo by Carol Highsmith/Library of Congress
Gound Zero under contruction, New York City 2009. Photo by Carol Highsmith/Library of Congress

During construction two symbolic beams of light celebrated the anniversary of 9/11:

Ground Zero lights to memorize 9/11
Ground Zero lights to memorize 9/11

So here is an artist’s rendering of the four skyscrapers designed for the site:

Artist's concept of four main buildings designed for World Trade Center site.
Artist’s concept of four main buildings designed for World Trade Center site.

1 World Trade Center – scheduled to be completed 2013

Originally called Freedom Tower this building it is now being referred to as One World Trade Center, or Tower 1.  The central skyscraper is 1,368 feet (104 stories), with an enormous 408-foot steel spire antenna. It can take the blast from a truck bomb or the fiery impact of a jet airplane — and yet, at 1,776 feet in height, the supertower rises higher than the terror-hit twin towers that once stood on the site.

On May 10, 2013, the final tower sections were in place bring the estimated total construction cost of $3.8 billion.

Looking a Tower 1 in background.  Photo:  George Dieblod/Blend Images/Getty Images
Looking a Tower 1 in background. Photo: George Dieblod/Blend Images/Getty Images

2 World Trade Center – incomplete

At 78 stories (1,254 feet), Tower 2 was slated to be the second tallest building at the New York World Trade Center. With a dazzling diamond-shape crest, 2 World Trade Center also promised to be one of the most interesting buildings at Ground Zero. However, a troubled economy has delayed construction. The near future is uncertain for Norman Foster’s skyscraper.

Artist's drawing of Tower 2
Artist’s drawing of Tower 2

3 World Trade Center – to be completed in 2014 

3 World Trade Center is a bold design by Pritzker Prize winning architect Richard Rogers. Rising eighty stories, 3 WTC will include 2.8 million square feet of space spread across 53 floors and five base building floors.  Tower 3 will have five levels of retail at and below grade. Its safety systems will exceed New York City building code and Port Authority of New York and New Jersey requirements, and it will seek to achieve the LEED Gold standard for energy efficiency.

Artist's drawing of Tower 3 & 4
Artist’s drawing of Tower 3 & 4

4 World Trade Center – incomplete

WTC Tower 4 is an elegant, minimalist design. Each corner of the skyscraper rises to a different height, with the highest elevation at 977 feet. Japanese architect Fumihiko Maki designed 4 World Trade Center to complete the spiral configuration of towers on the World Trade Center site.

Tower 4 Credit: Joe Woolhead Courtesy of Silverstein Properties
Tower 4 Credit: Joe Woolhead Courtesy of Silverstein Properties

To watch a Time-Lapse video of the construction from 2004-2013 go to:

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