The first tenant moved its employees into the new World Trade in New York City on Nov. 3, 2014. It was 13 years since the tragic events of September 11, 2001, which took down the World Trade Center Twin Towers in Lower Manhattan. The site of much heartbreak, scrutiny and controversy, the new tower is now open for business. Here are 10 things you didn’t know about the new World Trade Center.
Sources: NYTimes.com, OneWTC.com, BBC.com, HuffingtonPost.co.uk, Gothamist.com, Telegraph.co.uk, ABCNews.Go.com
Statistics are quite impressive. The new building contains enough glass in its exterior to cover 20 professional football fields. The tower itself is made of as much steel as 20,000 cars. It has enough concrete in it to build a four-inch sidewalk from New York to Chicago — about 790 miles (1271 kilometers).
Having gone exceeded its estimated cost several times over, the tower finished construction with a price tag of $3.9 billion. The tower was originally scheduled to open in 2006 but suffered serious delays due to financing and design, pushing its opening date back eight years.
With its attached spire, One World Trade stands at 1,776 feet (541 meters), the tallest in the western hemisphere. The tower is 104 stories tall with a three-floor observatory at the top that is set to open in the spring of 2015. The height is significant — 1776 was the year of the U.S. revolution against colonial rule, and the year the Declaration of Independence was signed. The original Twin Towers were more than 400 feet shorter than the new tower.
Irish artist Marcus Robinson spent more than 2,000 days over eight years filming the progress as the new tower rose again against the New York City skyline. The film employs time-lapse photography to embody the spirit of renewal and resilience in the One World Trade project.
Condé Nast, the publishing company that includes magazines such as Vanity Fair and Vogue, was the first company to move its employees into their new offices in One World Trade. Sixty percent of the building’s office space has been leased to companies and agencies such as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection and Vantone Industrial Co.
The Port Authority, a government agency controlled by the governors of New York and New Jersey, is responsible for much of the transportation to and from New York City. It is also the owner of the new 1 WTC building, as well as the 16-acre site it sits on. Five percent of the building’s equity was sold to the Durst Organization, a private real estate company, for approximately $100 million to help with the management of the building.
Steve Plate worked in the North Tower of the World Trade Center, but missed his train on the day of the 9/11 terror attacks after taking his son to school. Since then, he has been with the 1 WTC project, helping oversee the engineering of the new tower.
There are several instances where the new One World Trade building draws inspiration from the former Twin Towers. The lobby uses white marble taken from the lobby of the former World Trade Center. The central spire is visually reminiscent of the original building. The building’s 200-foot footprint is nearly identical to the footprints of the original Twin Towers.
Given the understandable concern about rebuilding the towers, extra security features were added to ensure the safety of One World Trade and its tenants. The construction includes a reinforced concrete base, pressurized stairwells, blast-resistant windows, biological and chemical filters through its ventilation system, and more. Security measures such as vehicle screening, surveillance cameras, and video-analytic computer software can detect potential threats.
Steps away from One World Trade are the 9/11 Memorial and Museum, including the north pool – a 30-foot-deep water wall at the base of the North Tower. An official for the organization that helped to develop the tower, Jordan Barowitz, said, “The building is open for business. It’s a beautiful building, it’s a historic building, but it’s an office building and it’s open for business.”