Skip to comments.Redesign yields heavily protected New York City Freedom Tower
Posted on 07/08/2005 3:49:03 PM PDT by Libloather
Redesign yields heavily protected Freedom Tower
Last modified Thursday, June 30, 2005 12:27 PM PDT
This artist rendering shows a night view from Hudson River of the updated design for the 'Freedom Tower' for the World Trade Center Site in New York, unveiled on June 29, 2005. The centerpiece building was redesigned due to security concerns presented by the New York Police Department. (Reuters - Handout)
NEW YORK (AP) Hurriedly redesigned to make it less vulnerable to a truck bomb, ground zero's Freedom Tower will lose its distinctive, twisting look but will be the safest skyscraper in the world, officials said Wednesday.
The redrawn tower will be slimmer, straighter and more conventional, it will be set farther back from the street, and it will be placed atop a mammoth, 200-foot concrete-and-metal pedestal designed to repel explosions.
Because of the changes, the 20-ton granite cornerstone that was laid with great fanfare by Gov. George Pataki last Fourth of July will have to be moved.
The original design for the tower that will rise on the site of the destroyed World Trade Center was sent back to the drawing board last month after the police department raised concerns that it would be too vulnerable to truck bombs.
The new design is intended to meet the security standards set for U.S. embassies, making it the world's safest high-rise building, said lead architect David Childs.
"This building is as robust and as strong as any I've ever been in,'' he said.
The original design had a twisting, asymmetrical shape that was meant to evoke the outstretched arm of the Statue of Liberty it will overlook. The new design will be a more rectangular shape with some of the square edges shaved off, resembling a faceted version of one of the twin towers.
Construction is expected to begin next year, with steel rising above ground level in 2007 and completion scheduled for 2010.
Like the World Trade Center, the tower will reach 1,362 feet into the sky. But an illuminated spire, meant to evoke the Statue of Liberty's torch, will stretch the building to the symbolic 1,776 feet envisioned in the original Freedom Tower design. The spire will change color and cast alternating beams of light to the sky and to the horizon.
The base will be constructed of 3-foot-thick concrete, clad in a shimmering metal curtain that will afford additional blast protection and also give the impression of movement and light. Above the 20-story concrete base, the building will be sheathed in plastic-laminated glass for increased resistance to explosions.
The building will be set back an average of 90 feet from West Street, the major thoroughfare along the Hudson River. The original design placed the building just 25 feet from the six-lane highway.
"The new Freedom Tower design incorporates standards the police department had sought to protect the building against bomb blasts, which our counterterrorism experts agree present one of the greatest threats to such iconic structures,'' Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said in a statement.
The need to set the building farther back from the street forced the architect to reshape the base and abandon the asymmetrical design.
As in the original design, stairwells, elevators, communications systems and water mains will be protected in a 3-foot-thick concrete and steel core. It will have extra fireproofing, biological and chemical air filters, extra-wide emergency stairs, a dedicated staircase for firefighters and "areas of refuge'' on each floor.
The new design also retains plans for 2.6 million square feet of office space on 70 floors, a restaurant and observation decks.
On the Net:
Lower Manhattan Development Corp.: http://renewnyc.com
This photo released by the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation in New York Wednesday, June 29, 2005, depicts a model of the redesigned Freedom Tower by architect Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP, as seen from the southwest. (AP Photo/ESTO, Jock Pottle)
Architect David Childs speaks at the unveiling of the updated design for the 'Freedom Tower' for the World Trade Center Site in New York, June 29, 2005. The centerpiece building was redesigned due to security concerns presented by the New York police department. REUTERS/Chip East
A model is displayed at the unveiling of the updated design for the 'Freedom Tower' for the World Trade Center Site in New York, June 29, 2005. The centerpiece building was redesigned due to security concerns presented by the New York Police Department. Photo by Chip East/Reuters
This artist rendering shows an aerial view from East River of the updated design for the 'Freedom Tower' for the World Trade Center Site in New York which was unveiled on June 29, 2005. The centerpiece building was redesigned due to security concerns presented by the New York Police Department. (REUTERS/Courtesy of Skidmore, Owings and Merrill LLP)
A model showing the redesigned base is displayed at the unveiling of the updated design for the 'Freedom Tower' for the World Trade Center Site in New York, June 29, 2005. The centerpiece building was redesigned due to security concerns presented by the New York Police Department. (Chip East/Reuters)
Graphic shows Freedom tower redesign. (AP Graphic)
Sorry, I didn't even read the article....
I don't like it---I am one of the ones that thinks the Twin Towers need to be built back.
A better idea; why don't we just spare the money and build a large 5 story municipal parking lot on the WTC site? I am sure that the Wall Street crowd would love it, the city would make money, and we wouldn't have to build this latest version of a POS.
I'm with you. The towers should be rebuilt exactly as before except much stronger and a full story higher.
Ugly, and out of place. If they're going to build it, they might as well change the name of the city to Houston.
They can build what they want, so long as it's funded by the private sector.
It Sucks !
I`m with the Donald, K.I.S.S.,
Keep It Simple Stupid and rebuild the originals,except stronger,add beams that would shear off and cut anything that slammed into it.Coat ALL the beams with asbestos,don`t stop at the 64th floor this time.
I think we should build a large mosque on the site, to show the peaceful Muslims that if we offended them with our foreign policy, that we are very sorry, and please don't attack us again.
Build two and I'd say not bad.
But the Trump plan is better.
So...um...the bottom 20 stories won't have any windows?
I like it. A vast improvement over the initial proposal. And no matter what was proposed, the same knee-jerk whiners would be moaning about it.
Built back, but bigger. (How's that for alliteration.)
Much better than, Great Taste, Less Filling!!!
Why does it have to evoke anything? Just build a building that doesn't try to be something it isn't..
Like the World Trade Center, the tower will reach 1,362 feet into the sky. But an illuminated spire, meant to evoke the Statue of Liberty's torch
Something tells me this will be incredibly ugly.
I liked the original Freedom Tower design a whole lot better than this syringe. The old one at least matched well with the Statue of Liberty. This one looks like any other skyscraper anywhere except its got a "we are scared" strip along the bottom of it.
It should survive any exterior explosion just fine -- any interior explosion will be successfully contained, blasting 1576 feet of skyscraper 4 miles into the air.
Is it economically profitable? Why build it at all?
Has a workable plan been approved to destroy the building safely at the end of its useful life?
More important than that, though, is that there simply is no market in lower Manhattan for that much office space. In fact, I'll be very surprised if the building described in this article is completed by 2010. Larry Silverstein, the developer who owns the rights to build on this site, is in the process of re-building 7 World Trade Center -- the 52-story building at the north end of the site that also came down on 9/11. He has yet to sign a single tenant to a lease in that building.
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