Eleven years after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, New York is slowly getting back on its feet with the development of the new World Trade Center complex in Lower Manhattan.
One World Trade Center, a new 105-story commercial building and the biggest part of the complex, is the tallest building in New York, and will be completed in 2013.
“A new building can allow the families to move on,” said CSUN student Daniel Zuniga, freshman business marketing major. “They can start over again and strive for a better future.”
The World Trade Center complex originally contained seven World Trade Center buildings, including the Twin Towers. After the terrorist attacks, when Al-Qaeda members crashed two Boeing commercial airplanes into the Twin Towers, the entire complex was destroyed.
The attacks killed almost 3,000 people, including firefighters and NYPD officers. Both towers collapsed less than an hour after the attacks, crushing tower three, which was located in between them. Tower seven, after being hit on the south side with debris from the South Tower, collapsed a few hours later. The remaining three centers were damaged beyond repair and later demolished.
“It’s symbolic to rebuild the complex,” said Diba Yadegari, CSUN professor of civil engineering and applied mechanics. “While there may be some resentment, we need to remember and learn from those tragic events.
It’ll unite us and make us a stronger country.”
As of April 30, One World Trade Center surpassed the Empire State building at 1,271 feet. Once the building is completed, a 408-foot spire will top it off making the building 1,776 feet, which represents the year 1776, when America signed the Declaration of Independence.
“The new design of the tower is magnificent,” said Yadegari. “It has a strong core throughout the building and a very thick, high strength concrete base.”
During the base’s construction, many New Yorkers were concerned that it looked unwelcoming and resembled a war bunker, according to Yadegari.
“The base does look unwelcoming, but the designers had no choice,” Yadegari said. “It can withstand pretty much anything, and it will keep the building up and intact. It has a dual core system.”
The Twin Towers, which were built in the 1970s, were created without an interior elevator core.
“Another way to put it would be that the buildings lacked a spine,” said Yadegari.
Construction of the new tower began in 2006, but hit problems with initial funding between the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and development company, Silverstein Properties.
Silverstein Properties and the Port Authority reached an agreement in early 2007 and the building is estimated to cost $3.8 billion.
New York real estate developer and investor Larry Silverstein, CEO of Silverstein Properties, financed $1 billion. Another $1 billion was funded by the Port Authority through the sale of bonds. The state of New York also provided $250 million.
The remaining amount was financed by Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, a company created in 2006 by former New York Gov. George Pataki and former Mayor Rudy Giuliani. LMDC was created solely to provide federal funding to restore Lower Manhattan.
The Port Authority, an interstate agency that maintains the entire port of New York and New Jersey for trade and business, now owns the new building. Port Authority’s headquarters will be in the new Four World Trade Center, a 72-story building that is also scheduled for completion in 2013.
The One World Trade Center was designed by David M. Childs, consulting design planner of Skidmore Owings & Merrill, a New York based architectural and engineering firm. Architect Daniel Libeskind created the renderings of the building and the original master plan.
Two World Trade Center and Three World Trade Center should be complete by 2015, and Five World Trade Center will be completed by 2020. Seven World Trade Center was rebuilt and finished in May 2006 by Silverstein Properties. Six World Trade Center is still pending confirmation for construction.
“It was a good idea to do one tower instead of two,” said CSUN student Kimberly Prado, senior English major.
“Those awful memories can be erased with new symbols of strength and hope.”
An 8-acre memorial was created within the complex named The National September 11 Memorial, which opened last year on the 10-year anniversary. The memorial contains two reflective pools where the Twin Towers once stood with the names of all the victims, and includes the names of six victims from the World Trade Center bombing in 1993.
“The memorial is a great idea for the victims’ families and visitors,” said Zuniga, who had visited Ground Zero during a middle school field trip in 2008 and saw the memorial during construction.
A museum, which was scheduled to open today, has been pushed back to open sometime in 2013 because of concerns from the victims’ families over photos of the terrorist hijackers being displayed. The museum is designed to look like a torn down building that is still standing.
Much of what remained from the Twin Towers will be featured in museum exhibits. Both the memorial and museum are run by a non-profit organization.