As Londoners watch the progress on the Shard, New Yorkers have their eye on the ever-growing new One World Trade Center known as the Freedom Tower.
On Tuesday, as a steel beam was lifted into place, the skyscraper became the tallest building in New York City, surpassing the height of the Empire State Building. Upon expected completion in 2013, the Freedom Tower will be the tallest building in the United States. Currently the Willis Tower (formerly the Sears Tower) in Chicago was designed by Fazlur Khan and Bruce Graham of Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill is the tallest having out-heighted the original World Trade Center with a height of 442 metres.
The Freedom Tower, designed by David Childs also of Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill, will ultimately reach a height of 417 metres, though with the clever placement of radio antenna, will officially have a height of 541.3 metres (exactly 1,776 feet as a nod to the signing of the Declaration of Independence). While the Freedom Tower is entering the ranks of the world’s tallest buildings, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai still “towers” over all other skyscrapers at a dizzying height of 830 metres.
This mega structure will be a mixed use facility offering 69 floors of office space as well as restaurants, broadcasting, and a three-story observation deck. One World Trade Center is part of a complex on the original site of the Twin Towers also including the National September 11 Memorial & Museum and two reflecting pools.
One World Trade Center is meant as a monument to the events of September 11, 2001 and all those affected while also standing proudly as a symbol of American triumph. The elegant design reflects its surroundings and the sun as a new beacon on the New York skyline.
Words: Emily Sack © 2012 ArtLyst
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