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  #1  
Old Posted Mar 12, 2009, 8:43 PM
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Smile NEW YORK | What do you think of the new WTC?

As tragic as it was no lose part of the NYC skyline, I think that it really is time to move on from the past. As such, I think that while not a iconic design, the new WTC that is currently under construction is the best choice for New York.

I loved the Twin Towers as much as anyone, but architecturally, they weren't that great. Yes, they were efficient, but from the skyline they were really just giant gray boxes. Now we are getting beautiful glass buildings that (blasphemy ahead) will look better on the skyline and provide the type of office space that tenants want (columnless, glassy, modern, and with good views). The only thing the OWTC had of those was the first one.

Also this plan has... office space. Dan Libenskind's on the other hand was a glorified spire. And the Twin Towers II: Do you really think anyone would want to work in those? I don't think so, and by adding wider windows and simultaneously keeping the same basic structure it makes for a very odd-looking building that just looks like a mutated OWTC, which is not what people want to see.

I'm sure many of you will disagree, but that's why I created this thread:

What do with had been done with the site?

Feel free to bring up any of the other designs.

Some pics:
The current plan:

Old plan:

Ew.
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  #2  
Old Posted Mar 13, 2009, 3:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Duffstuff129 View Post
What do with had been done with the site?
Assuming that means "what do you wish had been done with the site?"

Ironically, the current site plan goes right along with what I said should happen from the beginning. Firstly, there was always going to be a memorial - you knew that - it was only a question of where and what size. I knew that the most logical location for the memorial was where the "footprints" of the towers were.

Initially, it was thought there wouldn't be anything more than 50 stories built at the site. But gradually a general awarness of the public's appetite (and demand) for something tall to be built at the site came into focus. I think this came to a head at the "Listening to the City" event at the Javits Center (July 2002). I still have a little paperwork from going there.

Six site plans were revealed before the event, and at each table the pros and cons of each were discussed.


mri200.com

My favorite at that time was for the site plan that followed what I wanted to see most, MEMORIAL PLAZA:

http://www.thecityreview.com/newwtc.html









Another of the 6 plans, MEMORIAL GARDENS, showed an early prototype of what would become a design element of the Freedom Tower.




But ultimately, those early plans being just massings of potential development - with no pretty renderins for the public to drool over - forced the LMDC to go back to the drawing boards. At the end of the year however, they came back in force - this time with renderings and more specific detail than they wanted (the architectural teams were told not to touch the memorial space, which would have a competition of its own). Larry Silverstein meanwhile kept his own architect, David Childs, on standby.

Those second wave of plans can be viewed here:
http://www.renewnyc.com/plan_des_dev...ns/default.asp

My favorite of that group was Norman Foster's "'kissing towers", 1,764 feet tall.


















___________________________________

Meanwhile, in the background of all of this was the urgent need of the area's television broadcasters to replace the broadcast antenna that was lost at 1 WTC. Early on, it was not all that clear that anything approaching the height the broadcasters wanted - 2,000 ft - would be built at the WTC site. The broadcasters had to search for a site within a 3 mile radius, alternating between Governor's Island (Bloomberg objected), Jersey City, and finally Bayonne, New Jersey. There were various designs for that proposal, including one with an observation deck. But they eventually settled on a 2,000 ft monster...


metropolismag.como

In September 2002, after an expression of interest by MTVA tower planners, the rendering was produced to illustrate how the tower could appear on The Peninsula. As specified by the MTVA, the tower is crowned with 3 antenna masts. Broadcaster's call this antenna arrangement a "candelabra". The tower must accommodate an unprecedented number of antennas at an optimum height of from 1800 feet (for maximum coverage) to 2049 feet (maximum height above sea level permitted by FAA regulations): Hence the three masts on a circular platform.
http://gjhigginsarchitect.com/bayonne.html

A stripped down version of the original plan, still 2,000 ft


Read more on the Bayonne/Jersey City fight for the tower
http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpag...pagewanted=all
http://www.allbusiness.com/north-ame...1017707-1.html

_____________________________________________


Back at the WTC site planning, it came down to two finalists: the design for the World Cultural Center




And Daniel Libeskind's Memorial Gardens



Governor Pataki's LMDC was ready to select the WCC as the winning site plan, but Pataki stepped in and decided that "they" would instead choose Daniel Libeskinds plan. The basis for this was Libeskind's treatment of the memorial space, which ironically wasn't supposed to be included in the design elements.








Libeskind's site plan called for a spiral of towers (similar to the Memorial Plaza from the original site planning) with the tallest tower standing at the northwest corner of the site - with the spire reaching a specific height of 1,776 feet, marking the beginning of America's independence. This ultimately led to Pataki giving the building the name of Freedom Tower.

________________________________________


Now that some serious consideration to height was back on the table, the MTVA (Metropolitan Television Alliance - the broadcasters) began to look at the WTC again. Over the next year developer Larry Silverstein and his architect David Childs (who also designed 7 WTC) worked with the broadcasters and Guy Nordenson on a tower that would reach the 2,000 ft height the broadcasters wanted. David Childs decided that he would mark Libeskind's 1,776 ft with an observation deck at that height.



http://www.nordenson.com/project.php?id=5&img=8&l=name









__

Daniel Libeskind was outraged at the height of this tower (the other towers had yet to be revealed, but all were considered to be under 1,000 ft at the time). Libeskind felt that this tower would overwhelm his site plan and didn't relate to the Statue of Liberty and it's raised torch they way he wanted it to. Governor Pataki agreed, and forced a compromise between the architects, which resulted in this:


danzfamily.com


moonbattery.com



______________________________________

The final chapter would come down to the NYPD, which had been trying to call attention to security concerns about the base of the tower. The tower was aligned along West Street (Libeskind wanted it aligned with the slurry wall) which the NYPD thought made it an easier target. Also, there was too much glass. The result was that the Freedom Tower had to be streamlined, the base made more secure, and the office space located further away from the street. The result was a tower which came close in height and design to the original WTC towers. David Childs decided to mark these points specifically, and it's pretty much what we have under construction today:




There was no such drama with the design of the other towers.




To make a long story short, I am pleased with what will be the new World Trade Center. Could the designs have been better? Perhaps. Should the towers have been taller? Realistically, probably not. Most office towers these days won't go much higher. But the bottom line is that the skyline is being restored, and we'll have a much more friendly WTC at street level. At the same time, we will get a memorial and a memorial museum.....
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Last edited by NYguy; Mar 13, 2009 at 3:48 AM.
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  #3  
Old Posted Mar 13, 2009, 6:22 PM
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I have to say, I think we all made out good with what we are getting, and couldn't think of anything better. The towers all work well with eachother, and there is no question that at street level, the WTC will be more of a ped. friendly place.

Personally, I liked almost everthing about the original, from the large escalator bank that took people down to the PATH, to that large overpass that connected the Customs House to the Winter Garden. Little things like that I will miss the most, but overall I am pleased with what will come to be.
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Old Posted Mar 14, 2009, 1:29 PM
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As good as the new WTC may be, it could never have the same powerful impact that the old WTC had,
especially before the construction of the world financial center, like in this pic :



This pic for me is just so New York, I grew up picturing New York City like this.
The towers were so iconic in the 1980's and 1990's, even more than the Statue of Liberty or Empire State Building I think.
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Old Posted Mar 14, 2009, 2:19 PM
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I absolutely agree entirely, though I do very much support the current WTC plans.
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Old Posted Mar 14, 2009, 2:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nantais View Post
This pic for me is just so New York, I grew up picturing New York City like this.
For me its just the opposite. I hate that view of the original WTC towers for the same reason many people disliked the layout of the WTC. You can see just how apart they are from everything, like two giants that just stepped up out of the river. New York's towers, especially the taller ones, are supposed to be a mass of spires and rooftops. The construction of the World Financial Center and the rest of Battery Park City did a lot to counter this.

JRABX



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Old Posted Mar 14, 2009, 4:13 PM
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Out of all the proposals for the new site I like the one they decided to go with and are building now best.
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Old Posted Mar 14, 2009, 10:21 PM
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I really like the new WTC, especially tower #2 and #3. I was not that fond of some of the older proposals. However, even though I like the new WTC, I will always miss the old iconic twin towers.
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Old Posted Mar 14, 2009, 10:52 PM
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I was more taken with the THINK proposal than the Libeskind entry - but both were an improvement over the original twins IMHO - the twins had some visual power from a distance but were inhuman things to interact with.

I wasn't particularly happy with how Childs strong-armed himself into the project.
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Old Posted Mar 15, 2009, 12:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wrabbit View Post
I was more taken with the THINK proposal than the Libeskind entry
At the time, I too was more in favor of THINK's over Libeskind's. But when both went back for modification, THINKS "towers" were basically stripped and reduced about 300 ft in height. Everything was hopeless at the time, but you knew that Silverstein (along with Childs) was the wildcard.


Quote:
Originally Posted by wrabbit View Post
I wasn't particularly happy with how Childs strong-armed himself into the project.
That's not the way it was at all. David Childs was there from the beginning, he was always going to design the buildings. Specific designs of the towers were only given in the second round to try and satisfy public appetite, but it was selecting a site plan that was the goal of the process. The Freedom Tower is going to be 1,776 ft because it marks a specific point of American history. David Childs had other ideas on how to mark that, but Governor Pataki agreed with Libeskind that it should echo the State of Liberty's raised torch.




Pataki himself became so involved in the Freedom Tower's design that it led to this cartoon in the NY Post...




Bug even my favorite of the group, Foster's design, would have been altered somewhat to accomodate the broadcasters who are moving back to the site.

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Old Posted Mar 15, 2009, 12:36 AM
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I think equally as important to the discussion of the new WTC is the street level environment.
I don't think many people will argue that this is not an improvement.














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Old Posted Mar 15, 2009, 2:49 AM
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^
That second rendering is just sheer beauty, with the Transit Hub soaring over the street. Love that.

Towers 2, 3, and 4 really look like they've always belonged there, to me. It looks like they will be very well integrated with the old streetscape.
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Old Posted Mar 15, 2009, 3:28 AM
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I personally think the main tower should have been a lot bigger than they are making it. As I understand it they limited how tall its going to be based on the fear of another terrorist attack. They should have simply improved the construction techniques and built it twice as high as the previous WTC.

Doing anything less is acknowledging that the terrorists can shape our skylines at there leisure.
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Old Posted Mar 15, 2009, 11:57 AM
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As I understand it they limited how tall its going to be based on the fear of another terrorist attack.
That's not right either. The WTC will be a target regardless of the height. The FT is the height that it is (1,776 ft) because it marks the beginning of America's independence (also why it was given the name of Freedom Tower). It was conceived as a 70-story office tower with a spire beside it that reached 1,776 ft. The office space would have topped out around 950-975 ft. That gradually got higher due to the demands put on the Freedom Tower. The base was heightened for security reasons eventually putting the tower on par with the original Twins. But the main reason the tower isn't much higher than it is is because it's an office tower. No hotel or condos at the top. Even if it made sense to put office space higher, there is a limited amount of space given to each tower. So, where before there were 2 supertalls, there will now be 3 supertalls and a near supertall.
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Old Posted Mar 15, 2009, 12:06 PM
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I think the final design of Freedom tower is appropriate as symbol of New York again together ESB. The design is simple, reflects the old appearances blocks of WTC, but updated in shape volume with spire atop. This final design is not so crazy the earliers ones, but seems very plausible as unique in world again. And this new design is already so famous as the old 2, not even concluded the building. After that will get much more reputancy with time-to-time the knowledgement in real and in use.

The only criticism part I have, is due the fact of preserving the memory basements of the other 2 ones, destroyed, and to be like a gentle water falls quiet and solenely memorial, this took too much space as park in the site, pushing too much the Freedom tower very close other smaller buildings, so too close and next to them. It should have more space in between for an huge tower of 500m like that.
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Old Posted Mar 15, 2009, 6:25 PM
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I remember when I first saw a picture of the OWTC when i was probably four. Even then I thought they were amazing, because they were so massive, and HUGELY tall, and I fell in love with them. I never did get to see them in person, and I hope to see the NWTC when it opens. I doubt they will be as powerful an icon as the OWTC, though.
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Old Posted Mar 15, 2009, 7:28 PM
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.....
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Old Posted Mar 17, 2009, 8:56 PM
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^ LOL, I still love that cartoon.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MKmillenium View Post
this took too much space as park in the site, pushing too much the Freedom tower very close other smaller buildings, so too close and next to them. It should have more space in between for an huge tower of 500m like that.
I think, as a New York tower, it should be very close to other skyscrapers. For example, when you look at Shanghai and the Jin Mao, WFC, and the new tower, they all stand out from their surroundings, like skyscraper islands. The new WTC really tries to reconnect to the street. It's what the great towers like the ESB and the Chrysler do. To me, that makes the taller towers that much more impressive. I believe the memorial itself will have more of a Bryant Park feel (though not with the same activities).
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Old Posted Mar 17, 2009, 9:05 PM
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Originally Posted by NYguy View Post
David Childs decided that he would mark Libeskind's 1,776 ft with an observation deck at that height.

David Childs plans for the Freedom Tower that were moving forward.

http://renewnyc.com/content/pdfs/WTC...inal_Scope.pdf
(page 8)


The northwest quadrant would be the location of the 1776 Freedom Tower (with an observation deck at 1,776 feet and a broadcast antennae reaching 2,100 feet), Heroes Park, office space, ground floor retail, and the performing arts center (see Figure 4). Trucks (and buses) would enter the complex from Vesey Street at Washington Street or from Liberty Street at West Street.
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Old Posted Mar 17, 2009, 11:54 PM
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Originally Posted by NYguy View Post
That's not right either. The WTC will be a target regardless of the height. The FT is the height that it is (1,776 ft) because it marks the beginning of America's independence (also why it was given the name of Freedom Tower). It was conceived as a 70-story office tower with a spire beside it that reached 1,776 ft. The office space would have topped out around 950-975 ft. That gradually got higher due to the demands put on the Freedom Tower. The base was heightened for security reasons eventually putting the tower on par with the original Twins. But the main reason the tower isn't much higher than it is is because it's an office tower. No hotel or condos at the top. Even if it made sense to put office space higher, there is a limited amount of space given to each tower. So, where before there were 2 supertalls, there will now be 3 supertalls and a near supertall.
I think a height of 2,750 feet would have been a bit better seeing as that represents another significant number and would have raised the height to something truly massive. It also seems like there is less total square footage than the previous WTC site.
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