View Poll Results: Construction is underway, how do you feel about the final design for the WTC site?

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  • I am more than satisfied; I believe that the final design surpasses that of the original World Trade Center. 10/10

    50 26.04%
  • While nothing may ever live up to the Twin Towers, I am wholly satisfied with the new World Trade Center; it is a new symbol for a new era. 7/10

    55 28.65%
  • I have come to terms with the new World Trade Center; although it has a number of flaws, I find the design to be acceptable. 5/10

    48 25.00%
  • I am wholly disappointed with the New World Trade Center; we will live to regret the final design. 0/10

    22 11.46%
  • I am biased, but honest, and hate anything that is not a reincarnation of the original Twin Towers.

    17 8.85%
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Thread: World Trade Center Developments

  1. #2881
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  2. #2882

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    Towers 3 and 4 are so close. Rogers and Maki really better consult each other pretty regularly on this.

  3. #2883

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    Quote Originally Posted by PHLguy
    According to a recent article the other towers will now be 900, 950 and 1000 feet tall. (I don't think anyone actually believed the 1250-1450 figure)


    Could you make a rendering with these heights? thanks.
    And they know...

  4. #2884
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    STR, I like your version of Gehry's Beekman building better.

  5. #2885

    Default fredom towers construction progress

    What is the latest news on the freedom tower construction? Have they started to deconstruct the garage yet? How many more weeks until we see foundation being poured?

  6. #2886
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    Downtown Express
    Volume 19, Number 2 | May 26 - June 1, 2006

    Reporter’s notebook

    One opening, one bombshell at the W.T.C.

    By Josh Rogers

    Dickens might have called it a “Tale of Two Days.”

    Thursday, Larry Silverstein and Port Authority officials said World Trade Center office reconstruction — which had been delayed for years and finally began last month — could stop in June if the insurance companies started acting like, well, insurance companies – that is only paying out money when they had to. By Tuesday, Silverstein said “there is no reason” why the rebuilding schedule will be delayed and Kenneth Ringler, the Port’s executive director, said “there is no way we will let this stop.”

    Nothing much had changed in five days, but Tuesday was the day to celebrate the reopening of 7 W.T.C., just across the street from the W.T.C. site (although perhaps miles away in terms of political complications). Silverstein said he wanted to “avoid [thinking about] the challenges” on a celebration day.

    Tuesday did feel like a celebration. Fifth graders from the two elementary schools closest to the site, P.S. 89 and P.S. 234, sang with Irish tenor Ronan Tynan. Silverstein unveiled a sculpture by Jeff Koons in a new public plaza built next to 7 W.T.C. Lou Reed led a group of Downtown musicians in a free concert. And real tenants are moving into the building.

    “Another opening – this one is a real one,” said Catherine McVay Hughes, who has attended countless ceremonies over the last five years and is chairperson of Community Board 1’s W.T.C. Redevelopment Committee. Silverstein Properties moved in last Friday, the three architects designing buildings for the site’s East Side will also be setting up shop, and three rent-paying tenants are beginning to customize their spaces and will move in the fall.

    Last week, Silverstein hosted a state Assembly hearing in his building and released a joint letter he and Ringler sent to their 16 insurance firms. Silverstein said attorneys for some of the firms had indicated they would reduce their payments if Silverstein and the Port finalize their framework agreement in which the Port would take back control of the Freedom Tower and Tower 5 sites.

    Silverstein said if he doesn’t get an insurance check in June the work that began at the end of April will stop. “Without the insurance proceeds you can’t meet the milestones,” Silverstein told the panel headed by Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, whose district includes the W.T.C. “You need that on a monthly basis.”

    The developer said the firms are looking for a “new excuse” to “shirk their responsibilities.” Silverstein and the Port expect to get $4.65 billion in insurance money as a result of a series of lawsuits and settlements.

    The Port’s general counsel, Darrell Buchbinder, however, said repeatedly at the Thursday hearing that the insurance company payments up until now have been “voluntary” and he did not say the companies were prohibited from stopping the payments, at least temporarily.

    Ringler called on the firms to “step up and do the right thing.”

    Jacques Dubois, chairperson Swiss Re America, one of Silverstein’s largest insurers, told The New York Sun that the new agreement could change the firm’s payments.

    “There was a conceptual framework that has been agreed to and we need to see details of the final agreement to determine if it affects our coverage obligations,” he said.


    ***

    The Port on Thursday also released the framework agreement it signed with Silverstein Properties and revealed that the deal was not as tough on the authority as officials had implied previously

    The Port can take back the leasing rights from Silverstein if he misses a deadline. Ringler told Silver the agreement has no penalties against the Port if it misses a deadline

    “It was a good negotiation on my part,” Ringler said, drawing a few laughs in the crowd. “The Port Authority is committed to move this project forward,” he quickly added.

    The day the authority’s board of commissioners approved the agreement, April 26, Anthony Coscia, the board’s chairperson, said it was “a development plan that has real deadlines – deadlines on ourselves, deadlines on Silverstein Properties.”

    Steve Coleman, a P.A. spokesperson, did not comment this week on what Coscia meant by “real deadlines.”

    Silver focused on why the Port still hadn’t built the eastern “bathtub” needed to allow construction on Church St. “They could have chosen to do this anytime until now, is that correct,” he asked the developer, who said that may be true.

    Ringler said it took time to design the protective bathtub and it had been unclear who would pay for it. Gov. George Pataki, who shares control of the Port with the New Jersey governor, said last spring that he was going to transfer about $600 million of 9/11-related transportation money to the W.T.C. site, and the Federal Transit Adminstration formally approved a $478 million payment to the Port for the bathtub last July. Ringler said he hoped bathtub construction would begin this summer and that the Tower 3 and 4 sites would be ready for office and retail space construction by next summer. The Tower 2 site would be ready by mid-2008 under the current schedule. The four office towers are expected to be done by the end of 2012.

    ***

    Silverstein and the Port have been getting along better since signing the general agreement, something made clear at Tuesday’s celebration. Ringler praised Silverstein as a risk taker, although he added there may more disagreements in the months ahead as the two sides try to agree on all of the details needed to be decided by September 20, when the framework deal expires.

    “Larry and I have yelled at each other and we probably will again,” Ringler said, in perhaps the only negative comment during the ceremony Tuesday.

    Seven W.T.C., which Silverstein owns, is separate from the W.T.C. site and has been free of many of the complications across the street. No one died when 7 W.T.C. collapsed and thousands of human remains were not found there. There is no memorial at 7, no train center underground, and no multi-billion-dollar infrastructure network like the one that must be built at the W.T.C. site. The Port owns both locations, but at the W.T.C. site, it owned the buildings too and had signed a lease with Silverstein two months before the attack.

    ***

    Tuesday certainly was a less complicated day. Hundreds of people came to listen to the music, admire the plaza, and look up at the new building. Silverstein said he felt a “tremendous sense of pride and satisfaction for me to be able to look at this building and see what we have accomplished in five years since Sept. 11.”

    Koons told Downtown Express that he had been designing a sculpture specifically for the new plaza, but decided it was too big and would overwhelm the trees and flowers. He decided one of his previous works, “Balloon Flower,” was the right scale and mood for the area. Several children who climbed it the first day seemed to agree. His works typically sell for several million dollars, but he said he and his family decided to donate it indefinitely.

    “We’ve put it in on a long-term loan,” he said. “It depends how long people enjoy it.”

    Ken Smith, who designed the plaza, was thrilled to see crowds enjoying it and said he thought the feeling could spread to the other side of Vesey St. “Everything works together – the building and the plaza and the artwork,” he said. “I think it bodes well for the Trade Center.”

    Josh@DowntownExpress.com

  7. #2887
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    Quote Originally Posted by pianoman11686
    Can you post it?


    Posted at SSP by Coolczech


    It took some time to get to the bottom -- or shall we say top -- of the situation. Alas, the three towers won't be as high as I reported. I had gotten the heights from Silverstein. Suspecting the numbers were higher than I thought they should be, I asked Silverstein to double check them and then separately confirmed the information with the LMDC, the government agency overseeing the development of the trade center's design guidelines. Only after the article ran did a Silverstein rep come to realize the information it provided was wrong. It took several more days to convince the LMDC of this fact (they stuck by the heights for several days) and also to confirm the numbers with the Port Authority, which owns the land. The confusion apparently stems from the fact that the Port Authority uses a height measuring system that begins several hundred feet below grade (bottom of the harbor, perhaps?). We will be running a correction shortly to this effect:

    The heights of three proposed skyscrapers at the World Trade Center are as follows: Tower 2 will be between 1,000 feet to 1,150 feet; Tower 3 will be between 950 to 1,050 feet; Tower 4 will be between 900 to 1,000 feet. A Marketplace article last Wednesday gave incorrect heights due to erroneous information supplied by the towers' builder, Silverstein Properties Inc., and the government agency overseeing the rebuilding, the Lower Manhattan Development Corp.
    Thanks for you note and your interest.

    Best regards,

    -------------------------------------------
    Alex Frangos
    Staff Reporter
    The Wall Street Journal
    200 Liberty Street
    New York, NY 10281
    alex.frangos@wsj.com

  8. #2888
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    Thanks, that seems to make sense. But there's still a range given for the towers. It seems you've decided that the lowest possible heights will be used for all three towers, which is a little premature on your part.

  9. #2889

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    Quote Originally Posted by davestanke
    The PA lists heights from 300' below ground. That will shrink the buildings a bit.
    Score one point for Dave Stanke, who somehow figured out the PA's curious building measurement system well before the Wall Street Journal. (See DS's post above from May 17.)

  10. #2890

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    The PA's elevation-measurement methodology was explained in this Times article last year:

    For Trade Center Builders, the Future Starts With a Very Old Number
    • By DAVID W. DUNLAP (NYT) 864 words
      Published: October 15, 2005
    With the public captivated in recent weeks by talk of freedom, patriotism, memory, honor and dishonor at ground zero, the engineers who are actually shaping its future have been working in another dimension.

    Inches.

    And they have now set what is perhaps the most important dimension for the future World Trade Center: the height of the memorial plaza that will be its spatial and spiritual centerpiece.
    What makes that height so important is that it determines the relationship of the plaza, which must be tabletop flat, to everything around it: the Freedom Tower, the PATH terminal and the surrounding streets and sidewalks. But setting the dimension is not easy on a site that slopes down more than 20 feet as it approaches the Hudson River.
    The plaza itself needs to be as close to the sidewalk as possible, no more than three and a half feet higher or lower, so that it can be seen and approached easily by all visitors -- including the disabled -- from all directions, without walls or long flights of stairs.
    ''The appearance of the memorial as well as the accessibility of the memorial were paramount,'' said John P. Cahill, chief of staff to Gov. George E. Pataki and the top downtown redevelopment official.
    After months of pushing and pulling, the plaza elevation was finally set last month at 313 feet above a subterranean benchmark known as the World Trade Center Downtown Restoration Program Datum.
    ''Giving up inches got a lot done,'' said Steven Plate, deputy director for priority capital programs of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which owns the trade center site. ''As a result of this effort, we've been able to move forward.''
    A datum is an imaginary horizontal plane against which a construction project is measured. Typically, it is set far below ground to ensure that all elevations -- even those in the deepest subbasement -- are above that plane, to avoid construction mistakes.
    The trade center datum, related to one originally used for the Hudson & Manhattan Railroad, the predecessor to PATH, is 297.347 feet below mean sea level.
    A higher plaza would have meant more room for utility lines, ductwork, mechanical areas and public spaces below ground. Too much height, however, would have set the memorial plaza apart from its environs, recalling the Austin J. Tobin Plaza of the original World Trade Center, which met West Street as a formidable wall.
    In recent weeks, the calibration of the plaza level -- which must be set before final construction drawings are prepared -- turned largely on reconciling the difference between the Freedom Tower lobby and the roadbed of Greenwich Street.
    Negotiations involved the Port Authority, the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, New York City Transit, the State Department of Transportation and Silverstein Properties, the developers of the Freedom Tower. ''Everybody had to make compromises,'' Mr. Cahill said.
    Greenwich Street, between Dey and Cortlandt Streets, started at elevation 316 feet, allowing for the No. 1 subway line underneath and the structural support, ductwork, fans and utility lines between the tunnel and the street surface.
    At this location, there could be only a one-foot difference between street and plaza, to permit emergency vehicles to get onto the memorial plaza from Greenwich Street. That tentatively set the plaza level elevation at 315 feet.
    But across Fulton Street from the memorial is the Freedom Tower. Its lobby runs through to Vesey Street, at the lowest end of the site. Silverstein Properties wanted the Fulton Street end of the lobby to align with the memorial but did not want too great a change in levels between the Fulton and Vesey Street sides.
    During several weeks of intense re-engineering, a way was found to lower Greenwich Street to elevation 314 feet by reconfiguring the underground ducts and reducing their size, changing the thickness of structural slabs, moving utilities and altering the slope of the street. That allowed the plaza level to be set at elevation 313 feet.
    Meanwhile, Silverstein Properties raised the Fulton Street side of the Freedom Tower lobby to elevation 311.2 feet. The 1.8-foot grade change between the tower lobby and the memorial across the street can be rendered almost imperceptible.
    The benefit is not only to the memorial design, said Stefan Pryor, president of the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, but also to the goal of knitting together Battery Park City and the World Financial Center with the financial district to the east.
    Mr. Plate of the Port Authority said that elevation 313 was still subject to minor modification, but that the recent problem-solving exercise would serve as a ''model for many other issues to come.'' He explained the secret of its success: ''Locking the doors and saying, 'We don't leave the room till we've worked it out.'''


    Chart/Map: ''Differing Heights Around the World Trade Center''
    Elevations are measured from an underground benchmark called the World Trade Center Downtown Restoration Program Datum, which is set at 297.347 feet below sea level. These measurements assist the construction process.

    Copyright 2005 The New York Times Company
    http://select.nytimes.com/search/res...A90994DD404482

    This does certainly not mean that the stated above-ground heights of buildings must be decreased by 300 (actually 297.347) feet to learn their actual heights.
    Last edited by ManhattanKnight; May 26th, 2006 at 01:12 PM.

  11. #2891

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    Quote Originally Posted by WSJ
    The heights of three proposed skyscrapers at the World Trade Center are as follows: Tower 2 will be between 1,000 feet to 1,150 feet; Tower 3 will be between 950 to 1,050 feet; Tower 4 will be between 900 to 1,000 feet. A Marketplace article last Wednesday gave incorrect heights due to erroneous information supplied by the towers' builder, Silverstein Properties Inc., and the government agency overseeing the rebuilding, the Lower Manhattan Development Corp.

    Quote Originally Posted by LMDC EIS
    The proposed shapes or bulk forms of Towers 2, 3, 4, and 5 have been slightly modified to maintain the downward spiral form of the relative tower heights while providing commercially viable floor plates. The footprint of Tower 2 would increase slightly to make viable Class A commercial office floor plates. The footprint would increase to the south, and consequently the building would decrease in height to 1,150 feet, compared with a height of 1,201 feet analyzed in the FGEIS. The height of Tower 3 would also decrease, from 1,080 feet to 1,050 feet. However, Tower 4 would be taller—increasing 47 feet to 1,000 feet.
    http://www.renewnyc.com/content/pdfs...emental_EA.pdf
    So the EIS is right with heights of 1150/1050/1000. It makes perfect sense that the range is given to the WSJ. It give each tower about 100 feet of leeway for architectural, structural, or infrastructure elements atop the buildings.

  12. #2892
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    Quote Originally Posted by pianoman11686
    Thanks, that seems to make sense. But there's still a range given for the towers. It seems you've decided that the lowest possible heights will be used for all three towers, which is a little premature on your part.


    Yea it was, but knowing low end larry he'll go for the shortest, fattest buildings.


    The towers at the WTC being fat is my biggest concern.

  13. #2893
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    Quote Originally Posted by JMGarcia
    So the EIS is right with heights of 1150/1050/1000. It makes perfect sense that the range is given to the WSJ. It give each tower about 100 feet of leeway for architectural, structural, or infrastructure elements atop the buildings.
    Yes, but the EIS was made before the elimination of Tower 5. Silverstein needs 10Msqft of space or he doesn't get full insurance payout. I believe it was Knarfor at SSP that calculated that this meant 5-10 more floors on the Church St. buildings. That's why I'm going with the high estimates, and I'd speculate the towers will end up 100 feet taller than that estmates. I wouldn't bet money on that, but that's what my gut tells me.

  14. #2894

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    Quote Originally Posted by STR
    Yes, but the EIS was made before the elimination of Tower 5. Silverstein needs 10Msqft of space or he doesn't get full insurance payout. I believe it was Knarfor at SSP that calculated that this meant 5-10 more floors on the Church St. buildings. That's why I'm going with the high estimates, and I'd speculate the towers will end up 100 feet taller than that estmates. I wouldn't bet money on that, but that's what my gut tells me.
    So, you think we'll get 1250/1150/1100?

  15. #2895
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    Something in that range, yes. That doesn't include any structural elements, which may increase it further. There was 1.1 Msqft of space allotted in Tower 5, it has to go somewhere and while everyone here can agree that Silverstein isn't a fan of height, I believe we can also agree that he wants that space more than he doesn't want to build high, leaving that 1Msqft on top of the surviving 2Msqft buildings. That's essentially my case for setting 1150,1050,1000 as the low-ball estimates at this point. The towers will be higher than that, I can assure you. 100 is just my subjective guess, I have little evidence for that number.

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