Though the PATH terminal is the third key element of the trade center redevelopment project, the design will almost burst on the civic consciousness, since work has proceeded quietly, with none of the discordant prelude that accompanied Freedom Tower and the memorial, "Reflecting Absence."
"On the scale of the next 30, 40 years, generosity of planning is essential," said Mr. Calatrava, who is widely regarded as the world's leading designer of lyrical transportation structures. His partners in the PATH project are the STV Group and DMJM & Harris.
To hear the terminal described by those who have seen it, the Port Authority embraced the idea of creating a generous space..........
the most striking element above ground would be curving, winglike canopies. They would run the length of the oblong glass-and-steel shell that is to serve as an enormous skylight over the terminal concourse. They would also extend over the plazas created to the northeast and southwest of the terminal building.
At the apogee of their arcs, the wings would rise more than 100 feet into the air. Given the size of the block - bounded by Church Street and the re-established Fulton, Greenwich and Dey Streets - they would apparently be more than 350 feet long.
Even more striking, said those who have been shown the proposal, the wings could pivot aside to create an opening to the sky along the main axis of the terminal. This would allow the concourse to be ventilated naturally; a pleasant amenity on a spring day, a necessity in case of fire.