News briefs

March 01, 2003 |

Sky's the limit for WTC design, but initial focus is underground. With the selection last month of the Studio Daniel Libeskind design for the redevelopment of the World Trade Center site, officials at the Lower Manhattan Development Corp. and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey are turning their sights toward further development of Phase One plans for the design's underground transportation features.

Libeskind's Memory Foundations design leaves portions of the Trade Center's remaining slurry wall known as the "bathtub" exposed, symbolizing the strength and endurance of American democracy, and creating a setting for a memorial and a museum. Chief among the five complex angular office buildings planned for the site is a 1,776-ft.-tall garden-filled spire, which would be the tallest building in the world, surpassing the Petronas Towers in Malaysia, which are 1,483 ft. tall.

How the designs will incorporate the need for infrastructure, including a tour bus garage, parking, and facilities, and more than 1 million sq. ft. of retail space, much of it planned to be underground, are two challenges for the project. Another challenge is how the plan will be integrated with the memorial competition planned for this spring.

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