One World Trade Center: Tallest Building in NYC is a “Fortress”

One World Trade Center is an important part of the New York City skyline. Otherwise known as One WTC, the skyscraper is the tallest building in the US. Today, One WTC stands as a symbol of triumph over terror.

Formerly known as Freedom Tower, One WTC is located at the same site as the former World Trade Center Towers, which were destroyed on September 11, 2001.

One WTC Building And Design

One World Trade Center

One WTC is 1,776 feet tall. The number is a symbolic nod to the year America established its independence from British rule, 1776.

Opened in 2014, today the building is at 95 percent occupancy. One WTC has 104 floors, 73 elevators, and three million square feet worth of office space. There’s even an observation deck at 1,268 feet. 

Almost 425,000 cubic yards of concrete were used to build One World Trade Center. That’s enough concrete to build a five-foot-wide sidewalk from New York City to Washington D.C., roughly 226.2 miles.

Budget: $3.9 billion

Architectural Design

One WTC is considered an iconic glass building, named a “fortress enveloped in glass” by iconeye, with geometric shapes.

The exterior consists of 2,112 insulated, laminated Viracon glass windows – the installation process was meticulous and hard. At the 200-foot concrete base, 13-foot pairs of glass fins provide structural support. The concrete used throughout was made from LaFarge cement.  

Eight isosceles triangles define the building’s shape. Meanwhile, the top is a square, glass parapet. The building’s core sits 110 feet below the base which houses the  mechanical rooms and egress.

Is One WTC The Tallest Building In NYC?

Since it was classified as America’s tallest building, One WTC has been mired in controversy. The problem stems from how a skyscraper’s height is defined.  

A 408-foot tall spire extends from the roof of One WTC. Without the spire, the building would stand at 1,368 feet. Naysayers claimed that “counting the antenna is like counting relish at a hot dog eating contest.” (The New York Times)

Who Designed One World Trade Center?

Architect David M. Childs of Skidmore (took care of Willis Tower from Chicago), Owings & Merrill (SOM) designed One WTC. The same firm designed Willis Tower in Chicago and the Burj Khalifa, in Dubai, the world’s tallest building. The structure was built on the 16-acre ground-zero site. The area includes a September 11 memorial and museum.

A mall and two office buildings, including the Oculus transportation hub are included in the area. The rebuilt Greek Orthodox Church and a performing arts center are slated to open in 2023. Future plans include a residential tower and more office buildings.

Building Controversies

Controversies emerged during the construction of One WTC. Beginning with what should have been built at ground zero. Legal battles, financial issues, and political disagreements remained constant threats.

One WTC Is Safer Than Most Skyscrapers

The collapse of the Twin Towers inspired architects to make One WTC the safest skyscraper in the world. The building is made of hybrid concrete and steel. It’s also supported with longer steel reinforcement bars. Additional dense fireproofing and an extra staircase for first responders was included in the design.

One WTC Observatory

One World Trade is the One World Trade Center Observatory. The main deck is on the 100th floor. Other observation platforms are one the 101st and 102nd floors. The tallest deck sits at 1,270 feet, lower than the Empire State Building open-air observation deck.

On a clear day, visitors at One World Trade can view over half of the New York metropolitan area from the observatory.

One WTC Vs the former Twin Towers

One WTC is taller than the former Twin Towers, standing at an official height of 1,776 feet. The original Twin Towers had 110 floors. One WTC has 104 floors. The building’s base is 200 feet square, which is the same footprint as the Twin Towers.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)FAQ

How much does it cost to go to the observation deck?

General admission tickets to the observation deck, called the Observatory, are $43.00.

Is One World Trade Center the tallest building in the US?

One WTC is not only the tallest building in the United States, but also in te Western Hemisphere. It also ranks seventh among the tallest buildings in the world.

What is inside One World Trade Center?

The tallest skyscraper in New York is an office building. It has 3 million square feet of rental space.

How long did it take to build One WTC?

It took 11 years to build the office skyscraper. You can watch time-lapse videos online of the entire construction process.