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    Reconstruction Complications Continue

    by B.J. Novitski

    When architect Daniel Libeskind was chosen in February 2003 to redesign New York's World Trade Center site, it appeared to be an irrevocable decision about the fate of "Ground Zero." But controversies have persisted, and what finally gets built may be very different from Libeskind's original design vision.

    As ArchitectureWeek reported in March, tension was already brewing between Libeskind's aesthetic vision with spiky tower, sunken garden, and now technically discredited "Wedge of Light" and the more pragmatic real estate interests of developer Larry Silverstein who wants to replace, or even add to, the 10 million square feet (930,000 square meters) of leasable office space of the original towers.

    Observers who believed in Libeskind's abstract vision were alarmed when Silverstein hired noted SOM skyscraper designer, David Childs, to bring that abstraction into reality. Writing in the July 15, 2003 edition of the New York Times, Edward Wyatt noted that feathers were being further ruffled by Silverstein's proposal to move the tower from its symbolically significant location to a part of the site that would ultimately make it more profitable.   >>>

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    ArchWeek Image

    A glass tower has been the guiding vision in the design by Studio Daniel Libeskind for the reconstruction of the World Trade Center site in New York.
    Image: Studio Daniel Libeskind

    ArchWeek Image

    The original World Trade Center twin towers as seen from the Brooklyn Bridge.
    Great Buildings Photo Howard Davis

     

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