Even if you think it looks a little short (damn you, perspective!), it is hard to deny that One World Trade Center is starting to really show its height. And at some point around 2 p.m. today it is set to become the tallest building in town as steel columns go into place, giving the rising tower a height of 1,271 feet, higher than the observation deck at the Empire State Building (1,250 feet).
Not that there isn't still some controversy surrounding the height of the building and what it all means. Because, if you include the antenna on the Empire State Building, the Art Deco skyscraper is still taller at 1,454 feet. But when the 104-story One World Trade is done, however, it will be 1,776 feet (with its antennae). With the antenna the building will be the tallest in the Western hemisphere—the former Sears tower is 1,729 feet with its antenna—but even then it will still be dwarfed by the Burj Khalfia in Dubai, which is 2,717 feet tall. Win some, lose some.
Beyond the game of 'whose is bigger,' though, can we all just take a moment and say 'hey, that building doesn't look half bad?' And also, 'nice to finally have something real and big going up down there?' Not to mention, 'damn, those views are going to great. Shame they aren't going to open a new Windows on the World restaurant up there.
Mayor Bloomberg said, “The New York City skyline is - once again - stretching to new heights. The latest progress at the World Trade Center is a testament to New Yorkers’ strength and resolve - and to our belief in a city that is always reaching upward. This building has been a labor of love for many, and I congratulate the men and women who have worked together to solve the challenges presented by this incredibly complex project. Today our city has a new tallest building - and a new sense of how bright our future is.”
One World Trade Center, possibly the most expensive office building ever built, is expected to be completed next year.