July 12, 2011


While construction at The World Trade Center is progressing in lower Manhattan, visitors to the buildings marketing office on the 10th floor of 7 World Trade, can experience an engaging scale model of the completed site. The cast acrylic skyline opened just in time for Memorial Day weekend this year. I’ve seen the drawings and images of these buildings in publication, but experientially there’s nothing quite like strolling through three dimensional towers to fully understand the sculptural and spatial qualities these structures posses. The model project was a tremendous undertaking, requiring many hours with skilled hands. The buildings are lit from within; I can only imagine the dramatic night sky created from these glowing forms. The replica serves as a marketing tool for prospective tenants, but I feel its application is much broader. It allows the viewer the unique opportunity to step inside and look out to feel the connection this collection makes to the surrounding city.

“…The team mapped out a footprint of Lower Manhattan from Chambers to Albany streets on the north and south and from Hudson to just past City Hall from west to east. Scaled architecture studio Radii Inc. then began to experiment with varying levels of details and abstraction for the WTC buildings. “When you abstract a building, it can be as challenging as making it photo-real,” said Wood. “How do you distill it down to an iconic replica but still have it read as a whole?” More than 60 sheets of 4-by-8-foot acrylic went into the full model. Fenestration is laser-scored on the exterior, and interiors contain ghosts of interior floor plates and cores. Only details that point to the essence of each design are included: Roger’s structural ladder accentuates its verticality, while Calatrava’s transportation hub is distilled into a bony spine and Snøhetta’s visitors center into a gestural representation of the building’s gradated skin”. the architects newspaper

Images found here.

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