Event Horizon: One World Trade Close To Topping Out

The No. 1 attraction of Brooklyn Heights, according to any tourist guide, is the dramatic view of Manhattan over yonder from the Promenade. Of course, more than a decade ago, we lost a primary component of that cityscape, on 9/11/2001. The Wall Street Journal offers an update on construction of One World Trade Center: It is now 100 stories tall, just 5 stories from topping out.

Tishman Construction, the New York-based builder that has overseen the project, says it will be the nation’s tallest building, with the coming addition of a 400-foot spire atop the 1,368-foot tower. The company’s Mike Mennella tells WSJ that One WTC will surpass the height of the Empire State Building in the next week or so “on the way to 105, and we’ll go to the antenna above that.”

Below are renderings of the finished Tower, and its progress as of April 1, 2012.
(Photos: WTC.com)

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  • Karl Junkersfeld

    The cost of One World Trade is in the neighborhood of 3.5 billion. Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest tower in Dubai, only cost $1.5 Billion.


    Union labor and security concerns are two prominent reasons for the extraordinary expense.

  • resident

    I’ll take union labor and higher cost over the human rights abuses with migrant workers used to fuel the “cheap” construction in Dubai any day of the week…

  • Jorale-man

    Resident, I have to agree. Dubai gets its workers from South Asia who are subject to all kinds of abuses.

    To me, I can’t help but thinking how aesthetically watered-down 1 WTC is from the original designs. They succumbed to a bunker mentality and a lot of original daring fell by the wayside. But at least they’re making some progress on the site now.

  • Slide

    Yes, God forbid that the “union” workers that brave the elements day after day, working in dangerous and physically demanding conditions should be paid a living wage. I mean it’s not like they are doing something extremely difficult like video taping a segment on the Shake Shack.

  • stuart

    It is going to be an astonishing new dominant feature in the skyline. I don’t even mind the $16 tolls on the George Washington Bridge.

  • David on Middagh


    Feel free to argue unionization points, but you don’t have to criticize what Karl contributes to this blog for (I presume) no wages at all.

  • Jimmy H.

    DoM, who are you, the polite police? I think Slides jab at KJ is totally appropriate.

  • David on Middagh

    Jimmy H.,


    Ho-ly cow.

  • Slide

    Thank-you Jimmy. And let me say this, I am a big fan of Karl. As a new resident oh BH, I have enjoyed his videos and learning about my new-found home. That said, I really resent people taking shots at union workers. Construction is a very difficult, skilled and dangerous profession. To suggest it is they that are the problem somehow just rankles me.

    So no offense Karl, I just disagree strongly with your comment. (I enjoyed your Shake Shack piece)

  • JR

    I totally disagree with Karl’s slam at union labor also! Unions are needed to get citizens of the world a “living wage” not “minimum wage”. Jimmy please let Slide comment as he will, especially when he is correct.

  • Slide

    This is the wonderful Dubai construction industry that Karl apparently would prefer to see in our country.

    “Based on extensive interviews with workers, government officials and business representatives, the 71-page report, “Building Towers, Cheating Workers,” documents serious abuses of construction workers by employers in the UAE. These abuses include unpaid or extremely low wages, several years of indebtedness to recruitment agencies for fees that UAE law says only employers should pay, the withholding of employees’ passports, and hazardous working conditions that result in apparently high rates of death and injury.”


  • Hicks on hicks

    Dear Union Lovers,
    Name an industry that has prospered due to its unionization. North American unions are anachronisms that perpetuate the status quo, ruin competitiveness and reduce take home wages. The Triangle Shirtwaist factory fire occurred in 1911. Since then, thanks in part to unions, workers have gained many protections that did not previously exists. Today unions are just another tax imposed on us all to fund left wing politicians and to protect the lazy and those opposed to innovation.

  • Slide

    If you don’t see the benefits that unions have brought to this country then I am not going to convince you nor am I even going to try. This is certainly not the right forum for such a debate but I will say this, the decline of the middle class closely tracks the decline of unions. The middle class is what made this country great. Neighborhoods bustling with policemen, teacher, auto workers, firemen…. Hard working Americans that bought homes, bought consumer products, sent their kids to college and fought our wars so that some future Hedge Fund manager could make a billion dollars a year creating absolutely nothing and paying a lower tax rate than that fireman. Or that the the head of Citibank, that presided over an 80% decline in stock price should be rewarded with a $15M compensation package. Talk about protecting the lazy?

  • Hicks on hicks


  • Andrew Porter

    And all this is related to the WTC tower how? Talk about topic drift…

  • eg

    You are forgetting the role of organized crime that is responsible for increasing the costs of construction. Some of our mayors went after them but I don’t know if they can be rooted out. Unions, in principle, improved the workers lot. Some leaders, not so good.