2 World Trade Center

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Coordinates: 40°42′44″N74°00′40″W / 40.712095°N 74.011002°W / 40.712095; -74.011002


2 World Trade Center
200 Greenwich Street
Two World Trade Center (CGI).jpg
Foster and Partners' Original Proposed Design (2006)
2 World Trade Center
General information
StatusUnder construction
Architectural style Neomodern
Location200 Greenwich Street, Manhattan, New York 10007
Country United States
Coordinates 40°42′44″N74°00′40″W / 40.712095°N 74.011002°W / 40.712095; -74.011002
Construction startedNovember 10, 2008
Completed2024 (est.)
Owner Port Authority of New York and New Jersey
Architectural1,323 ft (403 m)
Technical details
Floor count82
Floor area2,800,000 sq ft (260,000 m²)
Design and construction
Architect Foster and Partners
Architecture firmAdamson Associates Architects
Developer Silverstein Properties
EngineerJaros Baum & Bolles
Structural engineer WSP Cantor Seinuk
Services engineerVan Deusen & Associates

2 World Trade Center (also known as 200 Greenwich Street) is a skyscraper under construction as part of the World Trade Center complex in Manhattan, New York City. [1] It will replace the original 2 World Trade Center, which was completed in 1972 and subsequently destroyed during the September 11 attacks in 2001, and it will occupy the position of the original 5 World Trade Center. The foundation work was completed in 2013. [2] [3]

Original building (1973–2001)

The two original towers, 1 World Trade Center (center) and Two World Trade Center (right), on July 19, 2001. WTC-towers and hotel.jpg
The two original towers, 1 World Trade Center (center) and Two World Trade Center (right), on July 19, 2001.
Viewers atop old Two World Trade Center observation deck looking north toward mid-Manhattan on June 21, 1984. Two World Trade Center Observation Deck.jpg
Viewers atop old Two World Trade Center observation deck looking north toward mid-Manhattan on June 21, 1984.
United Airlines Flight 175 hits 2 WTC on September 11, 2001. UA Flight 175 hits WTC south tower 9-11 edit.jpeg
United Airlines Flight 175 hits 2 WTC on September 11, 2001.

When completed in 1973, 2 World Trade Center (the South Tower) became the second tallest building in the World – behind its twin, 1 World Trade Center. The South Tower's rooftop observation deck was 1,362 ft (415 m) high and its indoor observation deck was 1,310 ft (400 m) high. [4] The World Trade Center towers held the height record only briefly; the Willis Tower in Chicago, finished in May 1973, reached 1,450 feet (440 m) at the rooftop. [5] Throughout its existence, however, the South Tower had more floors (at 110) than any other building. This number was not surpassed until the advent of the Burj Khalifa, which opened in 2010. [6] [7]

Of the 110 stories, eight were set aside for technical services in mechanical floors (floors 7/8, 41/42, 75/76, and 108/109), which are four two-floor areas that evenly spaced up the building. All the remaining floors were free for open-plan offices. Each floor of the towers had 40,000 square feet (3,700 m2) of space for occupancy. The original Two World Trade Center had 95 express and local elevators. [8] The tower had 3,800,000 square feet (350,000 m2) of office space. [9]

Initially conceived as a complex dedicated to companies and organizations directly taking part in "world trade", the South Tower, along with 1 World Trade Center (also known as the North Tower) at first failed to attract the expected clientele. During the early years, various governmental organizations became key tenants of the World Trade Center towers including the State of New York. It was not until the 1980s that the city's perilous financial state eased, after which an increasing number of private companies – mostly financial firms tied to Wall Street — became tenants. During the 1990s, approximately 500 companies had offices in the complex including many financial companies such as Morgan Stanley, Aon Corporation, Salomon Brothers, and the Port Authority itself. The basement concourse of the World Trade Center included The Mall at the World Trade Center, [10] along with a PATH station. [11]

Electrical service to the towers was supplied by Consolidated Edison (ConEd) at 13,800 volts. This service passed through the World Trade Center Primary Distribution Center (PDC) and sent up through the core of the building to electrical substations located on the mechanical floors. The substations stepped down the 13,800 primary voltage to 480/277 volt secondary service, and then further down to 208/120 volt general power and lighting service. The complex also was served by emergency generators located in the sub-levels of the towers and on the roof of 5 WTC. [12] [13]

The 110th floor of 1 World Trade Center (the North Tower) housed radio and television transmission equipment; access to the roof of 1 WTC was controlled from the WTC Operations Control Center (OCC) located in the B1 level of 2 WTC.

At 9:03 a.m. EDT on September 11, 2001, five terrorists crashed United Airlines Flight 175 into the southern facade of the South Tower. [14] [15] Three buildings in the World Trade Center complex, including 2 WTC, collapsed due to fire-induced structural failure. [16] The light construction and hollow nature of the structures allowed the jet fuel to penetrate far inside the towers, igniting many large fires simultaneously over a wide area of the impacted floors. The fuel from the planes burned at most for a few minutes, but the contents of the buildings burned over the next hour to hour and a half. [17]

The fires might not have been as centrally positioned, nor as intense, had traditionally heavy high-rise construction been standing in the way of the aircraft. Debris and fuel would likely have remained mostly outside the buildings or concentrated in more peripheral areas away from the building cores, which would then not have become unique failure points. In this scenario, the towers might have stood far longer, perhaps indefinitely. [18] [19] The fires were hot enough to weaken the columns and cause floors to sag, pulling perimeter columns inward and reducing their ability to support the mass of the building above. [20] The South Tower collapsed at 9:59 a.m. after burning for 56 minutes in the fire caused by the impact of United Airlines Flight 175 and the explosion of its fuel. [16]

New building

The new 82-story building, if erected, will have a total height of 1,323 feet (403 m). [21] In comparison, the Empire State Building's roof at the 102nd floor is 1,250 feet (380 m) tall, 1,454 feet (443 m) with its antenna, and the original 2 World Trade Center (referred to as the South Tower) was 1,362 feet (415 m).


The tower was originally designed by Foster and Partners in 2006, then redesigned by the Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG), before finally being given back to Foster and Partners for resign of the original concept in 2020. [21] [22]

Foster and Partners

In Foster and Partners' original design, the structural engineer for the building was WSP Cantor Seinuk. [23] In the original plan, the building's sloping roof consisted of four diamonds inclined toward the memorial that would have provided a visual marker around the skyline of just where the original towers were. The tower was designed to resemble a diamond, with cross bracing intersects and indentations breaking up the sides. [24] The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey said the following about 200 Greenwich Street's wedged rooftop: "Designed by Lord Foster, the tower incorporates WTC master planner Daniel Libeskind's 'wedge of light' concept, and will cast no shadow on the memorial park on September 11." [25] The total floor space of 200 Greenwich Street was anticipated to include 2,400,000 square feet (220,000 m2) of office space and another 130,000 square feet (12,000 m2) for retail shops and access areas to the underground World Trade Center PATH station.

Bjarke Ingels Group

BIG's Proposed Design (2015) 2 WTC HeroShot Image by BIG.jpg
BIG's Proposed Design (2015)

On June 9, 2015, Wired magazine reported that Two World Trade Center would be newly redesigned by Bjarke Ingels of Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG), and be built by 2020. The bottom half of the new design would have been leased out to 21st Century Fox and News Corp [26] until they decided against leaving their current headquarters. [27]

Bjarke Ingels Group began redesigning 2 World Trade Center in December 2014, upon the requests of the property's developer Silverstein Properties and its possible future media tenants. [21] The project's redesign was warranted since financial firms had since migrated away from the Financial District, making leasing out the new buildings a struggle and further prolonging the World Trade Center's redevelopment. Financial firms were the intended occupants for Foster and Partners' 2 World Trade Center, and the original proposal's sky lobby design was not attractive to media tenants, who have been the leading tenants of the new WTC towers and were expected to occupy BIG's redesigned building.

This design featured a cantilevering structure viewed from a northern perspective, but a terraced structure from an eastern perspective. From the south and west, the building's profile was vertically straight, but appeared to be leaning slightly toward One World Trade Center because of the cantilevering design. In an interview, Bjarke Ingels described the concept of the redesign as such: "Two World Trade is almost like a vertical village of bespoke buildings within the building, that also can be seen as a single tower. It actually has an inclination towards One World Trade Center, so the two towers – even though they're not twinning – by having a mutual relationship, the space between them is parallel, although at an incline." [21] The tower had also been described to integrate Tribeca with the Financial District, as the design's cantilevers and terraces resembled the modern architecture known of the neighborhood.

The first three floors of the 2,800,000 square feet (260,000 m2) office building, including the ground level, would have featured about 100,000 square feet (9,300 m2) of retail space. [28] The tower would have been the second–tallest skyscraper on the World Trade Center site, following One World Trade Center.

Return to Foster and Partners

After the pulling out of News Corp and 21st Century Fox, the future of the site became uncertain, with calls for the tower's design to be reverted to its original incarnation. [29] In a press interview, site developer Larry Silverstein signaled that both the Foster and BIG site plans were under consideration, and that a choice between the two would be made by a future prospective tenant. [30] In February 2019, Silverstein suggested in an interview that construction may soon begin "on spec", or without an anchor tenant, given the strong economy and leasing progress made on neighboring towers. [31] In January 2020, Silverstein announced that he and Norman Foster were working together to update Foster's original design, and that it would be "significantly modified to be more reflective of contemporary needs and taste". [32] [33] [22]


Excavation for 200 Greenwich Street commenced in 2008 [34] and the building was originally scheduled to be completed sometime between 2011 and 2016. On May 11, 2009, however, it was announced that the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey was seeking to reduce the tower to a "stump" building of approximately ten stories. [35] The overall plan, which also calls for a similar reduction in height for 3 World Trade Center and the cancellation of 5 World Trade Center, would halve the amount of office space available in the fully reconstructed World Trade Center to 5 million square feet (465,000 square meters). [35] The agency cited the recession and disagreements with developer Larry Silverstein as reasons for the proposed reduction. [35] The plan has seen some opposition; a May 2009 piece in the New York Post challenged the necessity of the office space reduction, given Lower Manhattan's low commercial vacancy rate compared to other U.S. cities and overall demand for modern office properties. [36]

Silverstein is opposed to the plan, and filed a notice of dispute on July 7, 2009. By doing so, the development firm began a two-week period during which renegotiated settlements and a binding arbitration regarding the construction of the four World Trade Center towers can be made. [37] Silverstein Properties, which has paid the Port Authority over $2.75 billion in financing, noted the organization's inability to meet construction obligations in its official complaint. The development firm has proposed further government intervention in the project as a way of settling the dispute. [37] On December 2, 2009, a US$2.6 billion tax-free bond issue for the building's construction was approved by the state of New York to continue construction on the World Trade Center site. The construction of Two World Trade Center, however, remained on-hold. [38]

On March 25, 2010, the Port Authority released plans to build Two and Three World Trade Center to street level. The transit and retail podium at the 175 Greenwich Street site would be constructed immediately, but the construction of Tower 3 would be delayed until Silverstein Properties obtains financing for the remaining cost of the tower. Tower 3 will be built, but Tower 2's office construction will wait until the economy improves. [39] Tower 2 foundation work began on June 1, 2010, but construction was halted in August 2012. [40] The street-level foundation was finished by November 2012 [41] and construction of everything up to street level was completed in mid-2013. [2] [39] The rest of the building, however, has yet to be built unless tenants for Tower 2 can be found. [42]

On February 11, 2019, Larry Silverstein said in an interview that he was considering building the tower without a signed tenant. He stated, "For all intents and purposes, it wouldn't be a bad idea to start on Tower 2 because it won't be finished until about 2022, 2023." [43]

Possible tenants

Unfinished construction site 2WTC Jan2013.jpg
Unfinished construction site

In 2013, Citigroup had shortlisted the tower as one of three potential locations for its headquarters for when its lease on 399 Park Avenue expired in 2017. [44] The company eventually chose nearby 388 Greenwich Street, however: a building that it already had under lease.

Silverstein has faced considerable difficulty in persuading tenants to lease floorspace in Two World Trade Center. Most commonly, businesses ultimately decide against doing so because of the costs of moving in, but others prefer their current locations in Midtown Manhattan despite the leases sometimes being more costly, since Midtown Manhattan offers easier access to the Upper East Side, North Jersey, Long Island, Westchester, and Connecticut. Silverstein has tried to appeal to the Downtown's proximity to nearby Brooklyn, the residence of many technology and media companies' employees. At present, prospective companies either are too large to be housed adequately in 2 World Trade Center (such as Facebook or Google), or conclude it would save money to remain where they are (such as News Corp and Fox Corporation). [45]

Bloomberg Business reported on June 2, 2015, that News Corp and 21st Century Fox, both owned by Rupert Murdoch, had signed a non-binding agreement with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to create a joint headquarters at Two World Trade Center. Silverstein said, "A decision by 21st Century Fox and News Corp. to move to the new World Trade Center would cap a seismic shift that has taken place in Lower Manhattan over the past decade. This isn't your grandfather's Wall Street." [46] The change of lead architects, from Norman Foster to Bjarke Ingels, was dependent on the Murdoch companies' relocations to the site; a redesign was deemed necessary given the different requirements for TV studios as opposed to financial companies, the assumed major tenants for the Foster design. Ingels's design would be kept at the same height as Foster's, but it was unclear how the redesign would conflict with the below-grade work already completed, which conformed to the original building design. [47] On January 15, 2016, it was reported that the two companies had decided against moving into 2 World Trade Center, instead keeping their current headquarters on the Avenue of the Americas. [27] [48] They had concluded that "given the scale of investment in a relocation of this size, that [ sic ] our resources would be better directed elsewhere." [45]

In September 2017, Deutsche Bank was considering relocating their U.S. headquarters to 2 WTC, signing on as anchor tenant once their lease expires at their current location along nearby 60 Wall Street. [49] In two separate instances in September 2017, Silverstein said that the tower had a planned completion date of 2022. [50] However, in May 2018, it was announced the bank was instead relocating to Time Warner Center at Columbus Circle. [51]

See also

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