The spire will complete the full 1,776 height of 1 WTC
With only one segment remaining, the spire atop 1 World Trade Center is on track for completion this month. The 408-foot-tall finial completes the tower's full height of 1,776 feet, while work continues throughout the 1,368-foot-tall skyscraper. The Port Authority presented the latest updates to Community Board 1 on April 4th, noting that 55 percent of the building is pre-leased, and tenant floors are now being built out.
Construction also continues concurrently in several more areas of the iconic tower, most visibly on floors 90 and 100, where facade installation is substantially complete. Because those floors house mechanical and ventilation systems, the facade takes on a different appearance due to air vents built into the glass panels, which allow air to pass through and cool equipment.
Port Authority Assistant Director of WTC Construction Quentin Brathwaite added that fitout is ramping up at the "One World Observatory" on the 100th, 101st, and 102nd floors. Operator Legends Hospitality, which recently signed a 15-year, $800 million lease with the agency, will continue its interior work both on the upper floors and in the sub-grade public-entrance level. Several details about the observation deck remain under discussion, including the opening date, dining options, and ticket price.
The observatory is expected to open in early 2015, and draw approximately 3.8 million visitors a year.
At the base of 1 WTC, also called the "podium," the special louvered glass panels are complete on the south side of the building, and crews are now beginning installation on both the east and west sides.
The sub-grade portion of the tower also ties into the "east-west connector," the pedestrian tunnel that will link the World Financial Center to the temporary Vesey Street PATH station in late 2013, and to the WTC Transportation Hub in 2014.
Brathwaite reported that steel "ribs" for the Hub are largely complete on the lower levels, and this spring installation of the larger steel members will begin -- forming the first Santiago Calatrava-designed elements visible above the fence line at the WTC site. That installation will continue through the summer, with oversized-steel nighttime deliveries coordinated with several city agencies via the Manhattan Bridge, Broadway, and Fulton Street.
Connecting the entire site underground will be the Vehicular Security Center (VSC), which is expected to open to construction vehicles only in October 2013, though work will continue there throughout 2014. The VSC's entrance area along Liberty just east of West Street is nearing completion, and Port Authority crews are working on final structural elements that will allow Liberty Park and the new St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church to be built above it (on the east side of the site, between Liberty and Cedar Streets).
Brathwaite also noted that construction at 3 WTC will continue for at least several more months, and WTC leaseholder Silverstein Properties is still working to procure an anchor tenant that will allow its full 71-story build out. Plans for "Site 5," at Greenwich and Albany, remain on hold.
The streets around and through the WTC also are gradually being rebuilt, and this summer the Vesey Street sidewalk outside of the 2 WTC site will undergo final utility and restoration work in time to open later this year.