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Breaking Down the Cost of Calatrava’s World Trade Center Oculus

08:00 - 2 May, 2016
Breaking Down the Cost of Calatrava’s World Trade Center Oculus, via The Real Deal
via The Real Deal

Twelve years after Santiago Calatrava revealed his design for the World Trade Center Oculus, the PATH station finally opened to the public in March. Although not officially confirmed by the Port Authority, the total cost of the Oculus is estimated to be nearly four billion dollars - almost double the original budget. The Real Deal has broken down the big-ticket costs that went into the making of the Oculus.

Gallery: Santiago Calatrava's WTC Transportation Hub Photographed by Laurian Ghinitoiu

11:00 - 1 May, 2016
Gallery: Santiago Calatrava's WTC Transportation Hub Photographed by Laurian Ghinitoiu, © Laurian Ghinitoiu
© Laurian Ghinitoiu

Since it opened to the public two months ago, Santiago Calatrava's World Trade Center Transportation Hub has been the subject of intense debate. Critics and the public alike have tried to answer whether the building, while undeniably unique and striking, was worth the $4 billion price tag that made it the world's most expensive train station. Key to this question's answer will be the way that the building settles into its role as a piece of the city's fabric.

With construction work still surrounding the building - both on the site itself and at the nearby skyscrapers - photographer Laurian Ghinitoiu turned his camera lens onto the station to see how it has been absorbed into the life of the city, capturing the way the structure is revealed from unexpected vantage points and showing how its users react to the sublime internal space of the "oculus."

© Laurian Ghinitoiu © Laurian Ghinitoiu © Laurian Ghinitoiu © Laurian Ghinitoiu +30

If You Haven't Seen Calatrava's World Trade Center Oculus In Person, This is Pretty Darn Close

14:00 - 10 March, 2016

If you haven't had the opportunity to step inside Santiago Calatrava's World Trade Center Oculus, here is your chance. Miguel de Guzmán of Imagen Subliminal has captured the incredible space in VR (Virtual Reality), granting you 360-degree views of the infamous oculus. Put on your Google Cardboard and see it for yourself

Video: Time-Lapse of Santiago Calatrava's World Trade Center Oculus

12:00 - 4 March, 2016

Santiago Calatrava's long-awaited World Trade Center Oculus has officially opened. Thanks to EarthCam and the project's contractor Skanska USA, you can watch the $4 billion transportation hub take shape over the course of 42 months in just 65 seconds, from June 2011 to December 2014. For more, see what the critics have to say about the newly opened building here

With the Opening of the WTC Transportation Hub, Has Santiago Calatrava Been Vindicated?

09:30 - 4 March, 2016
With the Opening of the WTC Transportation Hub, Has Santiago Calatrava Been Vindicated?, via WTC Progress
via WTC Progress

After 12 long years and a series of construction headaches, Santiago Calatrava’s $4 billion World Trade Center Transportation Hub has finally opened to the public. Once widely regarded as a symbol of hope for post-9/11 New York, the project’s ballooning budget and security-related revisions gradually soured the opinions of the public and top design minds including Michael Graves and Peter Eisenman, and provoked a multitude of mocking nicknames ranging from “Calatrasaurus” to “squat hedgehog” to “kitsch dinosaur.” All the while, Calatrava urged critics to reserve their opinion until the project’s opening. Now that day has arrived - did Calatrava receive the vindication he was insistent would come? Read on for the critics’ takes.

Santiago Calatrava's WTC Transportation Hub to Open Next Week

12:00 - 25 February, 2016
Santiago Calatrava's WTC Transportation Hub to Open Next Week, via WTC Progress
via WTC Progress

Half of Santiago Calatrava's $4 billion World Trade Center Transportation Hub is set to "quietly" open next week, according to a report by Crain's New York. Heavily criticized for being seven years overdue and twice its original cost, the public project has been labeled a "symbol of excess" by some and a "legacy project" by others. Despite the criticism, its 355-foot-long operable "Oculus" is "breathtaking" says New York Times reporter David Dunlap. 

“It is necessary,” Calatrava told Dunlap, “that public space prevail... A balance is struck at Grand Central Terminal, and it will be here." 

BIG's 2 World Trade Center Stalls After Fox Withdraws

14:00 - 19 January, 2016
BIG's 2 World Trade Center Stalls After Fox Withdraws, © DBOX, Courtesy of BIG
© DBOX, Courtesy of BIG

Two major tenants, 21st Century Fox and News Corp have pulled plans to relocate to the BIG-designed 2 World Trade Center - the final building planned for the 16 acre site. 2 WTC was unveiled last summer after news broke that BIG would be replacing Foster + Partners as the building's architect. According to a report on The Wall Street Journal, the two media companies based their decision on the high cost of relocating; they plan to stay in their current Midtown site until at least 2025.

The project will be placed on hold until a new tenant is found. 

This SOM Archive Video Offers a Look Back at the Early Days of 3D Visualization

09:30 - 10 December, 2015

Until recently, the only options for providing clients and the public with visualizations of what a prospective building would look like were almost exclusively hand drawn renderings, or scale models built by hand. Both of these practices are still in use today, but now there is a much wider range of options with 3D modeling software providing the bulk of renderings, the growing presence of 3D printing, and even video fly-throughs with special effects that rival the latest Hollywood action movie. This 16mm film created by architecture firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) in 1984, and digitized by illustrator Peter Little, reminded us of what the early days of digital 3D modeling looked like.

REX to Design World Trade Center Performing Arts Building in New York

11:41 - 20 November, 2015
REX to Design World Trade Center Performing Arts Building in New York, WTC site. Image © James Ewing OTTO
WTC site. Image © James Ewing OTTO

A commission that was originally set to be Frank Gehry's, Brooklyn-based REX has been selected to design The Performing Arts Center at New York's World Trade Center site - PACWTC. REX was chosen over finalists Henning Larsen Architects and UNStudio through a "rigorous invitational process" that focused on the practices' experience with similar projects, including REX's Dee and Chales Wyly Theater in Dallas, Seattle Public Library and Vakko Fashion Center in Istanbul.

"Throughout the architectural selection process, REX presented us with an inspired vision. Joshua [Prince-Ramus] totally blew us away with his innovative ideas about how to present cutting-edge culture, but also about how to make the PAC relate to everyone who comes to the WTC site," said PACWTC director and president Maggie Boepple.  

Leaking Water Becomes Latest Setback for the World Trade Center Hub

12:00 - 8 November, 2015
Leaking Water Becomes Latest Setback for the World Trade Center Hub, © Joe Woolhead
© Joe Woolhead

Adding to the controversy surrounding its construction, Santiago Calatrava’s World Trade Center Hub - set to be the world’s most expensive transit hub with a now-estimated budget of $3.7 billion - has delayed its opening until the first half of 2016 due to leaking water, according to an article in The New York Times. The water, originating from the site of an office tower to-be at 3 World Trade Center has been traced back to workers constantly spraying water to handle dust while breaking up concrete, exposing the construction site of 3 World Trade Center to the elements. Though the centerpiece of the Hub, The Oculus, has nearly finished construction, several retail spaces of the Westfield World Trade Center luxury shopping centre have been affected by the leaking and the Westfield Corporation has decided to postpone the move-in of all stores until the problem has been fully addressed. Despite the problems, the Westfield Corporation remains optimistic of the final result that the Oculus will produce and are working aggressively to remedy the leaking.

Alternative Realities: 7 Radical Buildings That Could-Have-Been

09:30 - 21 September, 2015
Alternative Realities: 7 Radical Buildings That Could-Have-Been, Masterplan for the World Trade Center by Richard Meier & Partners, Eisenman Architects, Gwathmey Siegel and Associates, and Steven Holl Architects. Image © Jock Pottle. Courtesy Richard Meier & Partners Architects
Masterplan for the World Trade Center by Richard Meier & Partners, Eisenman Architects, Gwathmey Siegel and Associates, and Steven Holl Architects. Image © Jock Pottle. Courtesy Richard Meier & Partners Architects

In It’s A Wonderful Life the film’s protagonist George Bailey, facing a crisis of faith, is visited by his guardian angel, and shown an alternate reality where he doesn’t exist. The experience gives meaning to George’s life, showing him his own importance to others. With the increasing scale of design competitions these days, architectural “could-have-beens” are piling up in record numbers, and just as George Bailey's sense of self was restored by seeing his alternate reality, hypothesizing about alternative outcomes in architecture is a chance to reflect on our current architectural moment.

Today marks the one-year-anniversary of the opening of Phase 3 of the High Line. While New Yorkers and urbanists the world over have lauded the success of this industrial-utility-turned-urban-oasis, the park and the slew of other urban improvements it has inspired almost happened very differently. Although we have come to know and love the High Line of Diller Scofidio + Renfro and James Corner Field Operations, in the original ideas competition four finalists were chosen and the alternatives show stark contrasts in how things might have shaped up.

On this key date for one of the most crucial designs of this generation, we decided to look back at some of the most important competitions of the last century to see how things might have been different.

Joseph Marzella's second-place design for the Sydney Opera House. Image via The Daily Mail Designs for the Chicago Tribune Tower by Adolf Loos (left) and Bruno Taut, Walter Gunther, and Kurz Schutz (right). Image via skyscraper.org Design for the High Line by Zaha Hadid Architects with Balmori Associates, Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP and studio MDA. Image via University of Adelaide on Cargo Collective Moshe Safdie's design for the Centre Pompidou. Image Courtesy of Safdie Architects +16

World Trade Center River Wall May Be Leaking

16:00 - 26 August, 2015
World Trade Center River Wall May Be Leaking, Snøhetta's entrance building, with one of Michael Arad's Memorial Fountains in the foreground. Image © Jeff Goldberg / ESTO
Snøhetta's entrance building, with one of Michael Arad's Memorial Fountains in the foreground. Image © Jeff Goldberg / ESTO

Sounds of rushing water have been reported behind the walls of the lower concourses of the World Trade Center site. As DNAinfo reports, rumors say officials have found an underground leak within the newly built complex and fear that it may be coming from the 3,200-foot-long slurry wall that separates the site from the Hudson River. 

Inside Santiago Calatrava's WTC Transportation Hub in New York

12:45 - 31 July, 2015
© Michael Muraz
© Michael Muraz

Toronto-based architectural photographer Michael Muraz has shared with us some of the first images seen inside Santiago Calatrava's nearly complete World Trade Center Transportation Hub. Set to open this year, the "glorious" birdlike structure boasts a 355-foot-long operable "Oculus" - a "slice of the New York sky - that floods the hub's interior with natural light, all the way down 60-feet below street level to the PATH train platform. 

Though its been shamed for being years overdue and $2 billion over budget (making it the world's most expensive transit hub), the completed project is turning heads. Take a look for yourself after the break. 

© Michael Muraz © Michael Muraz © Michael Muraz © Michael Muraz +10

How Bjarke Ingels is Reshaping New York City's Architecture

14:34 - 27 July, 2015

Bjarke Ingels has become know for his “promiscuous hybrids" that are reshaping skylines worldwide. Now, after news of BIG's redesign of the 2 World Trade Center, Ingels is being credited for single-handedly transforming New York City's architecture. At the New York Times' Cities of Tomorrow conference last week, architecture critic Michael Kimmelman sat down with the 40-year-old Danish architect to discuss just how BIG is changing New York

Bjarke Ingels Talks About Two World Trade Center

09:30 - 15 June, 2015
Bjarke Ingels Talks About Two World Trade Center, © DBOX, Courtesy of BIG
© DBOX, Courtesy of BIG

Last week, after a month of speculation, BIG unveiled their plans for New York's Two World Trade Center, replacing Foster + Partners' design which although started on site, was stalled due to the financial crash of 2008. With the building's high profile, in just one week BIG's design has been the subject of intense scrutiny. In this interview, originally published by New York YIMBY as "Interview: Bjarke Ingels On New Design For 200 Greenwich Street, Aka Two World Trade Center," Nikolai Fedak talks to Bjarke Ingels about the design of the tower and why it was necessary to replace the scheme by Foster + Partners.

YIMBY sat down with Bjarke Ingels to talk about his firm’s design for 200 Greenwich Street, aka Two World Trade Center. Despite public outcry following the change from the Norman Foster version of the tower, BIG’s innovative and forward-thinking building will truly respond to the human needs of its tenants, while also punctuating the Downtown skyline with a 1,340-foot take on a classic ziggurat. We’ve also obtained a few additional renderings of the soon-to-be icon’s impact on the cityscape.

One of the design's rooftop gardens. Image © DBOX, Courtesy of BIG Lobby. Image © DBOX, Courtesy of BIG © DBOX, Courtesy of BIG © DBOX, Courtesy of BIG +9

Watch the 11-Year Construction of One World Trade Center in this Time-Lapse

14:00 - 6 June, 2015

In recognition of the opening of One World Observatory in New York City, EarthCam has published a full time-lapse of One World Trade Center's construction. Thousands of high-definition images capture the incredible undertaking of construction and planning that took place from October 2004 to Memorial Day 2015. The camera flies the viewer across the site, showing how the building and its surroundings have taken shape over the past 11 years. 

Insiders Tip BIG to Redesign Foster + Partners' World Trade Center 2 Tower

13:30 - 29 April, 2015
Insiders Tip BIG to Redesign Foster + Partners' World Trade Center 2 Tower , Orignial WTC scheme; Foster + Partners' WTC2 seen second tower from left. Image © Silverstein Properties
Orignial WTC scheme; Foster + Partners' WTC2 seen second tower from left. Image © Silverstein Properties

A new report from the Wall Street Journal suggests that BIG may replace Foster + Partners to realize the World Trade Center 2 (WTC2) tower - the final tower planned to be built on Ground Zero. The 79-story tower, originally designed in 2006, was stalled due to the economic crash of 2008. 

According to the report, 21st Century Fox and News Corp have "tipped" BIG to redesign the tower should they strike an agreement with project backers Silverstein Properties and The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to move into the tower. If the deal goes through, the two companies would occupy nearly half of the building - enough to kickstart development. 

6 Takeaways From NYMag's Article On Calatrava's $4 Billion WTC Station

08:00 - 19 March, 2015
6 Takeaways From NYMag's Article On Calatrava's $4 Billion WTC Station, © Bedel Saget/The New York Times
© Bedel Saget/The New York Times

Ask any person involved in the construction of Santiago Calatrava's World Trade Center Transportation Hub, and they will probably admit that the world's most expensive train station has not been a PR success. In fact things have gotten so bad that a recent article by Andrew Rice for New York Magazine describes the gradual opening of the building later this year as coming "at long last and great cost, to both the government and his reputation," adding that "a decade ago, Calatrava would have made any short list of the world’s most esteemed architects. Today, many within the profession are aghast at what they see as his irresponsibility."

But, unlike much of the press coverage that has greeted Calatrava in recent years, the New York Magazine article is much more forgiving, taking the time to investigate the twists and turns of the project's controversial 12-year history and offering the architect the opportunity to give his side of the story. Read on after the break for a breakdown of six takeaways from the article.