What does a city’s skyline represent? One World Trade Center may not become the USA’s tallest building, after all

What does a city’s skyline represent?

The new One World Trade Center : Not America’s tallest building, after all?

By The Week’s Editorial Staff | The Week

New York was supposed to finally retake the skyscraper crown from Chicago. A local spat may deep-six that plan
On April 30, One World Trade Center in lower Manhattan became the tallest building in New York City, well on its way to becoming, when fully completed, the tallest building in the U.S. But there’s one problem: The building’s owners — the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and developer Douglas Durst — are messing with the plans, much to the chagrin of the architect. Because of industry rules, the 104-story tower will only reach its symbolically important 1,776-foot height if its 408-foot needle is enclosed, as designed, in an ornamental white shell. If the shell is scrapped — as the building’s owners are insisting — the needle’s added height may not be counted in the record books. Will this spat really end the World Trade Center’s hopes of taking the tallest-building crown? Here’s what you should know:

Why remove the spire shell?
Money and logistics. Ditching the twisting fiberglass-and-steel casing around the antenna would save $20 million, according to Durst, and solve the daunting challenge of ever trying to repair the shell. If one of the enclosure’s fiberglass panels needed fixing, says Durst spokesman Jordan Barowitz, workers would have to scale the spire, use a cable to haul a 2,000-pound panel up 1,776 feet from the ground, then install it. “This is the stuff of Mission Impossible, not skyscraper construction,” he tells the AP.

Okay. But why would a spire count while an antenna wouldn’t?
There’s actually some heated disagreement among architects over what counts in building height. But according to the Chicago-based Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH), the most-accepted arbiter on building heights, an antenna doesn’t cut it. Antennas, water towers, masts, and other “functional-technical structures” are add-ons rather than integral parts of the building, the CTBUH says. Spires, on the other hand, are “typically a permanent structure and part of the architecture and artistic expression of the building.” Durst maintains that the building’s needle, while a functional antenna, should count as a spire; the architect, Skidmore Owings & Merrill’s David Childs, says it shouldn’t. The CTBUH hasn’t weighed in yet.

What buildings are taller than One World Trade Center?
The tallest building in the U.S. is Chicago’s Willis Tower (formerly the Sears Tower), at 1,451 feet (not including its own antennas). Without counting the 408-foot needle, One World Trade Center would be just 1,368 feet tall, the same height as the fallen World Trade Center towers it is replacing. At that height, the World Trade Center would be demoted to the No. 3 tallest building in the U.S., trumped by both the Willis Tower and another Chicago skyscraper erected by Donald Trump.

If the shell goes, does One WTC lose?
“The short answer is we don’t know yet,” says CTBUH spokesman Kevin Brass. “There is no doubt that this change will raise questions about the height.” But the council won’t make a final decision while One World Trade Center is a work in progress. “Building designs often change during construction,” the CTBUH says, “and final ratification of the height and formal recognition on the list of 100 Tallest Completed Building in the World occur after the building is officially completed.” Stay tuned.

http://theweek.com/article/slideshow/227895/the-new-world-trade-center-not-americas-tallest-building-after-all

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Chicago’s Willis Tower (Sears Tower) on right and Trump International Hotel and Tower in center

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What’s it all mean….cities growing skylines give residences and visitors a positive economic impression, making people proud
 
What does a skyline mean for a city’s image? Salt Lake City answers this question
 
Video: Salt Lake City
 

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Video: Moscow, Russia growing skyline
 

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Video: Mexico City, Mexico
 
 
Houston, Texas
 
 
Denver, Colorado
 
 
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
 
San Francisco, California
 
Detroit, Michigan
 
Cleveland, Ohio
 
New Orleans, Louisiana
 
Cincinnati, Ohio
 
Tampa, Florida
 
Dallas, Texas
 
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
 
Paris, France
 
Guangzhou, Guangdong, China
 
 
Lagos, Nigeria
 
 
Video: Lagos, Nigeria’s future skyline in Lekki Free Trade Zone
 
Nairobi, Kenya
 
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
 
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Many cities that are not well known around the world also thrive to grow their skylines
 
Phoenix, Arizona
 
Birmingham, Alabama
 
 
Richmond, Virginia
 
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
 
 
 
Mobile, Alabama
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Video: Charlotte, North Carolina
 
 
Video: Boston
 
Video: Miami
 
 
Video: Atlanta
 
 
Video: Toronto, Canada
 
Video: New York City, Manhattan
 
 
Video: Chicago
 

Video: São Paulo, Brazil

 
 
Video: London, England, United Kingdom
 
 
Video: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
 
 
 
 
 

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