Steel Shots: World Trade Center, 14 Years Later

The next tower to open at the World Trade Center site will be 3WTC, which has risen to about half its final height and is slated for completion in 2018. The skyscraper is planned to be 1,155 ft tall with 80 stories. Owen Steel Company, Columbia, S.C. (an AISC Member and Certified fabricator) is providing the structural steel fabrication services for the project. (Photo: Jacinda Collins, AISC) 

For the past several years, NYC’s World Trade Center site has been gradually rebuilding, structure by structure. 4WTC was the first tower to open at the complex in late 2013, followed by 1WTC last November. The National September 11 Memorial and Museum opened last spring. For more on these steel-framed WTC projects, see the MSC articles “Four at the Fore” (04/2015), “Rising to the Top” (02/2014) and “Trident True” (01/2014).

The new WTC Transportation Hub has begun opening to the public. The Hub’s winged gateway, also known as the Oculus, uses more than 10,000 tons of structural steel to create its distinctive shape. Designed by internationally acclaimed architect Santiago Calatrava, its street-level entrance features a curved rib roof, which will be topped with a skylight that is intended to retract for 102 minutes each year on the 9/11 anniversary, and soaring arches that lead commuters to the Hub’s underground PATH rail system.

Plans for the last WTC tower, 2 WTC, were recently unveiled. The 80-plus-story, 1,270-ft tower  will be the capstone in the redevelopment of the WTC site and the final component of the revitalization of Lower Manhattan. It’s being designed as seven separate building volumes stacked on top of each other and will be built with a concrete core and external structural steel frame. For more on the WTC site, visit

Here’s what the WTC site looks like now, as captured by AISC’s Jacinda Collins a few days ahead of today’s observance of 9/11.