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 Friday, 3 January, 2003, 16:44 GMT
World Trade Center designs questioned
A thin layer of snow covers the ground at the site of the World Trade Center in New York
The master-plan must be ready by the end of January

Ideas for redevelopment of the World Trade Center site, presented last December amid a blaze of publicity, are being questioned by specialists.

New York's former Mayor Rudy Giuliani
Former mayor Rudy Giuliani says no one will want to work that high
Models, with soaring towers and skyscrapers were at the heart of almost every plan presented by seven international teams of architects.

Four of the designs include what would be the tallest buildings in the world.

Architects were told to be bold and take risks.

But for all their inventiveness and imagination, real-estate experts and those involved in the complicated planning process say that none of these super-tall towers will probably be built.

Fear factor

Firstly, there is the fear factor. Property developers believe that a building taller than 60 storeys would be hard to market given the public's concern about the possibility of another terrorist attack.
One of the proposed designs for rebuilding the World Trade Center by Think
Experts say none of super-tall towers will probably be built

New York's former Mayor, Rudy Giuliani, seems to think so too, saying that no one will want to work that high.

Then there is the harsh reality of the property market.

There are still hectares of vacant office space in Lower Manhattan already - it could take many years just to fill the existing commercial space.

Hard decisions

According to the chairman of the Empire State Development Corporation, the real value of the architects' designs is that they each show how space for a memorial could work alongside commercial development.

Office buildings, he said, will be years down the line.

But there is one very important deadline now looming - by the end of January, the planners have to come up with a master plan for the site.

Some hard decisions will have to be made on what is the most viable and affordable option for this emotionally-charged site.


Talking PointTALKING POINT
One of the WTC designsRebuilding NY
What do you think of the new WTC designs?
See also:

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