Thu., May 2, 2013 2:30pm (EDT)

Massive Spire Lifted To Top Of New World Trade Center Building
By Scott Neuman
Updated: 12 months ago

The 408-foot spire is hoisted onto a temporary platform at the top of One World Trade Center on Thursday.
The 408-foot spire is hoisted onto a temporary platform at the top of One World Trade Center on Thursday.
Construction workers applauded Thursday as a crane raised the flag-draped spire of One World Trade Center to the top of the skyscraper.

When they install the spire at a later date, it will cap the structure at a symbolic 1,776 feet. The Port Authority says the spire, which acts as a fixture for various antennas, will bump the 104-story building to be the tallest in the Western Hemisphere, reports New Jersey's The Star-Ledger.

However, as the newspaper reports:

"If the tip of the spire is not counted ... as the tower's architectural top, it will be the hemisphere's third tallest building ... behind Willis Tower [formerly the Sears Tower] and the 1,389-foot Trump Tower, [both] in Chicago."

The Willis and Trump towers are ranked the ninth and 12th tallest buildings in the world, respectively, according to the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat.

The new tower the primary structure in the group of buildings commemorating the World Trade Center buildings destroyed in the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 sits at the northwest corner of the site, where the 72-story Four World Trade Center and other buildings are also under construction, The Associated Press says.

Construction on the new WTC skyscraper began Aug. 30, 2006.

The spire-raising had been scheduled to occur on Monday, but was delayed by poor weather.


Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.