Eager to avoid creating a fortress that overshadows the World Trade Center memorial, the architects of the Freedom Tower unveiled a new approach today. They would clad its 187-foot-high, bomb-resistant concrete base in a screen of glass prisms rather than metal panels.Basically what they're saying is that there will be no store fronts and no street life around the new World Trade Center's star attraction. People will enter the building like cattle and leave like cattle.
The old World Trade Center towers were ugly and spartan, perhaps the largest relic of Le Corbusier. Instead of a park complex with office space, a real opportunity exists to carve an urban neighborhood out of the site. Excess space wasted on parkland could be used to provide much-needed housing for the city. Tall buildings can fit perfectly well into the New York City landscape, much like the Empire State Building does.