By Ann Mercogliano | PIX11
It is a milestone at the new World Trade Center: The first tower will soon officially open at the site ravaged by terrorism 12 years earlier.
PIX11 News got a special look inside 4 World Trade Center, and saw the emergency protocols that are in place in the tower that’s just feet from where the Twin Towers stood.
There was an emergency drill inside 4 World Trade Center on Monday night, one of many performed at the building. Soon, a spokesperson for 4 World Trade Center said there will even be stairway safety drills. The building’s architect, Gary Kamemoto, said there are many more emergency protections in place than were present in the original World Trade Center.
“There were post 9/11 guidelines that were implemented,” said Kamemoto.
Kamemoto said there are concrete cores in the building, and a structure that is designed to be much more robust.
Four World Trade Center is now almost ready for tenants. After five years of construction, Kamemoto said the 72-story-building is equipped for anything.
The building is 2.5 million square feet. Each floor is 44,000 square feet.
We spoke with WTC developer Larry Silverstein inside the blast-resistant lobby of 4 World Trade.
“These are all buildings built on life saving factors,” said Silverstein.
From one of the highest floors, you can see a full view of One World Trade Center, New York’s tallest building and the symbolic successor of the Twin Towers in the skyline. It remains under construction.
Down below you can see the footprints of the destroyed towers. From the 68th floor, it’s a beautiful view, but also an emotional one.
“I think it’s a sense of optimism,” added Kamemoto.
For the first time in 12 years, members of the public can also freely walk on and around part of the World Trade Center site.
Four World Trade Center will officially open up on Wednesday, but Silverstein told PIX11 New that tenants can likely move into the building in middle of next year.
Four other buildings will also eventually open on the 16 acre site. So far, the building’s tenants include the Port Authority and the city of New York.
Silverstein said half of the building had been leased out.
View video here.