1 WTC Base to Be Glass-Clad After All;
Permasteelisa Wins Contract
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) board has approved
a new cost-effective architectural design for the exterior cladding system
of 1 World Trade Center (WTC), and has awarded the contract to Permasteelisa
of Windsor, Conn.
The base of 1 WTC was originally slated to include prismatic glass, but
in May that plan was abandoned due to cost and fabrication challenges
(see October 2011 USGlass, page 42, for related article).
The exterior cladding system will cover the 185-foot tall secure base
of the tower, and will consist of stainless steel slat panels around the
building’s concrete base covered with glass fins. The glass fins will
reflect light during the day and cover the secure podium structures.
“Approving this design is a cost-effective solution to a complex problem,”
says David Samson, PANYNJ chairman. “It provides a practical way to cover
the tower’s secure base, and give it an innovative, inviting look for
the thousands of workers who will be employed there and the millions of
tourists who will visit it.”
This new design is significantly less expensive than the original design,
and the PANYNJ board authorized $37.2 million towards project and contract
Installation of the redesigned façade system will begin in 2013
and is expected to be completed by the end of that year. Work currently
is under way to install more than 12,000 traditional ultra-clear glass
panels to the building’s steel frame.
“One World Trade Center will be the strongest office building ever built,
and the cladding system that has been selected for the base is one of
the elements that ensures we will meet that goal,” says Bill Baroni, executive
director of PANYNJ. “Not only will this system be cost-effective, but
it will also provide a unique façade benefiting an iconic building.”
Permasteelisa and Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP in New York, the
architectural firm that created the new design for the exterior cladding
system, had not returned phone calls at press time.
Glaziers Welcome Contractor Repeal Bill
Glass industry professionals are welcoming the repeal of the contractor
withholdings rule. On November 21, Obama signed into law a bill that overturned
an earlier measure that required federal, state and local governments
to withhold 3 percent of payments to contractors until they paid their
federal taxes. Former President George W. Bush signed the original measure
into law back in 2006, but it has yet to be implemented.
“Anything that eases the economic challenges facing the construction industry
benefit not only our industry, but the entire economy,” says Mic Patterson,
director of strategic development at the Enclos Advanced Technology Studio
in Eagan, Minn. “This is especially true for contract glaziers and the
other specialty subcontractors that feel the pinch of waiting for money
on the upstream side, while having to honor net industry terms on the
downstream vendor, fabricator and material supply side, thereby already
playing an integral role in financing construction projects. We are encouraged
by this development and look forward to its speedy implementation.”
Although Attila Arian, president of Seele in New York City, notes that
government jobs usually are not a source of business for European-based
companies such as his, due to the Buy America clause, he says, “We know
that in the economic environment a lot of small- and medium-size glazing
contractors depend on government jobs to make ends meet. Cutting into
the already low margins by imposing tax withholdings would have been a
move in the wrong direction. We are very glad to see that the House has
repealed the 3 percent tax withholding [measure]. The economy will rebound
when small- and medium-size companies start hiring, and not when they
file bankruptcy because they cannot meet their financial obligation.”
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No reproduction of any type without expressed written permission.