The new pavilion, the centerpiece of the World Financial Center redevelopment underway in Manhattan’s Financial District, topped out Nov. 20. Thornton Tomasetti is providing structural design services to Brookfield Properties for the project. The glass and steel structure with 8,000 sf of space will serve as the connector between the underground pedestrian passageway from the World Trade Center and Fulton Street transit hubs to the World Financial Center and the Hudson River ferries to the west. Its most striking feature is a pair of 53-ft, tree-shaped, sculptural steel columns that support the entire structure and provide the main lateral resistance system. A significant challenge was implementing Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects’ vision of a continuous seamless pipe while ensuring the feasibility of erection. We collaborated with contractor Metropolitan-Walters LLC on the design of the heavy six-inch steel pipe columns that intersect at two planes. The pavilion’s complex foundation system, which spans an underground passageway and existing subway train line, consists of a series of six caissons along with a pile cap for the former north pedestrian bridge destroyed on Sept. 11, 2001. Construction is scheduled for completion in summer 2013.
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