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The New Yorker

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Our Local Correspondents November 4, 1972 Issue


By Edith Iglauer

October 27, 1972

The New Yorker, November 4, 1972 P. 130

OUR LOCAL CORRESPONDENTS about the excavation involved in the construction of the World Trade Center, the largest bldg. in the world with twin towers of 110 stories each. The Center, located at the southern end of Manhattan, is the largest bldg. job ever attempted. It presented unprecedented problems in the construction of its foundation. Writer details the construction from 7 yrs. ago to the present. The bldg. is under the aegis of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, who had to condemn 164 bldgs. to obtain the present site. One of these, the Marine Midland Bank Bldg. took 4 months to demolish and the whole site took 1 yr. to clear. The Port Authority plans to add about 24 acres to Manhattan with the rock & dirt from the excavation. This new area will be called Battery City Park. Tells about Manhattan Schist, the rock structure extending underground as far west as Pennsylvania and resultant problems with digging. Explains methods used to construct a system of interior concrete partitions & floors 6 stories below the street. Tells about the firm involved: Slattery Associates, West Street Associates, & Icanda, a Canadian firm affiliated to the Milanese based ICOS. The first 2 were responsible for underpinning the $27 million cost. Tells about construction of a huge basement called the Bathtub and the use of the slurry-trench method. Tells about problems of maintaining subway service and splicing and relocating telephone wires. Tells about various trips through several tunnels and passages and the Bathtub.

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