Like many of the projects taken on by the Port Authority in the past decade, the World Trade Center Subway and Transportation Hub has required more money and time than initially projected. However, as the light at the end of this tunnel becomes more apparent so too does the high quality of its design and construction.
Designed by the Spanish-born and Swiss-based architect, Santiago Calatrava, the World Trade Center station and terminal will sport a cathedral-like folding roof with an exterior oval -shapedfacade. The World Trade Center station will also feature high-tech signal systems, cutting edge fare collection equipment, and temperature-controlled platforms.
The station’s spacious concourse will allow commuters and visitors alike to access connections to the PATH, MTA, and street car services. In addition to the practical transit purposes of the World Trade Center station, commuters will be serviced by numerous retail and culinary venues.
“The World Trade Center Transportation Hub is going to serve a critical, functional transportation purpose” but will also be “viewed as a grand public space,” said the Port Authority director, Patrick Foye to the New York Times.
As of now, the Port Authority slates the entire project bill to reach $3.94 billion, after originally being estimated at only $2 billion in cost. More over the timetable for construction has more than doubled, from 4 years to 10.
Already,however, onlookers in the Financial District at Church Street have noticed an aboveground, oval-shaped entrance known as the Oculus, to have taken form. The sinewy ceiling trusts of the mezzanine are also in place. Slowly, things are coming together.
Architecture aside, the first PATH train platforms are expected to be in service by late 2013, while the entire World Trade Center station will not be up and running until late 2015. This station will connect the PATH to the Seventh and Eighth Avenue subway lines, the Fulton Street Transit Center and to Battery Park City/Staten Island ferry service.