Monday, June 11, 2012

One World Trade Center: Managing the World's Largest, Emotionally Charged Complex Project Build

With One World Trade Center recently surpassing the Empire State Building at New York's tallest structure and President Obama now scheduled to visit the construction site this week our thoughts here at the offices of ProjectWorld and The World Congress for Business Analysts in New York are turning to our upcoming keynote by Jim Durkin, SVP, WTC Transportation Hub, Tishman Construction Corp.
View of 1 WTC construction from the author's apartment

Durkin will be presenting "World Trade Center: Managing the World's Largest, Emotionally Charged Complex Project Build" this September at PW&WCBA For the thousands involved with the $18 billion redevelopment of the 16-acre WTC site, the common thread is patriotism, indomitable spirit and a collective will to succeed. Durkin will report on the complex overlapping infrastructure at the WTC and how it calls for mass collaboration and coordination.

According to the August 2011 issue of Engineering News-Record, "depending on who is counting, there are at least seven major projects currently under way, each with its own team and schedule but not its own site, at least not below grade. All the projects overlap in a four-level basement. Consequently, the work is also loaded with challenges"

Durkin was quoted as saying “It's all coordination—coordinating with PATH, the memorial, the streets, towers 1, 2, 3 and 4, and the vehicle security center.”

Beyond coordinating with the many entities involved with the project, there have also been various changes to the design over the course of construction.

This piece in the New York Times addressed one of the project's challenges: "As design moved to the testing phase, it became clear that the prismatic glass simply had too many technical problems to overcome and at a budget that was not cost effective,” said John Kelly, a spokesman for the Port Authority. “We have been finalizing a design that will be far more practical while being both distinctive and magnificent."

Despite challenges faced (and what project of this scale doesn't face challenges?), the project continues on and the structure is rising an average of 9.5 feet a week. Completion of the tower is anticipated in 2013. Join us for Durkin's session at ProjectWorld & World Congress for Business Analysts for some actionable insights from the process.

As a reader of our blog we'd like to offer you an exclusive 15% discount off the standard registration rate with code PW12BLOG. For more information on the ProjectWorld & World Congress for Business Analysts and to register, visit our webpage.

Michelle LeBlanc is a Social Media Strategist at IIR USA and the voice behind the @Project_World twitter. She may be reached at

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