After nearly $4 billion and over a decade of anticipation, the long-delayed World Trade Center Transportation Hub finally has an official opening date. Designed by Santiago Calatrava, the bird-like Oculus hub is set to open in the first week of March.
Considered the most expensive and delayed train station in the world, the WTC transportation hub is expected to accommodate 200,000 commuters and visitors once completed. With an original anticipated opening of 2007, the megaproject has been slowed by ballooning costs and scandals. Major delays and bad press have unsurprisingly hit Calatrava’s reputation hard. Yet, once the ambitious structure opens, we expect that the public will be more forgiving once they step inside the magnificent steel-winged structure.
Filled with soft natural light, the dramatic and operable Oculus is framed by curving white ribs that frame a space reminiscent of a cathedral nave. The 225,000-square-foot, white-marble main concourse will also be home to a high-end mall operated by Westfield Corporation; however, the mall’s opening will take a while longer with the exception of Eataly, one of its retail tenants, which is expected to open in spring.
Described by World Trade Center website as the most integrated network of underground pedestrian connections in New York City, the WTC Transportation Hub’s concourse will offer connections to 11 different subway lines; the Port Authority Trans-Hudson (PATH) rail system; Battery Park City Ferry Terminal; the World Trade Center Memorial Site; WTC Towers 1, 2, 3, and 4; the World Financial Center and the Winter Garden.