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wtcmodel

The American Architectural Foundation is donating a giant architectural model of the World Trade Center to the museum that now resides at ground zero.

The massive 7-foot, gleaming towers were used to pitch architect Minoru Yamasaki’s design for the site. The foundation brought in a restoration team to spiff-up the model which was, of course, built to be temporary. For more details please check out the National Trust’s Preservation Nation blog. You should be reading it anyway.

I’m happy the model will be included in the September 11 Museum’s collection. The model is a work of art unto itself. I think it presents as good memorial to the tragedy as anything else I’ve seen. This model, built before the building, represents all the hope, community and team-work that go into a major architectural project. It is a symbol of the enterprising nature of humankind.

I can remember people discussing the design for the memorial immediately after the attacks. Given all that thought I have to say I am a little disappointed with the memorial competition entries and what the committee eventually decided to build. None of what was proposed has the simple clarity of the Staten Island September 11th Memorial.

The two, bent, wing-like forms of the Staten Island memorial easily suggest the towers and their absence from the view. The the fact that they are undelivered”postcards”, simply but profoundly expresses the sense of longing the loss of so many Staten Islanders brought to their community. It is one of my favorite memorials.

 

Memorials are built conscious of their place in history. This makes them interesting in the study of architectural history but can also stifle their artistic integrity. I feel like this may have happened at ground zero.

What are some of your favorite memorials? why? Do you prefer the simple, suggestive forms of modern memorials or the more triumphant early modes? Comment, I would love to hear from you.

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Credit Flickr.com/photos/flyian
Credit Flickr.com/photos/flyian

The blog Contemporist has a post up with tantalizing pictures of the (formerly TWA but now) Jet Blue Flight center.

Credit: OTG Management

Terminal 5, as it is known at JFK airport ,is one of my favorite buildings of all time.  Its dramatic swooping exterior suggests it is in permanent motion, which is quite a feat for steel wrapped in concrete.  In 2001 the building fell into disuse as those who appreciated it pondered how to keep it in circulation.  Luckily it was bought up a few years later by the aesthetically conscious bargain airline JetBlue to expand their presence at the busy hub.  They’ll be re-opening in just a couple months on October 1st, right in the middle of an well-timed retrospective of its architect, Eero Saarinen’s work at Minneapolis’ Walker Art center.

The photo posted by Contemporist shows an interior that at least suggests the oh-so-midcentury curves and undulations of the former lounges that graced the cavernous monument.  Other photos found in New York Magazine are not quite as considerate of the buildings past.  That is appropriate as the the rehabilitation of the building has been hit-and-miss from a preservation perspective.  Modern comfort and security needs dictated many changes.  The most starling of these was the amputation of one of the terminals eating places the, Trumpet lounge in one architectural historian called a “stupid, stupid move

JetBlue
Credit: JetBlue

Despite the controversy is is good to know the landmark will re-open with at least some of its integrity intact.  I wish I could be their on opening day.

Other TWA / JetBlue Terminal 5 links:

Article from Galinksy.com

More vintage photos of the TWA FlightCenter lounges

A ton of great contemporary photos of the JetBlue Flight Center

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