The World Trade Center opened its distinctive towers during one of New York City's most difficult decades, a beacon of modernity in a city beleaguered by debt and urban decay. Welcome to the 1970s.
This year, believe it or not, marks the 20th anniversary of the attacks on the Twin Towers on September 11, 2001. Today there’s an entire generation that only knows the World Trade Center as an emblem of tragedy.
But people sometimes forget that the World Trade Center, designed by Japanese-American architect Minoru Yamasaki, was a very complicated addition to the New York skyline when it officially opened in 1973.
While it might be fun to think of New York City in the 1970s through the lens of places like Studio 54 or CBGB, it was really the Twin Towers that redefined New York.
The journey to build the world's tallest building and its expansive complex of office towers and underground shops began in an effort by David Rockefeller to stimulate development in Manhattan's fading Financial District.
By the time Port Authority got onboard to fund the project, the Twin Towers were bonded together with another vital project -- a commuter train from New Jersey.
The World Trade Center inspired strong opinions from critics and the public alike, but eventually many grew to admire the strange towers which marked the skyline.
And some, the Twin Towers became objects of obsession.
FEATURING: The insane, completely outlandish and ultimately successful feat of acrobatics by a very bold French tightrope walker.
PLUS: An interview with with Kate Monaghan Connolly of the National September 11 Memorial and Museum about how that institution memorializes those lost in the tragedy while still celebrating the technological marvels that once stood there.
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