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Reconstruction well underway.

The terrorist bomb took the path of least resistance. Holding onto a hard hat as a visitor looks up at the sky through a 20-foot foot hole, it is quickly apparent that there was no way One World Trade Center -- a white totem rising up from the party wall and visibly unscathed -- would have come down.

The van full of explosives was parked next to this wall. And though a section of concrete was destroyed, here at ground zero, only a small piece of wall bracing is missing, while another is slightly twisted and bent. The uprights stand strong and tail.

True, a hole was punched upward and downward, and concrete walls and floors were blown out hundreds of feet away, but all in the opposite direction. All toward the Vista Hotel.

On six underground levels, workers have been active round the clock. Hundreds of yards of concrete walls have been reconstructed everywhere and new piping gleams as it snakes across the ceiling and walls.

The noise gets 1ouder and welding sparks fly brighter as the visitor approaches the main work site where dozens of people are banging, riveting; welding and creating floors where there weren't any left -- only a tremendous hole in the ground. Near a precipice that bends eerily into a dusty, lighted work area, an upright girder and the surrounding concrete floor has been lifted with the force of the explosion, like a great tree whose roots have pushed up but held through the storm.

Escorted by police and Port Authority personnel, the visitor must clamber over and through dusty temporary bracing and climb up well-worn wooden planking to get from one level to another.

The rubble for the most part has been gathered and carted away by the FBI but the ground is treacherous near the main work area with exposed bracing, concrete chips and many holes where the floor was blown away.

An overlooked crumpled grease can lies near a twisted duct on the air conditioning and generating level. Valves as large as televisions surround the huge compressors while long wide pipes are stock piled, awaiting their turn to be connected. Until that work is completed around May 1, air conditioning is being hooked up to the buildings through mobile trailers parked outside the Towers.

Visitors to the Towers are screened by studious new personnel who examine ID and phone the tenant to receive clearance.

Walking around the top of the reopened observatory, it is easy to see why the spectacular 50-mile views have attracted so many world-class tenants. It is also a testament to the bravery of helicopter pilots who landed that terrible Friday on a tiny pad amidst a forest of antennas to rescue stranded people.
COPYRIGHT 1993 Hagedorn Publication
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1993, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Title Annotation:reconstruction of World Trade Center proceeds after 1993 bombing
Author:Weiss, Lois
Publication:Real Estate Weekly
Date:Apr 28, 1993
Words:453
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