The World Trade Center was conceived in the early 1960s by the Downtown-Lower Manhattan Development Association to revitalize the seedy radio row dominated by electronic stores. Chase Manhattan Bank chairman David Rockefeller, founder of the development association, and his brother, New York governor Nelson Rockefeller, pushed hard for the project, insisting it would benefit the entire city.
In 1962, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey began plans to build the center. Minoru Yamasaki and Associates of Michigan was hired as architect. Eventually, Yamasaki decided on two huge towers. Critics charged that a modern monolith would rob New York of character, ruin the skyline, disrupt television reception, and strain city services. However, the project was approved and construction began in 1966.
World Trade Center Stats
200,000 tons of steel
425,000 cubic yards of concrete
12,000 miles of electric cables
Had its own zip code, 10048
Had 110 floors
208 ft by 208 ft at base
Weighed 500,000 tons
1,368 ft high (north tower)
1,362 ft high (south tower)
Contained 198 miles of heating ducts
97 elevators for passengers, 6 for freight