Still in a raw state, it’s already cause to celebrate. The nearly $4 billion, largest, most fought-over piece of the puzzle in downtown’s epic skyline restoration turns out to be a gentle giant, graceful and humane as the Twin Towers were not.
Architectural eggheads will sneer at it, but the masses will just as surely love it.
Include me in the common rabble.
What scant pleasure the old towers afforded lay in their tacky duplication. The thumbs-up tuning fork lent their banal bulk a semblance of wit; imagine how utterly awful one of them would have looked without the other.
The new One World Trade Center requires no identical sibling to draw stares or smiles. Although we won’t see it whole for another year, my heart lifts from every vantage point — from narrow Fulton Street, where it thunders skyward beyond the shabby old storefronts; from the Brooklyn Heights Esplanade, revealing its prideful place in the lower Manhattan panorama; and from beneath the Manhattan Bridge in Dumbo, a perspective that invites the Frank Gehry-designed 8 Spruce St. into a surprise pas de deux.