OHNY: 7 World Trade Center

Since it opened in 2006, the lights of 7 World Trade Center have been one of its most remarkable features. Glowing beacons in the night, they bathe the surrounding area in dramatic tones of blue, white and red.

Tonight, as part of Open House New York Weekend, Michael Hennes, the designer who worked on the lighting project, took visitors around the building and into the lobby. He displayed some rejected sketches, explained the rationale behind the design, and showed how and why the lights work as they do (including some malfunctions that have occurred).

It was an (ahem) illuminating experience. I’ve walked by these lights dozens of times, and I’ll never view them the same way again.

Illumination of 7 WTC
250 Greenwich St, Barclay St, New York
Sat:7:30 pm tour with lighting designer.
building date: 2006
architect: Skidmore, Owings and Merrill

Michael Hennes of Cline Bettridge Bernstein Lighting Design will talk about the color-changing lighting within the lobby ceiling, exterior podium screen wall and 80-foot-height parapet changes from the white light of day to a vivid blue at night, while an interactive motion detection system triggers a deeper blue stripe of light that “follows” pedestrians as they walk along the sidewalk.

Everything around the building is bathed in blue light

This Jeff Koons sculpture is bright red; the lights make it appear violet

Side view from Barclay Street

In the lobby, Hennes has the lights adjusted

The crowd listens to Hennes

The building was constructed by Silverstein Properties

Animated Jenny Holzer art installation in the lobby

The white lights come up

Red lights flood the lobby

Flowers on the desk turn red

Blue lights start to come back

Looking at the elevator banks

Elevators are controlled by the user’s ID cards

Frosted glass interior of elevator car

Unmarked doorway in the corridor

Open House New York Weekend
Cline Bettridge Bernstein Lighting Design
Jenny Holzer
Metropolis Magazine: Ground Zero’s Saving Grace

5 Responses to OHNY: 7 World Trade Center

  1. Esther says:

    Oh, this is gorgeous!!! Those lights are wonderful!!!


  2. Olivier says:

    la sculpture de Jeff Koons avec cette couleur bleue est magnifique.
    the sculpture of Jeff Koons with this blue colour is splendid.


  3. Jessica M says:

    cool! thanks for the tour =)


  4. Jack 3d says:

    What’s up, I just started reading this blog – thanks for the good work. I wanted to inform you that it’s not displaying properly on the BlackBerry Browser (I have a Pearl). Either way, I’m now subscribed to the RSS feed on my PC, so thanks!


  5. Jack3d says:

    Good Day, I posted approx. 12 months ago explaining that I couldn’t read your posts correctly. I am not sure if you edited your website but I can now see it the right way, thanks. I’m using a Blackberry Curve.


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