The Honor To See, 24/7, The Tallest Building In The Western Hemisphere

I’ve had quite a journey with the World Trade Center in New York City.

When the dastardly act of 9/11 happened, I was on vacation in a remote village in South India. When the news spread in the US, it was evening in India, and since we’d been out all day and were exhausted, I’d retired to bed without watching television. Next morning, my grandfather woke me up to tell me the news, and I’d spent the rest of the day in front of the television. It was hard to believe.

In late 2002, I had an opportunity to visit Washington, DC and New York City, but couldn’t travel due to personal reasons. In 2008, my wife and I moved to the US, renting an apartment that gave us the downtown Manhattan view.

Of the four towers being built in downtown today, the Freedom Tower is almost complete and will be the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere and fourth tallest in the world. We’ve been witnessing its growth from our apartment; the incredible progression from infancy to adulthood has been a stupendous feat; the skills, the workmanship, the will, and the conviction to regain what was lost.

Never taking the apartment view for granted, we’ve been awestruck – mornings and evenings, days and nights, weeks and months – by its evolution, majestic presence, and symbolism of hope and freedom.

This is how it looks now from the living room.
2008: When we moved to the US and into this apartment, there was no Freedom Tower in view, and though construction had begun, the project was taking longer due to disputes among business leaders, real estate lobby, and civic organizations. We loved the moon in the picture.
2009: Here, we spotted the building for the first time; cranes promising speedy work.
2010: It appeared the tower announced its arrival: start noticing me.
2011: The structure looked tall, standing out in the twilight. Seventy floors up.
2012: The Tribute in Light gave us hope, year after year, in the autumn. Here, the Freedom Tower is making its presence felt. Ninety floors up.
2013: The day after the 408-foot spire was installed on top of the structure, giving the tower its 1776 feet, and 104 floors. Apparently, 1776 was when the US got its independence.
2014: With the winter leaving us, the dawn gave this view a golden hue. Yachts were back.
The night view

24 thoughts on “The Honor To See, 24/7, The Tallest Building In The Western Hemisphere

  1. wonderful, wonderful – and I am coming back to soak up this photos more – and to read the post fully – but I love the comparing – very cool photos too – ! 🙂

  2. Awesome post….awesome pictures, Mahesh. So lucky to see the transformation from conception to birth. What a view! 🙂 Somehow, it’s what I pictured out ‘your’ window…only much better, of course!!!! 🙂 Thanks for sharing it with all of us.

  3. Lovely Mahesh 🙂
    You have actually taken pics since inception & religiously over all these years. I doubt if anyone else in the world has similar pics from the same perspective! Cool 🙂
    Thanks for sharing!

    • Thanks Anita for your kind words 🙂 I must have about 1500 pictures of this view – might have clicked a picture every other day for six years 🙂

  4. Excellent pictorial timeline. This is a great way to remember and fabulous way to show the strong spirit of our country. Also, nice view from your apartment! 🙂

    • Thanks a lot 🙂 A fact: The Freedom Tower will garner around $120 million a year, and it will take 35 years to recoup the costs of construction.

  5. You can really see the difference of the sky line from your past photos through the years.. And what a view from your living room.. 😀
    I think many of us remember exactly where we were when we heard the news of 9/11.
    I was at work it was around 2pm in Britain.. and I came home just after 5pm and never took my coat off for half an hour I was memorised as I could not believe what I had witnessed as the collapse of of the towers came down.. A tragic day for many. ❤

    • Yes, Sue, and it changed the course of history. Thanks for sharing where you were and how you reacted to it. Living in this apartment, I still don’t believe we are here. It looks surreal, to be honest. Thanks a lot for your time. I truly value your words 🙂

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