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By Ricki Shenfeld ’18 and Verity Sylvester ‘19
On Friday October 27th 2017, members of the Real Estate Association (REA) had the privilege of visiting Silverstein Properties’ offices and touring their iconic World Trade Center development in Lower Manhattan. The day started at 7 World Trade Center with Mike Marcucci, Producer of 16 Acres, an award-winning documentary about the rebuilding of Ground Zero. Having spent years working alongside Silverstein Properties in the development of the site, Mike was able to provide the group with a unique perspective on the site’s politically and architecturally complex history. Mike spoke in depth about the complicated process of site planning and architect selection, sharing with us Silverstein Properties’ vision for revitalizing Lower Manhattan while preserving the historic context of the site. Mike walked students through a large-scale model of the 16-acre site, home to five office towers, a transportation hub and a 9/11 memorial and museum.
The students continued with a tour through the Oculus, the World Trade Center’s transportation hub. The unique architectural design of the structure and state of the art retail space has made it a top tourist destination in NYC, bringing millions of visitors a year to the site. It also accommodates around 250,000 commuters a day as it connects 11 subway lines, the PATH rail system and the Battery Park Ferry Terminal.
Following the tour of the Oculus, the group ended the day on the 69th floor of 4 World Trade Center. The REA was lucky enough to be one of the last groups to tour this floor, as Spotify took possession of the space in late October as part of their 378,000 square foot lease in the tower. Silverstein Properties invited fifty street artists to cover the walls, floors and windows of the 69th floor of 4 WTC with eye-popping graffiti and art installations, truly making this tour a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
On behalf of Columbia Business School’s Real Estate Association, we would like to thank Silverstein Properties for allowing us to explore their iconic World Trade Center project. The site tour allowed us to better understand the company’s vision for the revitalization of Lower Manhattan and rebuilding of the historic ground zero site.
Ricki Shenfeld Tishman ’18 is the VP of Site Tours for the Real Estate Association at Columbia Business School. She is a second year student focusing on real estate. Prior to enrolling at Columbia, Ricki worked in Acquisitions & Capital Markets at DDG, a luxury real estate developer in Manhattan with offices in San Francisco and Palm Beach. Ricki spent her summer at Silverstein Properties in Acquisitions & Development.
Verity Sylvester ‘19 is the AVP of Site Tours for the Real Estate Association at Columbia Business School. She is a first year focusing on real estate development and finance. Verity previously worked for Manulife Real Estate based in Toronto in asset management and development functions.