Tuesday, January 31, 2017

My Visit to One World Observatory to Support the American Red Cross Mission

by Stan Frank, American Red Cross
The One World Observatory is at the top of the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere
Desiree Ramos Reiner and me at the entrance to OWO.
On a windy Monday morning, I met Desiree Ramos Reiner, the Greater New York Region Chief External Affairs Officer, at the corner of Vesey and West Streets for an adventure more than 100 stories above ground.

Last year, more than 50 million tourists visited New York City. The most popular tourist attraction in New York was the One World Observatory at One World Trade Center in Lower Manhattan. The Observatory is at the top of the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere and is located on the 100th, 101st and 102nd floors of One World Trade Center.

Although I live in lower Manhattan, I had not yet visited the One World Observatory since it opened in May 2015. I thought it was time and I had an extra special reason for visiting now: To show its support of the Red Cross’s mission to prevent and alleviate human suffering worldwide, One World Observatory will donate a portion of special Red Cross admission tickets sold through February 10th to the organization. 

The destruction of the World Trade Center in 2001 was very traumatic for me as it was for millions of people in New York and around the world. On the one hand, I felt a deep sadness returning to the site, but, on the other hand, I felt a great pride that One World Trade had been rebuilt and demonstrated to the world that the United States is resilient and hopeful for the future.

After passing through the Global Welcome Center, we stopped to watch a short video titled “Voices”, which tells personal stories of some of the men and women who built One World Trade Center. It was very moving to hear their stories and to see the pride in their faces of what they accomplished in building this amazing tower.

It took hundreds of construction workers 14 years to rebuild the World Trade Center and the Observatory
The pathway to the elevators is built surrounded by solid bedrock, so it’s a little like walking through a cave. We then boarded one of five windowless elevators called Sky Pods, each of which can hold about 8 to 10 people. We rode the pod with another family, so there were five people in our pod. As soon as the doors closed, and before we even had time to feel nervous, our Sky Pod rose very swiftly and silently to the 102nd floor in less than 60 seconds. On the way up, a small wall monitor told us what floor we were passing and a remarkable floor-to-ceiling video projected on the Sky Pod walls showed a time lapse vision of New York City’s skyline from the 1600’s to the present day.

On the 102nd floor, we were first treated to a two-minute video presentation of a bird’s eye view of New York at the See Forever Theater before being directed to the Main Observation space on the 100th floor. The observation space which circles the entire 100th floor is wide and airy with high floor-to-ceiling windows that let you see the City from every angle. The views there are absolutely spectacular! We spent our time walking around pointing out landmarks we recognized on each side, including ferries, bridges, tunnels, sky scrapers, and the ports in Brooklyn and Bayonne.

On the west view, you can see the Hudson River beyond the George Washington Bridge and the New Jersey Palisades. On a clear day, you can see more than 25 miles!

East View with the Brooklyn Bridge.

The north view captures the Empire State Building and Midtown Manhattan

The south view shows the Statue of Liberty and the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge which connects Brooklyn to Staten Island
A unique feature in the Observatory space is a 14 foot wide “disc” called the Sky Portal that is set into the floor where you can look down for an incredible perspective of real-time, high definition footage of Manhattan’s streets. You can actually see people and cars moving 100 floors below your feet!

Our feet standing on the 14 foot Sky Portal set into the Observation floor offers an incredible live view of the streets below
The Observatory is open from 9 a.m. to midnight seven days a week. Tickets are timed-admission and are valid for a specific time and date but, once inside, you can stay as long as you want. The Observatory also has its own gift shop and three different eateries from a casual café to a seated fine-dining restaurant for those who want to extend their stay. Many people time their visits for the incredible sunsets visible from the tower.

A visit to One World Observatory is an attraction that should not be missed. And if you purchase tickets by February 10th via this special link or by visiting https://oneworldobservatory.com/tickets/ and using code Redcross17, a portion of your ticket will go toward supporting the Red Cross. This is valid for tickets purchased for visits through March 31.

If you do have the chance to visit, let us know by tagging the American Red Cross In Greater New York on Facebook, Twitter (@redcrossny) and Instagram (@redcrossny). And don’t forget to tag and thank our friends at One World Observatory (@oneworldny).

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.