It’s official, Bjark Ingels Group (BIG) have replaced Foster + Partners as the architect for the World Trade Centre 2 (WTC2) and have now revealed the first renders of their design for the Ground Zero site.

WTC2 was first designed by Foster + Partners back in 2006 but was stalled due to financial reasons. In 2015 the project received a new breath of life when would-be occupier of the building, Rupert Murdoch and his companies 21st Century Fox and News Corp, came to the table with the needed financial security. But Murdoch and his son James, an executive at the corporation, had one major condition to their signature on a tentative lease: the building was to be redesigned to be more aligned with the needs of their global media company.

In stepped Bjark Ingels and his firm BIG who have now revealed their take on the brief; a tiered tower comprising seven stacked boxes that will act as vertical neighbourhoods and be tailored to the individual needs of the building’s tenants.  (See Ingel’s video explanation of the design below)

The tower will rise to nearly the same height of One World Trade Centre (minus the spire) and feature a dualistic façade that on one side nods to the straitlaced buildings of downtown Manhattan and on the other the neighbourhood of nearby Tribeca.

At 408 metres, the building will be the third tallest in New York, behind One World Trade Centre and 432 Park Avenue by Rafael Viñoly, and will feature various landscape terraces on top of each stacked volume.

The seven columns are stepped in parallel to the incline of One World Trade Centre which Ingels says is a reference to the Twin Towers that previously stood on the site.

Elevator shafts will be concentrated on the western end of the structure, while winding staircases will be set against the glassy exterior wall to encourage companies to connect between floors.

The building’s topmost floor will house a one of the world’s largest garden terraces and a Fox screening room.

Murdoch and at least two of his media companies will occupy the two largest of the seven stacked volumes and expect to move into the building by the 20th anniversary of 11 September.

Images: DBOX courtesy of BIG.