Press Release: Panel Discussion Explores Gaudí Plans for Skyscraper on World Trade Center Site

In 1908, the visionary Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí sketched preliminary plans for a skyscraper hotel to be built on what eventually became the World Trade Center site. A panel discussion of this fascinating, never-realized proposal will be held in conjunction with the Art Gallery of the Graduate Center's current exhibition Antoni Gaudí: A Multi-Facted View. The program will feature Joan Bassegoda i Nonell, Curator of the Real Catedra Gaudí at the Polytecnic University of Catalonia, and Marc Mascort i Boix, author of a recent study on this little-known project. The program and exhibition both are presented in collaboration with the Instituto Cervantes and The Catalan Consortium for the External Promotion of Culture.

Among other features, the plans called for parabolic towers, reminiscent of Gaudí's famed Sagrada Familia in Barcelona, around a central structure soaring more than 1,000 feet high, with a 375 foot interior exhibition space and a series of dining spaces large enough to accommodate the accompanying strains of a symphony orchestra. It would have been the tallest building the world at the time, and just a few hundred feet shorter than the World Trade Center. (Some, in fact, are proposing that the structure be built on the site now.)

Submitted on: JAN 23, 2003

Category: James Gallery, Press Room