America's Tallest Building Is ... in NYC

1 World Trade Center now officially the US' tallest building

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Nov 12, 2013 10:54 AM CST

(Newser) – Breathe easy, New Yorkers: Your new World Trade Center was officially declared the tallest building in the US today, when the Height Committee of the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat concluded that the 408-foot needle atop it counted as a spire rather than an antenna, and hence could be counted toward the building's height.

That brings the skyscraper's height up to its intended 1,776 feet, which is symbolically resonant as the year the US declared independence, and, more importantly, enough to supplant the artist formerly known as the Sears Tower (now known as the Willis Tower) as America's tallest building. Without the spire, 1 World Trade Center would have been only 1,368 feet tall, well below Chicago's 1,451-foot skyscraper. The committee that made the ruling is, ironically, based in Chicago.

This combination made from file photos shows Willis Tower, formerly known as the Sears Tower, in Chicago on March 12, 2008, left, and 1 World Trade Center in New York on Sept. 5, 2013.
This combination made from file photos shows Willis Tower, formerly known as the Sears Tower, in Chicago on March 12, 2008, left, and 1 World Trade Center in New York on Sept. 5, 2013.   ((AP Photos/File))
In this May 10, 2013 file photo, the silver spire topping 1 World Trade Center is fully installed on the building's roof, bringing the structure to its full, symbolic height of 1,776 feet in New York.
In this May 10, 2013 file photo, the silver spire topping 1 World Trade Center is fully installed on the building's roof, bringing the structure to its full, symbolic height of 1,776 feet in New York.   (Mark Lennihan)
  (Mark Lennihan)
In this Nov. 8, 2013 file photo, the beacon and spire of 1 World Trade Center are lit up, as seen from The Heights neighborhood of Jersey City, NJ.
In this Nov. 8, 2013 file photo, the beacon and spire of 1 World Trade Center are lit up, as seen from The Heights neighborhood of Jersey City, NJ.   (Julio Cortez)
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