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The World Trade Center's new logo is a confusing mix of allusions

Symbol references 9/11 and soon-to-open luxury shopping mall
  • @christophhooton

Given the unenviable task of trying to fuse corporate strength, architectural shapes, the mourning of tragedies past and the promise of consumerism, an advertising firm has come up with a new logo for the World Trade Center, and it’s a bit baffling.

The 'W' sign comes as part of a $3.5 million rebranding for the centre by Landor Associates, and, as Co.Design notes, plays on negative space in a similar way to the Rubin vase.

The five bars in the logo represent the five towers that will form the 16-acre World Trade Center, with the downward-facing bottom two referencing the pools of the September 11 Memorial and the empty spaces in between the top three bars alluding to the fallen Twin Towers and the Tribute in Light that marks them each year.

It's an almost poetic, if a little dizzying logo, though it is soured somewhat by the fact it can also be seen as an advert for a luxury shopping mall.

The top of the logo slants at a 17.76-degree angle, a nod to 1 World Trade Center’s 1,776-foot height (Picture: Getty)

In addition to standing for 'World Trade Center', the W is also a nod to the 'Westfield World Trade Center' which is due to open next year.


Like it or loathe it, the logo is a fair representation of the disparate and competing interests that have been involved in the development of the site since the 2001 attacks.