In the late 1960s and early 1970s, it was a source of political contention and financial worry. In the late 1970s, it was a symbol of metropolitan glamor (it was the Emerald City in The Wiz, after all!). In the 1980s and 1990s, it stood for commercial success and tourist fascination. In the early 21st century, it became Ground Zero. And now, for most people, the World Trade Center is back to being the World Trade Center once again, proof that determination can – just as in the 60s and 70s – overcome political strife. Things may never be right in Lower Manhattan again, but things can be good.
I’m a huge, huge, huge 1964-65 New York World’s Fair fan. And on May 23, I finally got to visit the Mecca of NYWF fandom – CORONA PARK at Flushing Meadows in Queens! My good-natured friend Dasha accompanied me. In fact, she assisted me greatly by taking a few photos (See a galleryful of my Corona Park images here).
Here are a few pics of the Unisphere, the fair’s official symbol and the embodiment of the fair’s aim: Peace through [global] understanding.
“It will remain as a permanent reminder of man’s aspirations for peace through understanding, and a symbol of his achievements in an expanding universe. Unisphere is truly the miracle in the meadow.”
This 900,000 pound stainless steel structure was designed by Gilmore Clark and engineered/constructed by United States Steel’s American Bridge Division.
You can learn more about the Unisphere, the NYS Pavilion, and the rest of the fair at NYWF64.com, an excellent resource for NYWF enthusiasts.
Here’s a trailer for a crazy documentary about tightrope phenomenon Philippe Petit and his successful 1974 attempt to cross the span between WTC 1 & 2 on a wire. The film is streaming on Netflix!