The original World Trade Center had a fabulous mall underneath that spanned the entire plaza. There were wonderful stores, shops, restaurants and at the entrance, at the bottom of Fulton Street, where visitors would access an escalator that would take them below ground to the wonderful concourse, there was a fabulous “Borders” bookstore where invariably there would be some famous person signing copies of their books. It was a majestic place to be, to shop, to work and to enjoy all that lower Manhattan has to offer.
Nothing says “we are back,” after the dreadful turn-of-events that killed so many and decimated World Trade Center Plaza, then the reopening of the venerated concourse. On August 16, the underground mall reopened once again, and it appears to be bigger and better than the original. This Westfield Mall is “a beacon of hope”, as so eloquently pointed out by the Chief Operating Officer of Westfield, Bill Hecht, in recent comments he made at the reopening of the concourse.
Westfield, one of the most successful mall operators in this country, manages the mall, and the Ports of Authority of both New York and New Jersey own the property on which the mall sits. Over 100 stores are spread over 360,000 square-feet in this must-see mall that is both architecturally pleasing and capitalistically encouraging. Lower Manhattan needs all the attention it can get after those awful events that stole lives, business, commerce and completely negated the industrious energy that was awash across World Trade Center Plaza since its inception.
New retail entrants to this underground shopping mall are Apple, the massive specialty food store/restaurant, Eataly, as well as Ford Motor Company, which is opening up a new digital showroom called FordHub where buyers can become acquainted with their extensive line of products strictly through technology.
“All you have to look at is the Apple Store and Eataly,” said Peter Lowy, one of the two CEOs of Westfield, who attended the opening. “When you look at that, you should have much higher volumes because you have much different retailers that do very, very …