Would you want to work in Freedom Tower?

So it’s 5-10 years down the road, and your company tells you they’re moving the office. The new location? “Freedom Tower,” erected on the site of the former World Trade Center in NYC. Do you go?

If you are the owner of a company, or are high enough up in a major corporation that you decide where to put your offices, do you rent space in the new WTC?

It’s hard to imagine what the world’s going to be like when the Freedom Tower is complete and open for occupation. Certainly it’s being built with security and survivability in mind, and I’d hope that the threat of terrorism would be reduced by then. But even assuming that Bin Laden is captured or killed and various terrorist organizations are badly scattered or eliminated, will Freedom Tower always have a bullseye on it because of what it represents? Will future Bin Ladens and McVeighs see it as something to topple as a way to outdo their predecessors? Will it affect whether or not people want to do business there?

Personally, I think I would work in the new tower if that’s where my job took me. I’d be in the back of my mind, but I don’t know if it would keep me from taking a job there. But if I were a corporation looking for a place to put an office, I’d probably look for something less high-profile. Some people might view it as a sign of patriotism to open for business there, a sign of not being afraid, or just for the prestige… But I’d have a hard time putting my people in there just to make the company look good, not to mention what might happen to the business in the event of another attack. There are plenty of nondescript office buildings elsewhere that would work just fine.

Anyway, say the decision’s been left up to you. With current politics aside please, would you want to work in Freedom Tower?

Yes, I would.

I would, despite the stupid name.

[Moderator Hat ON]

More of an IMHO thing, I think.

[Moderator Hat OFF]

yes, without hesitation.

Absolutely. That thing is going to be a fortress.

I’m there. I am, however, keeping a parachute in my office.


First of all, I hate working in high rise buildings. Too many things can go wrong - a small grease fire in the lobby restaurant while you are on the 50th floor; a disgruntled employee shooting on the 35th floor causing panic; elevator outages; in California there is the earthquake factor…all in all, I cannot think of a single good thing about working in a high rise building, other than it beats unemployment.

Regarding the 9/11 factor? Let’s be honest - of course it is going to be a target for every wacko and terrorist in the world. Add to that the jokesters who make some dumb comment on the elevator, causing panic and evacuation. Plus phoned bomb threats that will be taken more seriously there.

If you want to be brave and thumb your nose at fear - more power to you. But all things being equal, walking through the hyper-security every day and living with that legacy is not going to make it a happy working environment.


No. I’m afraid of heights and I hate being crowded so I doubt very seriously I’ll ever work in a skyscraper or live in a large metropolitan area.

No. I hate heights, and I don’t think I’d be able to work very well knowing my office had a big old bulls-eye on it. Whether it’ll be possible or not is another thing, but obviously they’ll want to try.

It’s nice to think that five or ten years from now, the threat of terrorism will be greatly reduced, but right now I’m not inclined to think that’s the case. I do want to live and work in New York eventually, but this one’s a little too rich for me.