Austin J. Tobin

Austin Joseph Tobin (May 25, 1903 – February 8, 1978) was an American businessman who served as the executive director of the Port of New York Authority, the precursor to the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, from 1942 until 1972.[1]

Tobin is widely known for authorizing the construction of the original World Trade Center, which was destroyed during the September 11 attacks in 2001.

Austin J. Tobin
Director of the Port of New York Authority
In office
1942–1972
Preceded byJohn E. Ramsey
Succeeded byMatthias Lukens
Personal details
BornMay 25, 1903
Brooklyn, New York City, U.S.
DiedFebruary 8, 1978 (aged 74)
Manhattan, New York City, U.S.
EducationCollege of the Holy Cross
Fordham Law School

Background

Tobin was born on May 25, 1903, to an Irish-American family in Brooklyn, New York City. He was educated at the College of the Holy Cross and Fordham Law School.

Tobin joined the Port Authority in 1927, where he served the first 15 years of his career in the law department. He started out as a law clerk, and was promoted to assistant general counsel in 1935.[2] In 1942, he was appointed as executive director of the Port Authority.[2] During his thirty years as executive director, the agency gained control of LaGuardia Airport, Idlewild (later renamed John F. Kennedy International Airport), and Newark Airport. He oversaw the development of the original World Trade Center, the creation of the Lincoln Tunnel, and the Port Authority Bus Terminal.[3]

In 1966, Tobin received The Hundred Year Association of New York's Gold Medal Award "in recognition of outstanding contributions to the City of New York."

He died on February 8, 1978, in Manhattan, New York City, at the age of 74.[1]

Legacy

Austin Tobin Plaza Marriott World Trade Center - 1995
Austin J. Tobin Plaza in 1995

In 1978, the Port Authority decided to rename the outdoor plaza at the World Trade Center, in his honor, as the Austin J. Tobin Plaza. The centerpiece of the plaza was The Sphere, a 25-foot tall bronze sculpture designed by Fritz Koenig.

The plaza was destroyed during the September 11 attacks in 2001, and is now occupied on the same site by the National September 11 Memorial.

See also

References

  1. ^ a b "Austin J. Tobin, Executive Director Of Port Authority for 30 Years, Dies. A Target of Criticism. Worked Long Hours. Took Top Position in 1942". The New York Times. February 9, 1978. Retrieved 2008-06-17. Austin J. Tobin, the autocratic Brooklyn-born lawyer who built the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey into the most powerful agency of its kind in the world, died of cancer yesterday at his Manhattan apartment. He was 74 years old.
  2. ^ a b Glanz, James and Eric Lipton (2003). City in the Sky. Times Books. p. 42.
  3. ^ Doig, Jameson (2001). Empire on the Hudson. Columbia University Press.

Further reading

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Greenwich Village Orchestra

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Liberty Park

Liberty Park is a one-acre (4,000 m2) elevated public park at the World Trade Center in New York City, overlooking the National September 11 Memorial & Museum. It is located above the Vehicular Security Center and opened on June 29, 2016. The St. Nicholas National Shrine is located within the park, as well as The Sphere, the iconic sculpture salvaged from the World Trade Center site. Another statue, America's Response Monument, is also located in the park.

Plaza

A plaza , pedestrian plaza, or place is an open urban public space, such as a city square.Throughout Spanish America and the Spanish East Indies, the plaza mayor of each center of administration held three closely related institutions: the cathedral, the cantabile or administrative center, which might be incorporated in a wing of a governor's palace, and the audience or law court. The plaza might be large enough to serve as a military parade ground. At times of crisis or fiesta, it was the space where a large crowd might gather. Like the Italian piazza, the plaza remains a center of community life that is only equaled by the market-place.

Most colonial cities in Spanish America and the Philippines were planned around a square plaza de armas, where troops could be mustered, as the name implies, surrounded by the governor's palace and the main church. A plaza de toros is a bullring.

In the US, they can be used to open spaces for low income neighborhoods, and can also the overall aesthetic of the surrounding area boosting economic vitality, pedestrian mobility and safety for pedestrians. Most plazas are created out of a collaboration between local non-profit applicants and city officials which requires approval from the city.In modern usage, a plaza can be any gathering place on a street or between buildings, a street intersection with a statue, etc. Today's metropolitan landscapes often incorporate the "plaza" as a design element, or as an outcome of zoning regulations, building budgetary constraints, and the like. Sociologist William H. Whyte conducted an extensive study of plazas in New York City: his study humanized the way modern urban plazas are conceptualized, and helped usher in significant design changes in the making of plazas.

Port Authority of New York and New Jersey

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) is a joint venture between the U.S. states of New York and New Jersey, established in 1921 through an interstate compact authorized by the United States Congress. The Port Authority oversees much of the regional transportation infrastructure, including bridges, tunnels, airports, and seaports, within the geographical jurisdiction of the Port of New York and New Jersey. This 1,500-square-mile (3,900 km2) port district is generally encompassed within a 25-mile (40 km) radius of the Statue of Liberty National Monument. The Port Authority is headquartered at 4 World Trade Center and is a member of the Real Estate Board of New York.The Port Authority operates the Port Newark–Elizabeth Marine Terminal, which handled the third-largest volume of shipping among all ports in the United States in 2004, and the largest on the Eastern Seaboard. The Port Authority also operates six bi-state crossings: three connecting New Jersey with Manhattan, and three connecting New Jersey with Staten Island. The Port Authority Bus Terminal and the PATH rail system are also run by the Port Authority, as well as LaGuardia Airport, John F. Kennedy International Airport, Newark Liberty International Airport, Teterboro Airport and Stewart International Airport. The agency has its own 1,700-member Port Authority Police Department.

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Six World Trade Center

Six World Trade Center was an eight-story building in Lower Manhattan in New York City. It opened in 1973 and was the building in the World Trade Center complex that had the fewest stories. The building served as the U.S. Customs House for New York. It was destroyed in 2001 due to the collapse of the North Tower during the September 11 attacks; it is not set to be replaced as part of the new World Trade Center.

Sky Gate, New York

Sky Gate, New York was a sculpture by artist Louise Nevelson located in the mezzanine of the North Tower of the World Trade Center in New York from 1978 until its 2001 destruction in the collapse of the buildings during the September 11th attacks.Nevelson was inspired by a New York skyline view she'd seen aboard a flight from New York to Washington, saying the work was a translation of the skyline, calling her sculpture a "night piece" representing the "windows of New York."

Survivors' Staircase

The Survivors' Staircase was the last visible remaining original structure above ground level at the World Trade Center site. It was originally two outdoor flights of granite-clad stairs and an escalator that connected Vesey Street to the World Trade Center's Austin J. Tobin Plaza. During the September 11 attacks, the stairs served as an escape route for hundreds of evacuees from 5 World Trade Center, a 9-floor building adjacent to the 110-story towers. The staircase is now an important feature of the National September 11 Memorial & Museum.

The City of New York vs. Homer Simpson

"The City of New York vs. Homer Simpson" is the first episode of The Simpsons' ninth season. It was originally broadcast on the Fox network in the United States on September 21, 1997, as the 179th episode of the series. The episode features the Simpson family traveling to Manhattan to recover the family car, which was taken by Barney Gumble and abandoned outside the World Trade Center, where it has been repeatedly posted with parking tickets, and disabled with a parking boot.

Writer Ian Maxtone-Graham was interested in making an episode where the Simpson family travels to New York to retrieve their misplaced car. Executive producers Bill Oakley and Josh Weinstein suggested that the car be found in Austin J. Tobin Plaza at the World Trade Center, as they wanted a location that would be widely known. Great lengths were taken to make a detailed replica of the borough of Manhattan. The episode received generally positive reviews, and has since been on accolade lists of The Simpsons episodes. The "You're Checkin' In" musical sequence won two awards. Because of the World Trade Center's main role, the episode was taken off syndication in many areas following the September 11 attacks, but had come back into syndication by 2006.

The Sphere

The Sphere (officially Sphere at Plaza Fountain) is a 25-foot (7.6 m) high, cast bronze sculpture by German artist Fritz Koenig. It is located in Liberty Park at the World Trade Center in Lower Manhattan, New York City. Originally located at the Austin J. Tobin Plaza, the centerpiece survived the collapse of the World Trade Center towers, which resulted from the September 11 attacks in 2001.

The Sphere was recovered from the rubble, visibly damaged but largely intact. After being dismantled and stored near a hangar at John F. Kennedy International Airport, the sculpture was the subject of the 2001 documentary Koenig's Sphere. On March 11, 2002, six months after the attack, the sculpture was moved temporarily to Battery Park, where in unrestored condition it was rededicated (September 11, 2002) with an eternal flame.

Having become a major tourist attraction, the unrestored sculpture was rededicated on August 16, 2017 by the Port Authority at a permanent location in Liberty Park, overlooking the September 11 Memorial and its original location.

Thomas E. Millsop

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World Trade Center Plaza Sculpture

The World Trade Center Plaza Sculpture, also called Cloud Fortress, was a sculpture created by Japanese artist Masayuki Nagare in 1972, located at the World Trade Center complex at the Church Street entrance to site's the primary internal 6-acre plaza.Having survived the September 11 attacks, the sculpture was demolished during subsequent emergency efforts to access and clear the site.

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