New York is considered the epitome of a metropolis. Since its establishment 400 years ago as the entry point to the American continent, the pulsating large city has developed into the financial and creative center of the world today. At the beginning of the 19th century, the city was growing faster than ever before and thus in 1811, the town planners decided to cover the entire island of Manhattan, only the southern portion of which was developed, with a grid-pattern street network, which, at the same time, forms the basis for the city's structure today. The only exception was then and still is: Broadway. The first skyscrapers were built at the beginning of the 20th century. They became the symbol of the city, like the Wool-worth Building and, above all later, the Empire State Building. The mean-spirited even say that this vibrant city has been living off of its cultural and architectonic legacy since the 1950s, such as, for example the Seagram Building, which was built based upon blueprints by the architect Mies van der Rohe or also the UN Headquarters, and that since then hardly any innovative, futuristic and daring projects have been realized.
In late summer 2001, New York experienced its darkest day, when the World Trade Center (WTC) was destroyed by terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. In place of the WTC, now the Freedom Tower-based upon designs by the American-Polish architect Daniel Libeskind-is to be built. Clean-up work at Ground Zero was completed in May 2002 and the city began to look to the future once again with a multitude of extremely innovative projects such as the expansion of the MoMA. This can also be seen upon closer inspection of New York's design scene, which is characterized by the overlap of various creative fields such as interior design, product design, fashion design, architecture, film and graphic arts. New designers do not only want to be creators, but rather they transform themselves into independent producers. Thanks to computer science, they control the production process from the desk all the way to the finished product and are experimental and independent as a result. Also in terms of fashion, New York is both a mecca and a trendsetter. Famous designers such as Donna Karan and Calvin Klein have set trends around the world and a new squad of young designers presents its collections with substantial international resonance at New York's Fashion Week in Battery Park in Manhattan. The examples gathered here show once again that New York really does not sleep but continues to set the trends of the international architecture and design industries.
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