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"A Visible Negative Space"


Oliver Söhngen, Freelance Designer

Good evening my name is Oliver Söhngen. I am an immigrant from Germany. I have been living in the United States for twelve years.

I have been tinkering with a design for a memorial in the few weeks since the catastrophe happened. I also want to offer my condolences on the behalf of other countries, like Germany. We are very moved by all that has happened.

I have thought that the Twin Towers were very important for the world and for New Yorkers. I really thought that there was a need to rebuild in the beginning, and I thought that a memorial should be not an afterthought of the development at the World Trade Center site, but it should be organically integrated into the development that's happening.

My idea, as a freelance designer, that the corporate office towers should be free of development and should be sacred space. Second of all, I thought it would be a good idea not to rebuild the towers themselves, but maybe recreate them as a visible negative space with surrounding buildings.

There would be three buildings surrounding the side that would frame the space such that from a very right angle, the towers would be absolutely visible. At night, that space could be lit, and all you would see are those towers.

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