Mahwah Company Assists in Building Tallest Building in US

New Jersey had its hand in claiming yet another title for our neighbor, New York City. This time, in a little friendly competition over whose building is the tallest.

Hytorc, an industrial bolting company in Mahwah, N.J., bolted down the 408-foot spire and its 14 communication rings to One World Trade Center, according to The spire gave the tower the edge it needed over Chicago's Willis Tower to become the tallest building in the United States.

"…we are proud to say that an international company, headquartered in Mahwah, New Jersey played an important role in making it the tallest skyscraper in the Western Hemisphere," said Director of Marketing for Hytorc, Jason Junkers, in a statement.

One World Trade Center was officially announced the tallest building in the United States when completed, topping Chicago's Willis Tower, which had held the title for 40 years prior, according to USA Today.

The 40-year reign was essentially ended by Mahwah's contribution, the spire. CNN reported that the Council of Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat, a Chicago-based council, deemed that the 408-foot long spire atop One World Trade Center was eligible to be counted towards the total height of the tower, capping the height at 1,776 feet.

"Even though the cladding was taken off the spire, you can still see that it is an architectural element," Executive Director of the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat Antony Wood said. "It is not just a plain steel mast from which to hang antenna or satellite dishes."

According to the Council's website, height of buildings is measured in three categories: height to architectural top, highest occupied floor and height to tip. It was the first category that sparked the most discussion.

The Council defines the category as height measured, "from the level of the lowest, significant, open-air, pedestrian entrance to the architectural top of the building, including spires, but not including antennae, signage, flag poles or other functional-technical equipment."

The key was the spire, which was cause for much debate because without it, The Willis Tower is six stories higher and boasts a roof line that is 100 feet taller, the New York Times reported.

With bragging rights on the line, Mayor Rahm Emanuel argued that the spire was merely an antenna, which would not be attributed towards the total height of the building.

"I just saw the decision, and I would just say to all the experts gathered in one room, if it looks like an antenna, acts like an antenna, then guess what? It is an antenna," he said.

Nonetheless, the Council stood firm in their argument that the mast was not an antenna, but rather a part of the permanent structure and architectural design.

"We were very satisfied with the detailed information presented by the team, in particular, that which affirmed that the structure on top of the building is meant as a permanent architectural feature, not a piece of functional-technical equipment," said Johnson.

The wrestle for bragging rights was quickly undermined by a statement from Willis Tower officials.

"Willis Tower welcomes One World Trade Center to the elite club of the world's tallest buildings. Willis Tower has never seen this as competition between two iconic buildings," the statement read. "One World Trade Center is a stunning architectural feat and it is a symbol of the resilience of the American people."