Eight images were published recently on the website of the renowned Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava, who is designing the new Church of St. Nicholas. The images showed a building that will draw inspiration from Byzantium and great churches of the east. The new St. Nicholas Church will replace the original one. The original St. Nicholas Church was totally destroyed on September 11, 2001 when the south tower of the World Trade Center collapsed.
Meanwhile, Plans to replace it on the grounds of the new trade center, across Liberty Street from the memorial have been made, but had to face many difficulties and obstacles that at a time seemed to be insurmountable.
According to “New York Times” newspaper, in the pictures that the Spanish architect published on his official website, we can see that the building would draw inspiration from two great churches of the East. Hagia Sophia and Church of the Holy Savior in Chora. Both monumental churches are in Instanbul.
“While that ecumenical provenance may accurately reflect the stated desire of the Greek Orthodox Church- to create a space in which all visitors will feel welcome- it will almost certainly ignite a new round of debate over the role of religion at, or around the World Trade Center. In 2010, national attention focused on a bitter fight over an Islamic community center and mosque that was proposed nearby” is mentioned to the newspaper.
The new church will look nothing like the modest old parish church. It will cost 20 million dollars and is expected to open its doors by 2016.
“If I may quote Jesus, “My house shall be called a house of prayer for all people,” said Father Mark Arey, a spokesman for the archdiocese. “It will be open to everyone: the believer, the unbeliever, the Orthodox Christian, the atheist. Whoever you are, this is a space that you can come into and find some meditative solace.”