(KMOV.com) - Like so many Americans, Angelo Arzano remembers exactly where he was when the first plane crashed into the first tower of the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001. The New York native was at work in lower Manhattan, just blocks from the two towers.
While he remembers so much about that day--the attacks, the smoke, the confusion, even the person he was finally able to meet up with and watch the news coverage with--Arzano also knows what it took to build the new One World Trade Center and to make it as safe, strong and resilient as possible.
"Every catastrophe, we learn something and we make an improvement with the next building we go and do," said Arzano, now an architect with HOK in downtown St. Louis. "I think that's the biggest effect [of] that event."
Arzano was on the architecture team that helped build the new building. He began working on it in the middle of 2003--less than two years after the two towers crumbled to the ground.
Based on what designers, architects and builders learned since 9/11, Arzano said they came up with structural enhancements that helped build "the building as strong as we can."
Arzano also said what happened in New York had a ripple effect across the country when it comes to building codes.
"Any developer in [St. Louis] who is going to start building a building over 420 feet tall is automatically required to add an additional stair over and above what the minimum requirements are," Arzano said.