Steel Erection at 11 Times Square

Get your mind out of the gutter, folks. The beginning of steel erection at 11 Times Square — the glass tower rising opposite The New York Times building — means that the first speculative midtown development in years is finally rising.

The 7,000 tons of steel will be used to reinforce the concrete core of the building and frame its 40 floors, at 42nd Street and Eighth Avenue.

Experts say reinforced concrete cores make for safer skyscrapers. The technique was used in Seven World Trade Center and will be used in One World Trade Center (formerly known as the Freedom Tower).

“We remain ahead of schedule and will deliver the building for tenant occupancy by late 2009,” said David Welch, chief financial officer for SJP Properties, the developer of the project.

The tower will be LEED certified and include 53,000 square feet of retail and 14,000 square feet of commercial signage opportunities, including at the tower’s pinnacle.