National September 11 Memorial & Museum

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"9/11 Memorial" redirects here. For other uses, see 9/11 Memorial (disambiguation).
National September 11
Memorial & Museum
The Plaza and Museum Building as it appeared in early 2012
General information
Status Open
Type Memorial and Museum
Location 200 Liberty Street, Manhattan, New York 10006
United States
Coordinates 40°42′42.1″N 74°0′49.0″W / 40.711694°N 74.013611°W / 40.711694; -74.013611Coordinates: 40°42′42.1″N 74°0′49.0″W / 40.711694°N 74.013611°W / 40.711694; -74.013611
Construction started March 2006
Opening Memorial:
September 11, 2011 (Victims' families)
September 12, 2011 (Public)[1]
May 16, 2014 (Dedication and Victims' families)[2]
May 21, 2014 (Public)[3]
Roof Memorial: The footprints of the Twin Towers are underground.
Museum: The pavilion is between 20 to 23 metres (66 to 75 ft).
Design and construction
Architect Michael Arad of Handel Architects
Peter Walker and Partners
Davis Brody Bond Snøhetta
Structural engineer WSP Global
BuroHappold Engineering (Museum)
Preliminary site plans for the World Trade Center rebuild

The National September 11 Memorial & Museum (also known as the 9/11 Memorial and 9/11 Memorial Museum) is the principal memorial and museum commemorating the September 11 attacks of 2001, which killed 2,977 people, and the World Trade Center bombing of 1993, which killed six.[4] The memorial is located at the World Trade Center site, on the former location of the Twin Towers, which were destroyed during the attacks. The World Trade Center Memorial Foundation was renamed the National September 11 Memorial & Museum at the World Trade Center in 2007.[5]

The winner of the World Trade Center Site Memorial Competition was Israeli architect Michael Arad of Handel Architects, a New York- and San Francisco-based firm. Arad worked with landscape architecture firm Peter Walker and Partners on the design which calls for a forest of trees with two square pools in the center, where the Twin Towers once stood.[6] In August 2006, the World Trade Center Memorial Foundation and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey began heavy construction on the memorial and museum.[7] The design is consistent with the original Daniel Libeskind master plan that called for the memorial to be 30 feet below street level (originally 70 feet) in a plaza. The design was the only finalist to throw out Libeskind's requirement that buildings overhang the footprints.

A memorial was planned in the immediate aftermath of the attacks and destruction of the World Trade Center to remember both the victims and those involved in rescue.[8] The National September 11 Memorial & Museum at the World Trade Center is a non-profit corporation with the mission to raise funds for, program, own and operate the memorial and museum at the World Trade Center site. On September 11, 2011, a dedication ceremony was held at the memorial, commemorating the tenth anniversary of the attacks. The memorial officially opened to the public on September 12, 2011, while the museum was dedicated on May 15, 2014 and opened on May 21, 2014. Three months after opening, the memorial had been seen by over 1 million visitors.[9] In 2012, Tuesday's Children, a non-profit family service organization that has made a commitment to individuals directly impacted by 9/11 and to those who have lost loved ones to terrorism around the globe, partnered with the 9/11 Memorial to offer private tours to family members of 9/11 victims and First Responders.[10]


National tour[edit]

In September 2007, the Memorial & Museum launched a four-month national awareness tour that stopped at 25 cities in 25 states where thousands participated in the tour’s activities.[11] The tour began at Finlay Park in Columbia, South Carolina and ended at Steinbrenner Field in Tampa, Florida. Highlights from the tour included: an exhibition of photographs, artifacts from the site and a short film featuring firsthand accounts from individuals who had experienced 9/11 directly. At the opening ceremony in South Carolina, White Knoll Middle School’s students, who raised more than half a million dollars in 2001 to buy a new truck for New York City's Fire Department, were honored. Also at the ceremony, retired New York City Police Officer Marcelo Pevida presented the City of Columbia with an American flag that had flown over Ground Zero.[12] As the main attraction of the 2007 National Tour, steel beams that would later be used in the construction of the memorial were made available to visitors who wanted to sign their names onto it.[13]


On September 9, 2011, Secretary Shaun Donovan of the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development claimed that the department had given $329 million to the September 11 Memorial and Museum through its Community Development Block Grant funding.[14] The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey dropped claims that the 9/11 Memorial and Museum Foundation owed it $300 million in construction costs in return for "financial oversight of the museum and memorial," according to CNN.[15]

Cobblestone campaign[edit]

The National September 11 Memorial & Museum operates a "cobblestone campaign" where a contributor can sponsor a cobblestone or paver that will line the Memorial Plaza. The names of donors appear on the Memorial's website.[16] Once the Memorial is completed, a donor will be able to locate his/her cobblestone or paver by entering his/her name at a kiosk on the Memorial Plaza.[17]

In 2008, the Memorial announced two holiday-associated cobblestone campaign fundraising drives – one for Father's Day and one for the December holiday season.[18][19]

Federal legislation[edit]

The late Daniel Inouye from Hawaii proposed S.1537 (National September 11 Memorial and Museum Act of 2011) which would provide $20 million in Federal funds toward the Memorial's annual operating budget. The legislation was presented to the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy & Natural Resources on October 19, 2011.[20] This is approximately one third of the Memorial's total annual operating budget.

In addition to providing Federal funding, S.1537 would authorize the Secretary of the Interior to accept a donation by the Board of Directors of title to the National September 11 Memorial, contingent on agreement by the Board of Directors, the governors of both New York and New Jersey, the Mayor of New York, and the Secretary of the Interior. On October 19, 2011, William D. Shaddox of the National Park Service testified before the Senate Committee on Energy & Natural Resources and raised concerns regarding the ability of the National Park Service to provide the funds required by S.1537. It was also noted that there is no precedent for the NPS to hold title to a property over which it does not also have operational and administrative control, as S.1537 would require.[21]

Rebuilding of the
World Trade Center
One World Trade Center (construction)
Two World Trade Center
Three World Trade Center
Four World Trade Center
Five World Trade Center
Seven World Trade Center
Liberty Park
National September 11 Memorial & Museum
Performing Arts Center
Transportation Hub
Vehicular Security Center
Westfield World Trade Center




Formerly the World Trade Center Memorial Foundation, Inc., the National September 11 Memorial & Museum was formed as a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation to raise funds and manage the planning and construction of the memorial. Its board of directors had its inaugural meeting on January 4, 2005. The National September 11 Memorial & Museum reached its first phase capital fundraising goal of US$350 million in April 2008. This money, along with additional amounts raised, will be used to build the memorial and museum and to create an endowment for the museum.

Design competition[edit]

In 2003, the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation launched an international competition to design a memorial at the World Trade Center site to commemorate the lives lost in the September 11 terrorist attacks. Individuals and teams from around the world contributed design proposals. On November 19, 2003, the thirteen-member jury – which included Maya Lin, designer of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, and deputy mayor Patricia Harris – selected eight finalists.

"Reflecting Absence", designed by Michael Arad and Peter Walker, was chosen as the winning design on January 6, 2004.[22] Reflecting Absence consists of a field of trees interrupted by two large voids containing recessed pools, marking the footprints of the Twin Towers. The deciduous trees (swamp white oaks[23]) are arranged in rows, forming informal clusters, clearings and groves. The park is at street level, sitting above the Memorial Museum.[24] The names of the victims of the attacks (including those from the Pentagon, American Airlines flight 77, and United Airlines flight 93) and the 1993 bombing are inscribed on the parapets surrounding the waterfalls,[25] in an arrangement based on "meaningful adjacencies".[26] A portion of the slurry wall (approximately half of what Daniel Libeskind originally wanted to preserve[27]), originally designed to hold back the Hudson River, is being maintained in the Museum.

On January 14, 2004, the final design for the World Trade Center site memorial was revealed in a press conference at Federal Hall.

Mission statement[edit]

The non-profit corporation that will manage the memorial states its goals as the following:

The Memorial Mission:

  • Remember and honor the thousands of innocent men, women, and children murdered by terrorists in the horrific attacks of February 26, 1993 and September 11, 2001.
  • Respect this place made sacred through tragic loss.
  • Recognize the endurance of those who survived, the courage of those who risked their lives to save others, and the compassion of all who supported us in our darkest hours.
  • May the lives remembered, the deeds recognized, and the spirit reawakened be eternal beacons, which reaffirm respect for life, strengthen our resolve to preserve freedom, and inspire an end to hatred, ignorance and intolerance.
National September 11 Memorial & Museum at the World Trade Center: About Us, Mission Statements


The Foundation has fundraising responsibilities because of the tasks assigned to it by the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation (LMDC). The Foundation is to own, operate and finance:

  • National September 11 Memorial, the formal "Reflecting Absence" memorial.
  • National September 11 Memorial Museum, a museum to tell the story of the events.

John C. Whitehead was chairman of both LMDC and the World Trade Center Memorial Foundation. He announced his resignation in May 2006. Former LMDC President Kevin Rampe will become chairman of the LMDC. New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg replaced Whitehead as chairman of the National September 11 Memorial & Museum.

Thomas S. Johnson, chairman of the foundation's executive committee announced on May 9, 2006:

The decision was made to not actively pursue new fund-raising efforts until complete clarity can be achieved with respect to the design and costs of the project. Cost concerns emerged publicly last week with the disclosure of an estimate by the construction manager, Bovis Lend Lease, that the memorial and museum would cost $672 million and that it would take a total of at least $973 million to fully develop the memorial setting with a cooling plant, roadways, sidewalks, utilities and stabilized foundation walls. An estimate earlier this year put the cost of the memorial and memorial museum at $494 million.[28]

On May 26, 2006, Gretchen Dykstra resigned as president and chief executive officer of the World Trade Center Foundation.[29] The current president and CEO of the Foundation, Joseph C. Daniels, was appointed in October 2006.[30]

The memorial projects were eventually toned down, and the budget was cut to $530 million.[31] Heavy construction for the memorial began in August 2006, and despite delays, the National September 11 Memorial & Museum was still confident that the memorial would be complete by September 11, 2011.[32]


On March 13, 2006, construction workers arrived at the WTC site to commence work on the Reflecting Absence design. On that same day, relatives of the victims and other concerned citizens gathered to protest the new memorial, stating that the memorial should be built above ground. The president of the memorial foundation, however, stated that family members were consulted and formed a consensus in favor of the current design, and that work will continue as planned.[33][34] In May 2006, it was disclosed that the estimated construction costs for the Memorial had risen to over US$1 billion.[35]

There's just not an unlimited amount of money that we can spend on a memorial. Any figure higher than $500 million to build the memorial to the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks would be "inappropriate", even if the design has to be changed.[36]

The Empire State Building lit up with blue lights on September 12, 2011, in honor of the opening of the Memorial.
Aerial view in June 2012

In 2006, at the request of Bloomberg and Governor George Pataki, builder Frank Sciame performed a month-long analysis, which considered input from victims' families, the Lower Manhattan business and residential communities, members of the memorial jury, architects and others. The analysis recommended design changes that kept the memorial and museum within the US$500,000,000 budget.[37][38]

In July 2008, the Survivors' Staircase was lowered to bedrock, marking the first artifact to be moved into the museum. By the end of August 2008, construction on the footings and foundations had been completed. On September 2, 2008, construction workers erected the 7,700-pound first column for the memorial, near the footprint of the North Tower.[39] By then, approximately 70 percent of the construction trade contracts had been bid or were ready to award. In total, 9,100 tons of steel were installed at the site for the memorial.[40] By April 2010, the reflecting pools were fully framed in steel, and 85% of the concrete had been poured. By April 22, 2010, workers had begun installation of the granite coating for the reflecting pools. By June 2010, the North Pool's granite coating had been fully completed, and workers had begun installation of the granite in the South Pool. In July 2010, the first shipments of soil arrived at the memorial site. In August 2010, workers from Kelco Construction, Inc. of Commack, NY started to plant trees on the memorial plaza. The trees, all swamp white oaks, can reach 60 to 80 feet at maturity, live as long as 300 to 350 years, and are golden-leafed in the fall. The "Survivor Tree" is a callery pear that survived the devastation and was preserved for re-planting.[41] In September 2010, workers reinstalled two tridents from the former twin towers.

In November 2010, workers started testing the North Pool's waterfall. Construction progressed significantly through early 2011. In March 2011, the installation of glass panels on the museum pavilion's façade began, and in May 2011, workers started testing the South Pool's waterfall. Most of the memorial was finished in time for the 10th anniversary of the terrorist attacks, with the museum slated for completion one year later. By September 2, 2011, more than 242 trees had been planted at the site, while 8 more were planted before the memorial opened. By then, both pools had been completed, and were tested daily to ensure that the waterfalls were working.

On September 12, 2011, one day after the 10th anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks, the memorial officially opened to the public, operating under a set of lengthy rules and regulations approved by the Board of Directors. The period extending from September 11, 2011 to May 25, 2014 was known as the "Interim Operating Period," during which time the memorial was surrounded by construction of the neighboring World Trade Center projects.[42]


In January 2004, the design, Reflecting Absence, by architect Michael Arad and landscape architect Peter Walker, was selected as the winner of the LMDC's design competition that had 5,201 entrants from 63 nations. Two pools with the largest manmade waterfalls in the United States cascading down their sides are located within the footprints of the Twin Towers. Each pool is 1-acre (4,000 m2), and together they are intended to symbolize the loss of life and the physical void left by the terrorist attacks. The sound of the water falling is supposed to drown out the sounds of the city, making the site a contemplative sanctuary. Almost 400 sweet gum and swamp white oak trees fill the remaining 6 acres (24,000 m2) of the Memorial Plaza, furthering the reflective nature of the site.[43]

Map displaying the results of simulated pedestrian traffic at the National September 11 Memorial & Museum site, based on modeling by the Louis Berger Group
Renderings of the memorial by Michael Arad.

In addition, cutting-edge pedestrian simulations were conducted to test the design of the memorial site. The pedestrian modeling software Legion was used to simulate how visitors would utilize the space, and the design was subsequently tweaked to prevent potential bottlenecks.[44] The engineer of the fountain was Delta Fountain.[45]

Arrangement of the victims’ names[edit]

The names of 2,983 victims are inscribed on 76 bronze plates attached to the parapet walls that form the edges of the Memorial pools.[46] This includes the names of 2,977 victims who were killed in the September 11 attacks in New York City, Arlington, Virginia, and Pennsylvania, as well as the names of six victims who were killed in the February 1993 World Trade Center bombing. The names are arranged according to a process and algorithm which was used to create "meaningful adjacencies", based on "relationship" details which include proximity at the time of the attacks, company or organization affiliations for those who worked at the World Trade Center or Pentagon, and approximately 1,200 requests from family members. Software developed by Local Projects[47] was used to implement this arrangement.[48]

As a result of this process, the names of the victims who were in the North Tower (WTC 1), passengers or crew of American Airlines Flight 11 (which hit the North Tower) and victims of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing are located around the perimeter of the North Pool. The names of the victims who were in the South Tower (WTC 2), passengers or crew of United Airlines Flight 175 (which hit the South Tower), victims who were in the immediate vicinity of the Twin Towers, first responders who died during rescue operations, passengers or crew of United Airlines Flight 93 (which crashed near Shanksville, Pennsylvania) and American Airlines Flight 77 (which hit the Pentagon), and the victims who were at the Pentagon are located around the perimeter of the South Pool.[49] It was decided that the names of companies would not be included. However, company employees and their visitors are listed together. Passengers of the four flights are listed together under their flight numbers, and first responders are listed together with their units.

The process for arranging names was finalized in an agreement reached in 2006, and replaced an earlier plan to arrange the names randomly. According to Edith Lutnick (Executive Director of the Cantor Fitzgerald Relief Fund), "your loved ones' names are surrounded by the names of those they sat with, those they worked with, those they lived with and, very possibly, those they died with."[50]

The phrase "and her unborn child" follows the names of the ten expectant mothers who died on 9/11, as well as one expectant mother who died in the 1993 attack.[51]

Survivor Tree[edit]

The Survivor Tree during winter.

A callery pear tree that was recovered from the rubble at the World Trade Center site in October 2001.[52][53] At the time of its recovery it was eight feet tall,[54] badly burned, and had only a single living branch.[52] The tree had originally been planted in the 1970s in the area near buildings four and five, close to Church Street.[55]

The president of the national memorial, Joe Daniels, has described the tree as "a key element of the memorial plaza's landscape."[52]

In November 2001, the tree was moved by the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation to the Arthur Ross Nursery in Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx for care, and subsequently replanted in the Bronx on November 11, 2001.[56] The tree had not been expected to survive, but showed signs of new growth in Spring 2002.[53] The location of the tree was unknown by members of the national memorial team during this period, though it was planned to include it as a feature.[56]

In March 2010, while still under the care of the Bronx nursery, the tree was replanted without suffering significant damage after being uprooted in a storm.[55]

Old and new growth on the tree in July 2012.

The tree has become a symbol of hope and rebirth. Richard Cabo said, "It represents all of us."[53][57] In a press release from the Port Authority on August 29, 2011, after Hurricane Irene, President Joe Daniels said, "true to its name, the Survivor Tree is standing tall at the Memorial."[58] In a statement after the March 2010 uprooting of the tree at the nursery, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said, "Again, we and the tree refused to throw in the towel. We replanted the tree, and it bounced back immediately."[52] Keating Crown, a survivor of the attacks, said, "It reminds us all of the capacity of the human spirit to persevere."[53] The official book of the National September 11 Memorial, A Place of Remembrance, describes the tree as "a reminder of the thousands of survivors who persevered after the attacks."[59]

In December 2010, the Survivor Tree, grown to a height of 30 feet,[53] was returned to the World Trade Center site in an event which was attended by Mayor Michael Bloomberg, as well as other city officials,[54] including Department of Parks and Recreation Commissioner Adrian Benepe and Port Authority Executive Director Chris Ward. The event was also attended by several members of the community of survivors and rescue workers.[citation needed]

Although this tree is prominently featured as part of the memorial,[60] there are also six other "survivor trees" which have been permanently planted near New York City Hall and near the Brooklyn Bridge in Manhattan. Of these additional survivor trees, three are also callery pears, and three are little-leaf lindens.[61]


Mohammad Salman Hamdani[edit]

Although victims' family groups agreed that victim names would be placed in groups according to who they worked with or knew, The name of NYPD cadet Mohammad Salman Hamdani was not placed with those of other first responders, nor among those victims whose remains were found in the wreckage of the North Tower, where his remains were discovered. Hamdani's name is instead included on the memorial's last panel for World Trade Center victims, next to a blank space along the South Tower perimeter, with the names of victims that did not fit into the groups created by the Memorial committee, or who had only a loose connection to the World Trade Center, are located. Hamdani's mother, Talat, has been lobbying the Memorial to acknowledge her son as a police cadet and as a first responder at the Memorial.[62] Although Hamdani received a full police department funeral after his body was discovered months after the attacks, the September 11 Memorial did not list his name in the section of the Memorial designated for NYPD first responders, but instead in a section for those with no other connection to the World Trade Center or to other victims. His mother has spent several years advocating that her son's name be moved.[63]

Arabic-language brochures[edit]

Among its brochures translated into at least ten foreign languages, the September 11 Memorial did not include an Arabic version.[64] The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee questioned this decision in a letter to the memorial, and Raed Jarrar stated, “Our fear is that there is a political intention behind the exclusion.”[64] The September 11 Memorial told the New York Post: “As Arabic-speaking visitors currently represent our 25th-largest group, Arabic translations are not yet among the initial foreign language editions.”[64]


The September 11 Museum was formally dedicated on May 15, 2014[2] and officially opened to the public on May 21, 2014.[65][66][67][68] Exhibits in the museum include 23,000 images, 10,300 artifacts, and nearly 2,000 oral histories of the dead provided by friends and loved ones,[68] in addition to over 500 hours of video.[3]



The Museum is an underground museum which has various artifacts of September 11, 2001, and pieces of steel from the Twin Towers, such as the final steel, which was the last piece of steel to leave Ground Zero in May 2002. It is built on top of the former location of the Sphere, a globe which stood in the middle of a large pool between the twin towers, that was battered but intact after the September 11 attacks. It was since moved to be displayed at Battery Park.

As of December 2011, the construction of the museum came to a temporary halt. According to the Associated Press, that was due to some financial disputes between the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and the National September 11 Memorial and Museum Foundation, deciding on who should be responsible for infrastructure costs. As of March 13, 2012, active discussions regarding to the issue began and construction resumed.[69][70]

After many false opening date expectations, there was finally an announcement that the museum would open to the general public on May 21, 2014.[65][66][67][68]


The museum was formally dedicated on May 15, 2014.[71][72][73][74] In attendance were a range of dignitaries, including President Barack Obama, former President Bill Clinton, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, former Mayors David Dinkins, Rudy Giuliani and Michael Bloomberg, as well as the current Mayor of New York, Bill de Blasio. During the hour-long ceremony, the singer LaChanze sang "Amazing Grace", which she dedicated to her husband, who was killed in the World Trade Center that day.[2] During the five days between the museum's dedication and opening, over 42,000 first responders and family members of 9/11 victims visited the museum.[75]


A ceremony was held for the opening of the museum on May 21, 2014,[3][76] in which twenty-four police officers and firefighters unfurled the restored 30 feet (9.1 m) national 9/11 flag before it was taken into the museum for permanent display.[77][78][79] The gates surrounding the museum, at the same time, were taken down—marking the first time that the gates were dismantled since September 11, 2001.[79] Tickets for the opening day were so popular that they quickly sold out.[80]

Despite the fact that the museum is designed to recall memories without causing distress,[81] counselors were available at the museum due to the number of visitors who visited the museum during its opening.[75]


The 9/11 Museum and the North Pool

Designed by Davis Brody Bond, LLP, the museum is located approximately 70 feet (21 m) below ground, and can be accessed through an entry pavilion designed by Snøhetta, a Norwegian architectural firm.[82] The entry pavilion comprises a deconstructivist design, making it resemble a partially collapsed building which mirrors the attacks of 9/11. Two of the original tridents from the Twin Towers are located in this pavilion. One of the walls of the underground museum is an exposed side of the slurry wall, the retaining wall that holds back the Hudson River and that had remained un-breached during and after September 11.[83][84] Other artifacts from Ground Zero include wrecked emergency vehicles, including a fire engine bent completely out of shape from the collapse, pieces of metal from all 7 World Trade Center buildings, recordings of survivors and first responders including 911 phone calls, pictures of all victims, photographs from the wreckage, and other media tools used to detail the destruction including the crashes, collapse, fires, jumpers, and clean-up.[85] The museum is supposedly designed to recall memories without causing distress, especially to first-responders and to families of victims.[81]


Little Syria[edit]

The World Trade Center site was once part of the Little Syria neighborhood, the center of Arab life in the United States beginning in the 1880s. The cornerstone of a Lebanese Maronite church, St. Joseph's, was found under the rubble next to St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church at 157 Cedar Street.[86] Local historians and preservation activists have requested that the National September 11 Museum include a reference to this history in the Museum's permanent exhibit in order to "help the thousands of tourists who visit the site to understand that Arab-Americans have played a patriotic role in the country's history." Yet, a spokesperson of the Museum, according to the New York Daily News, said that the Museum's "curators are not planning to include information about the area’s Arab American history in the museum’s permanent collection."[87]

Museum operation[edit]

Exterior of the museum (2012)

Tickets to the museum are priced at $24, a price which has raised some concerns. Michael Bloomberg agreed, and encouraged people to "write your congressman" for more federal funding.[88][89][90]

With the opening of the museum to 9/11 victim's families and first responders on May 15, 2014, some people expressed outrage that the museum was profiting from souvenirs that some of the victims' families found to be in poor taste. Outrage over the shop was widely covered.[91][92][93][94][95][96] Funds from souvenirs sold from the shops would go to fund the museum and memorial.[97][98][99] On May 29, 2014, a U.S.-shaped plate of cheese was among the items removed for sale from the gift shop; at the same time, it was announced that all items planned to be sold in the gift shop would be reviewed by victims' kin before being sold.[100]

Victims' families were further outraged after a May 20, 2014 black tie VIP cocktail party was held at the museum meant to recognize supporters and donors. Among the 60 attendees were former Mayor Bloomberg and representatives from Condé Nast. Family members took issue with the party, which they felt should not have been held in such proximity to the unidentified remains. The party prompted the sister of victim Robert Shay, Jr. to tweet "Did you enjoy having drinks on top of my brother's grave last night?" Shay and dozens of other visitors were further angered that first responders were turned away from the museum the day before, as staff prepared for the party. Shay commented, "I am outraged that I can't visit my brother's final resting place without an appointment but people like Mike Bloomberg can wine and dine there whenever they want. This memorial and museum is sacred ground and last night it was desecrated." A retired FDNY fire marshal stated, "You don't have cocktail parties at a cemetery."[99][101][102]

A proposal to open a Danny Meyer restaurant in the museum in mid-2014 drew outrage as well.[103][104][105]

Placement of unidentified remains[edit]

In an early-morning ceremony on May 10, 2014, the long-unidentified remains of 1,115 victims were transferred from the city medical examiner's to Ground Zero, where they would be placed in a space in the bedrock 70 feet below ground, as part of the 9/11 Museum. Reaction to the move was split among the families of the 9/11 victims, with some hailing the decision, and others protesting the location as inappropriate. Among the latter was FDNY Lt. James McCaffrey, the brother-in-law of 9/11 victim and firefighter Orio Palmer, who demanded a ground-level tomb as a more dignified location. Said McCaffrey, "The decision to put the human remains of the 9/11 dead in this basement is inherently disrespectful and totally offensive." McCaffrey stated that the remains deserves a place of prominence equal to that of the Memorial's trees and pools, and opined that the ceremony was held early in the morning due to opposition to the decision.[106]

Withdrawn proposals[edit]

Two centers were proposed and withdrawn from the World Trade Center Memorial plan in 2005:

  • The International Freedom Center – a "think tank" which was intended to draw attention to the battles for freedom through the ages. World Trade Center Memorial Foundation member Deborah Burlingame wrote in The Wall Street Journal that the center would have a mission that had nothing to do directly with the events of September 11 and could potentially criticize American policies.[107] Blogs and commentators heavily criticized the center until Governor George Pataki withdrew support for it.
  • The Drawing Center Art Gallery at the World Trade Center – Plans called for the Freedom Center to share its space with the Drawing Center in a building called the "Cultural Center." The Daily News ran a series of articles questioning whether its exhibits would be appropriate at Ground Zero based on the gallery's previous exhibits in its small SoHo quarters.


Other 9/11 memorials[edit]

Aside from the memorial constructed at Ground Zero, there are many other memorials built by various communities and municipalities throughout the United States. Many of these memorials are built around a remnant of steel from the destroyed towers. These remnants have been donated by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey through a program that has distributed more than 1,000 pieces of World Trade Center steel.[108]

A partner of the National September 11th Memorial & Museum, the 9/11 Tribute Center is located next to the Memorial on the corner of Liberty and Greenwich Streets. This small collection of galleries focuses on telling the personal stories of those who were there on September 11, 2001 and on February 26, 1993. Tribute Center Guides lead walking tours on the 9/11 Memorial, and give presentations at the 9/11 Memorial Museum on Tuesdays entitled "We Were There."[109]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ NY1 News (September 12, 2011). "Public Gets First Glimpse Of 9/11 Memorial". Retrieved September 12, 2011. 
  2. ^ a b c "Long delayed Sept 11 Memorial Museum inaugurated by Obama". United States News.Net. Retrieved May 15, 2014. 
  3. ^ a b c "National September 11 Memorial Museum opens". Fox NY. May 21, 2014. Retrieved May 21, 2014. 
  4. ^ Memorial. Period. Under Construction
  5. ^ Westfeldt, Amy (August 15, 2007). "9/11 memorial tour to stop in Charleston". The Charleston Gazette (Charleston, WV: McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via HighBeam Research (subscription required)). Retrieved May 3, 2012. "Previously known as the World Trade Center Memorial, the memorial's official name is now the National September 11 Memorial & Museum at the World Trade Center. The memorial debuted a new logo and Internet address Tuesday." 
  6. ^ Handwerker, Haim (November 20, 2007). "The politics of remembering Ground Zero – Haaretz – Israel News". Haaretz. 
  7. ^ Schuerman, Matthew. "Trade Center Memorial Name Changes, Gets Longer | The New York Observer". 
  8. ^
  9. ^ CNN Wire Staff (December 29, 2011). "Visitors to New York's 9/11 memorial top 1 million". CNN. Retrieved December 29, 2011. 
  10. ^ "Tuesday's Children". Retrieved May 21, 2014. 
  11. ^ "NATIONAL SEPTEMBER 11 MEMORIAL & MUSEUM REACHES 25th CITY ON NATIONAL TOUR". National September 11 Memorial and Museum at the World Trade Center. December 14, 2007. Retrieved September 13, 2012. 
  12. ^ "National 9/11 Memorial & Museum Tour Kicks Off in South Carolina". October 5, 2012. 
  13. ^ "National September 11 Memorial & Museum Begins National Tour of Tribute Exhibition to Raise Awareness and Support". National September 11 Memorial. Retrieved March 26, 2012. 
  14. ^ "How HUD Is Honoring the Victims of September 11th". United States Department of Housing and Urban Development. Retrieved April 21, 2014. 
  15. ^ "Construction to resume on national 9/11 museum, Bloomberg and Cuomo say". CNN. Retrieved April 22, 2014. 
  16. ^ "Cobblestone Donors". National September 11 Memorial. Retrieved March 21, 2012. 
  17. ^ "Sponsor a Cobblestone". National September 11 Memorial. Retrieved March 21, 2012. 
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