The monumental site of Ground Zero is made in the place of the original twin towers of the World Trade Center. It is also known as the 9/11 Memorial Museum. It was opened in the memory of the victims of the attacks of 9/11, after the towers were destroyed in the September 11 attacks. Ground zero was made as a place for the remembrance of the victims. This monumental site is run by a non-profit corporation. This corporation also raises funds for the programs and operations at the museums and memorial at the WTC site.
The plan for the monument was done right after the attacks. The site for the monument was the original site of the WTC towers. The World Trade Center Memorial Foundation was formed to raise funds for the construction of the memorial and monuments in the memory of the victims. The first meeting of the corporation was held on January 4, 2005. The meeting was held to set goals for the fundraising to build the memorial. They reached their first goal of ($350 million) in April 2008.
The contract for building the memorial was given to the Michael Arad and Peter Walker. Their design was chosen as the winner of the competition held on January 6, 2004. On January 14, 2004, the final design for the memorial and monument was unveiled at a press conference in Federal National Hall Memorial.
The construction work started on March 13, 2006, using a design which was called Reflecting Absence. Initially, the relatives of the victims opposed the construction of Reflecting Absence. They said that the construction work should be above ground. After talking to relatives of the victims, the then president of the World Trade Center Memorial Foundation said the construction work will go on as planned.
In May 2006 the estimated cost of the project had exceeded $1billion.
On September 12, 2011, one day after the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks the memorial was opened to the public. But there were also very strict rules for the public who came to visit the monument.
A Callery pear tree was recovered from the rubble at the World Trade Centre during the search and rescue mission in October 2001. This tree was later called the survivor tree. This tree was in bad shape and was burned. It had only one living branch. The Department of Parks was given the task to revive the tree. In November 2001, this tree was moved to Arthur Ross Nursery in Van Cortlandt Park. In their care, the tree showed signs of new growth. Then the World Trade Center Memorial Foundation planned to replant the tree in the Ground Zero memorial site. The tree was a very important factor with the relatives of victims as it was a symbol of hope for them.
The museum was not opened for the public until May 21, 2104. It included various things left from the attack. There were many audio files of the survivors and the victims. It also consisted of the videotapes of the relatives of the victims. The museum showed 23,000 images related to the 9/11 attack. The underground hall of the museum also consists of the last remaining parts of the twin towers. The last pieces that were cleared after the rescue and cleaning mission.
Names of the Victims
Around 3000 people were injured in the attacks of the 9/11. The names of the victims were first thought to be written in a mixed arrangement. But later on, an algorithm was used to rearrange the names according to the meaningful adjacencies. The algorithm made the arrangements according to the time of attacks, first responders, visitors, or people working in the towers.
The perimeter of the north pool had the names of the employees of the north tower, the crew and passengers on Flight 11.
The perimeter of the south pool had the names of the employees of the south tower, the crew and passengers of Flight 175, 77 and 93 that collided with south tower, Pentagon, and Shanksville respectively.
The names of the companies were not written. A total 76 bronze plates were used to write the names of the victims.
This monument always gives hope to the relatives of the victims. It told them that they are not forgotten and will always be remembered.