The 9/11 Memorial at Ground Zero revealed in pictures for the first time
These are the first pictures of the 9/11 Memorial at Ground Zero, a site which millions once associated with death, devastation and abject terror but has now transformed into a place of peace, tranquillity and sadness. And it has taken ten years to get this far. From Sunday onwards, Ground Zero – once a black hole of despair – will become known as the National September 11th Memorial.
Protection: A Port Authority officer provides security at the South Pool at the World Trade Center construction site in New York. It will be unveiled to the victims’ families on Sunday September 11.
Remember: Dawn breaks over the One World Trade Center building as it overlooks the ground zero memorial site one day before the tenth anniversary in New York.
First glimpse: Aeriel view of Ground Zero taken from Washington Street the day before the official 9/11 memorial service, Where the twin towers of the World Trade Centre once stood now lies two granite pools in its footprints with waterfalls cascading 30 feet below. They one-acre size pools sprawl out across the World Trade Center plaza – one to signify each fallen tower.
They are bordered by bronze panels inscribed by the names of all those who perished at the hands of terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, at the Pentagon, in New York and in Pennsylvania. When night time falls, the panels will be backlit to shine against the void. Four hundred swamp white trees line the plaza and a small clearing known as the Memorial Glade is set aside for special ceremonies, according to the New York Post.
A navy-blue flag adorned with 40 gold stars to represent the passengers and crew members who died on United Airlines Flight 93 billows high above the site.
Memorial pool: A worker looks up from the illuminated North Pool at the World Trade Center construction site in New York two days before it is due to open to the public.
Mirror image: The World Trade Center construction site is reflected in a shop window in New York. National and city leaders will commemorate the ten-year anniversary of the attacks on Sunday
As well as the stars, a white ring encircles around an image of the twin towers to form the shape of a pentagon to honour the 184 who perished both at the Pentagon and aboard American Airlines Flight 77.
And the twin towers, standing proud in the centre of the flag with the numbers nine and 11 and the words ‘we remember’ represents the thousands who perished on the morning of September 11 when two planes crashed into the buildings.
The memorial’s designer, Michael Arad, was a young, little-known architect whose plan was selected out of 5,200 proposals.
He told CBS: ‘These two acre-sized voids are like a moment of silence and what we do with that moment of silence depends on us. We just want to make sure everything is done very carefully. We’re building for the ages.’
Serene: A view of the south pool waterfall with the One World Trade Centre in the background last month as work continued on the memorial site which will officially open tomorrow
Today: Amid on-going construction at the site, the stand for the September anniversary ceremonies sits in front of one of the memorial pools at the World Trade Center. President of the National 9/11 Memorial Joe Daniels told the New York Post: ‘We remember the towers standing, the towers falling, the devastation on the pile, the empty pit.
‘And to move to a place of grace and beauty is something that the entire country can feel proud of.’
The memorial opens to the 9/11 families on Sunday and to the public on Monday. Visitors must reserve visitor passes in advance on the memorial’s Website, 911memorial.org