The National September 11 Memorial & Museum, also called the 9/11 Memorial & Museum, honors the 2,983 people killed in the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, as well as those killed in the 1993 bombing of the original World Trade Center. It also commemorates the first responders and others who risked their lives to help.
The memorial consists of two waterfalls and reflecting pools set within the footprints of the original Twin Towers. The names of every man, woman and child who died in both attacks are inscribed around the pools in bronze. In addition, more than 400 swamp white oak trees surround the plaza, signifying hope and renewal.
The museum has 110,000 square feet of exhibition space, documenting the events of the attacks and exploring their continuing significance through artifacts, narratives and interactive technology. Because of the emotional subject matter, the museum says some material may not be appropriate for visitors younger than 10.
Key Features of the Landmark
The memorial occupies eight of the World Trade Center’s 16 acres. Michael Arad of Handel Architects designed the memorial, and the landscape architecture firm Peter Walker and Partners designed the grounds. Each of the reflecting pools is about an acre in size. The plaza also includes a small clearing called the Memorial Glade for special ceremonies and gatherings.
Davis Brody Bond designed the museum, which sits about 70 feet below ground and is reached through a sloping pavilion. The museum includes more than 40,000 images from the attacks, about 3,500 oral recordings, about 500 hours of video and 14,000 artifacts. These include twisted steel recovered from the South Tower; a remnant of the stairs from Vesey Street called the Survivors’ Stairs; a wrecked fire engine; a tattered American flag; and personal items such as boots, a firefighter’s ax, and a camera.
History of the National September 11 Memorial & Museum
2003: The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation launches an international competition to design a memorial to honor the lives lost on 9/11.
2004: The winning memorial design is unveiled.
2006: Construction begins on the memorial.
2007: The memorial and museum, which is operated by a nonprofit institution, launches a four-month national exhibit touring 25 cities in 25 states. It displays photographs and artifacts from the site, as well as a film with firsthand accounts of the attacks.
2011: The memorial opens to the public on September 12, one day after the attacks’ 10th anniversary.
2014: The museum opens to the public in May.
2018: Plans are unveiled for a path through Memorial Glade to honor first responders and others who became sick or died from exposure to toxins as a result of the 2001 attacks.
Location & Tourism
The National September 11 Memorial & Museum is located at 180 Greenwich St. in Manhattan. The memorial is free and open daily from 7:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. To find a name on the memorial, visit the Memorial Guide online at https://names.911memorial.org/.
The museum is open Sunday to Thursday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. and until 9 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. Museum admission starts at $24 for adults, with discounts for children, seniors, college students and veterans.
Interesting Facts About the National September 11 Memorial & Museum
- On a wall in the museum is a quote from Virgil: “No day shall erase you from the memory of time.”
- The museum’s Foundation Hall includes part of the slurry wall, the original World Trade Center’s retaining wall designed to keep the Hudson River from flooding the basement.
- The official name of the memorial is Reflecting Absence.
- On the Memorial Plaza is a callery pear tree from the 1970s recovered from the rubble in 2001. Nicknamed the Survivor Tree, it was replanted at the site in 2010.
- The names around the North Memorial Pool include those who worked in or visited the North Tower on 9/11; those killed in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing; and the passengers and crew of American Airlines Flight 11.
- The names around the South Memorial Pool include those who worked in or visited the South Tower or other parts of the original World Trade Center complex; the passengers and crew of United Airlines Flight 175; those who worked at or visited the Pentagon on 9/11; the passengers and crew of American Airlines Flight 77; the passengers and crew of United Airlines Flight 93; and first responders who received the 9/11 Heroes Medal of Valor, which the White House awarded in 2005.
Directions to Belluck & Fox from the National September 11 Memorial & Museum
Belluck & Fox’s NYC office is located in Midtown at 546 Fifth Ave., 5th Floor, New York NY 10036. From the 9/11 Memorial & Museum, head northeast on Church Street toward Dey Street, then use the left two lanes to turn left slightly onto Sixth Avenue. Turn right onto West 46th Street, then right onto Fifth Avenue. Our office is also accessible by public transportation. Take the M55 bus from Church Street at Liberty Street to West 44th Street at Sixth Avenue; or take a northbound N subway train from Cortlandt Street to Times Square and transfer to the Flushing-bound 7 train to Fifth Avenue.
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