Next Monday, for the first time, the public will be able to visit the beautiful yet solemn 9/11 Memorial. It’s been a mad rush to meet the 10th anniversary deadline, but it appears that the workers at Ground Zero have succeeded in getting everything ready on time.
As reported by the New Jersey Record:
“On a recent tour, the memorial appeared nearly ready for the ceremony: The massive voids shaped in the footprints of the original towers held shallow pools of water. The protective blankets covering the nearly 3,000 victims’ names etched into bronze parapets had been removed; a worker was waxing the metal surface. And new plant life added vibrancy to the plaza’s stone floor: All 225 swamp white oak trees had been planted, and landscapers were touching up freshly laid stretches of lush Kentucky bluegrass and beds of ivy, all of which withstood the winds and storm surge of Hurricane Irene.”
Architect, Michael Arad, who won the design competition for the memorial, has said his design is meant to convey the presence of absence. I look forward to seeing what Arad has created to honor those who lost their lives.
On Sunday, President Obama will lead a ceremony on the site for victims’ families. The names of all of the victims of 9/11 will be read, including those who died in New York, Washington, DC, and Shanksville, Pennsylvania. There will also be several moments of silence to mark the major events that occurred that tragic day ten years ago. That ceremony is only open to invited guests.
9/11 Memorial organizers say that 350,000 passes to visit the site have already been reserved by the public. If you would like to visit the 9/11 Memorial, you must reserve an advance pass for a specific date and time. Passes are free, and can be reserved at the 9/11 Memorial reservation system.
Keep in mind that the 9/11 Museum will not open until September 2012, so if you plan to visit prior to then you will only see the plaza area, featuring the two memorial pools and the inscribed names of victims. You will also be able to observe the construction of One World Trade Center, which is still in progress.
Photo Credit: Squared Design Lab