The 9/11 Memorial: A Different Kind of Public Space

Scheduled to open in two months on the day after the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, project architect Michael Arad and landscape architect Peter Walker discuss their masterpiece.
July 11, 2011, 10am PDT | Jeff Jamawat
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"The design, unlike most places in New York, is about emptiness and nothingness. [I]t's an emptiness that's full of meaning, the same way that a moment of silence is filled with intention," explains Mr. Arad in an interview with Sophia Hollander for The Wall Street Journal.

Hollander observes:

"Unlike monuments in battlefields or along the National Mall, this eight-acre site is embedded within one of the country's densest commercial districts. [...] The massive pools, each stretching about a full acre, dominate the site. As you step closer and peer into the void, cascading water mutes even the hammering, blaring and booms of the construction site. [...] Although the names appear to be scattered randomly around the rims of the pools, they have been grouped to reflect relationships among friends, families and colleagues, as requested by families."

The 9/11 Memorial costs $700 million to build with an estimated $60 million annual operating cost.

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Published on Sunday, July 10, 2011 in The Wall Street Journal
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