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Recollection Plaza proposes to restore the once highly utilized pedestrian connections across this site with its adjacent surroundings. The traverse, once along side the awesome Twin Towers, would now be experienced on top of the worlds largest clear span glass tensile structure. The monumental scale of the enclosure is heightened by a crystal dodecahedron piercing the surface as if set in motion by the forces of the events which took place here. In addition to evoking a powerful expression of what might be, it borrows important cues from what once was. The crystal made of recycled cast glass, is set into a tensegrity structure that transfers the axial loads to bedrock while appearing to never touch the geometry.

While crossing the site diagonally from the Southwest towards the Northeast, you are keenly aware of the sacred ground that is being protected and are offered a distinctive perspective of the memorial site which pays tribute to the many thousands who met a tragic end here and in the related attacks of September 11, 2001 and February 26, 1993. On the southwest edge of the site is a replica of the center section of the southwest fa├žade of the pentagon that was destroyed and subsequently rebuilt. It serves as a gateway to the memorial site, boundary colonnade above the plaza, and memorial to the lost and missing of Washington within.

On the footprint of the north tower, is a replica of the towers observation deck. Its focus, once outward to the skyline is turned inward towards the list of names.

The names of each of the dead, missing, and perpetrators are backlit by an individual laser beam. Red for the deceased fire and rescue personnel, white for the confirmed dead, blue for the missing, and green for the terrorists responsible for the attacks. The green lasers do not illuminate the terrorists name on the black Onyx Panel. At the foot of the escalators from September 11th Place, a visitor will encounter 41 crystal spires representing the lost lives of UAL Flight 93. They define the northern edge of a planted field of corn.

Looking to the north, at the North Tower footprint, stands a replica of the Antenna mast, once 110 stories above this location. It represented a beacon in the New York skyline for navigation, communication and broadcast. At its base is an observation platform that orients an observer away from the mast and north to a 180 degree LED screen projecting the view once attained from the observation deck of Tower 1 or over the epicenter of the 1993 blast in the sub level 2 of Tower 1. Here the foundation blocks have been shaken and within the blast zone, Video cubes display images of terror, destruction, heroics, war and peace. At the lowest level is a granite disk with engraved concentric circles reminiscent of the memorial by Elyn Zimmerman.

There rests the fractured block with the name John that was recovered from the wreckage.

The space behind the screen and north of the cultural center is dedicated to the families and offers a place where private contemplation may occur. Above the plaza at this location is a space devoted to the crushed Fire Truck.

Access from the Video Cubes to the slurry wall at bedrock is through a fractured corridor ramp that is pierced by rays of light. At this location a mausoleum wall for final resting place of the unidentified remains from the World Trade Center site.

The World Trade Center Memorial Competition

NYC, New York

Recollection Plaza

Photography: ©

Client: Lower Manhattan Development Corporation

Completed: 2003

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