Tower Footprints - Memory Tower
Each footprint would be occupied with a "Memory Tower" conforming exactly to the footprint boundaries. Each Memory Tower would start at the base memorial level of 30 feet below street. The first floor of each Memory Tower would be dedicated to remains and solemn remembrance areas. The second level serves as the main lobby. The third level is the garden lobby containing the company memorials. Above this lobby, the tower portion of the building, an 80' per side square, rises from a section of the footprint. The upper tower has 11 floors, for a total of 14 floors. The external facade of the memory tower will be designed to complement the surrounding structures.
[Since the WTC competition stage 1 was completed, several other competitors released footprint design elements that are more defined and stylistically appropriate than my tower concept. As a result, I would change the street level and above footprint component of my design if the opportunity to resubmit came up. However, the lowest level devoted to remains storage, etc. would be unchanged, along with the family bedrock access rooms. The Tribute in Light equipment on the roof would also be retained.]
Remains Storage and Solemn Contemplation
The base memorial floor of each Memory Tower would be dedicated to remains and solemn remembrance. The unidentified remains from the medical examiner would be located here, split between the two footprints. A large crypt containing ash remnants from the wtc site will also be placed at this level in each building. These are the "tombs of the unknown" as this ash contains the microscopic remnants of many victims. Some family groups have requested the return of this ash, currently stored at the Fresh Kills Landfill in Staten Island, to the site. Sections of this level would be designated family using the medical examiner ID system, the rest would be public areas of contemplation and reflection. Exterior entrance doors lead to the memorial floor level.
Main Lobby - Survivor Stories
The Memory Tower main lobby serves as a multipurpose area, also with doors to the outside. Displays include tributes to the survivors of September 11th. Stories from the seriously injured are highlighted along with accounts of close escapes. The North Tower will have an area devoted to the small group who survived the collapse in the B stairwell. The South Tower features the story of survival on the 78th skylobby and above.
Company Memorial Atrium
A memorial located on the third floor of each Memory Tower is dedicated to the companies that lost members on 9-11. Every company that lost an employee would be represented, whether the loss was a single individual or several hundred. Due to the amount of space needed to accommodate large name lists, those companies with substantial losses can be allocated more space. However, the largest would be no more than four times the size of companies memorializing a single lost employee. The space allocation formula allows the story of these companies to be visible, as the loss of even one employee impacts a company. This reaffirms the memorial guidelines principle that each individual victim should be recognized equally.
Company memorials for companies operating in a particular tower would be located in that tower. If the death of the employee(s) can be assigned to the attack or fall of a specific tower the memorial will also be assigned to the building. All other assignments are apportioned based on space requirements. Companies representing Pentagon and United Flight #93 victims are in this group. A glass roof encloses this floor excluding the tower extension.
The 11 floors in each extended tower can be allocated for a variety of applications. The plan reserves a section of the top floor and the entire floor below it in each tower as a family viewing room. The skyward tone of this room provides a different experience from the ground-based first floor area. The floor just below this will be designated for friends and colleagues of victims, who do not qualify for family room access. This area will also accommodate survivors of the attacks. The other floors provide expansion space for the future, special exhibits, etc.
Towers of Light Display
The flat roof of each Memory Tower will serve as a permanent launching point for a restored tribute in light display. In order to minimize the impact on the neighborhood and regional wildlife, the lights would only be used 11 nights a year. They include September 10 and 11, February 26, Labor Day, March 11, and 6 other dates to be determined later.
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