NOTE: The World Trade Center Museum is set to open in spring 2012.
The World Trade Center Museum is one element of the National 9/11 Memorial, standing at the site where the Twin Towers once stood in Manhattan. Charged with the task of bearing witness to terrorist attacks of February 26, 1993, and September 11, 2001, the museum is part of the Manhattan renaissance after the terrorist attacks changed everything.
Long before the targeted opening date, work began on the museum, establishing its mission and assembling the collection. With such an daunting task, great care has been taken to create a museum to honor the memory of the nearly 3,000 people who perished and the countless lives changed by those two fateful days.
When visitors step into the World Trade Center Museum, they will have the opportunity to reflect on those days, whether they remember the story well or weren’t yet born. The architectural elements and exhibits help place these terrorist attacks and accompanying events in historical context, while allowing time for personal reflection.
The museum’s entryway is located in a pavilion area with a soaring glass atrium, housing two of the Gothic towers from one of the original buildings. At 70 feet tall, the steel structures are large-scale reminders of the buildings that once stood here. Visitors will follow a path reminiscent of the ramp taken by the construction workers tasked with cleaning up in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks. You’ll also have the chance to view more exhibits and see the Survivors’ Staircase, the remnant of the Vesey Street Stairs that many hundreds of people used to find safety.
The final element of the museum brings you to the World Trade Center site’s original foundations and a temporary exhibit gallery that focuses on the telling the story of September 11 and the people affected by them.
The World Trade Center Museum is the second major project to open at the National 9/11 Memorial, located within steps of the memorial’s twin reflecting pools and the bronze etchings of the victims’ names. The outdoor memorial opened in 2011 on the tenth anniversary of the terrorist attacks. The final element to rise from the ashes is Freedom Tower, a soaring office building with a planned observation gallery and other public event space, and it will be the tallest building in the United States.