World Trade Center Competition
New York, NY
(Iverson Scheme)

The visitor finds the names of the victims of the terrorist attacks inscribed into the surface of the slurry wall, and in that instant recognizes that this wall is a massive tombstone. Each inscription is accompanies by a copper weep hole. These weep holes, designed to release hydrostatic pressure from the earth behind the wall, symbolically 'cry' for each victim. The slurry wall, waving survived the attack on September 11th and having 'witnesses' and carried in the structure shock of the event, is a sacred artifact. The proposed memorial engages this previously invisible wall, now sadly visible to us. Arched buttresses reach out to support the slurry wall, their cool concrete underbellies creating a shadowy graveled passage for the viewing of the wall. The many openings between and within the buttress allow for a dappling of natural light throughout the day. Their arched stepped backs invite seating for events within the memorial site grounds. The landscape bows down in homage to the foot of the slurry wall, the arc of its glassy back inviting blanketed repose as well as graduated access to the memorial wall. This memorial purposefully seeks to engage the effects of: sunlight as it slips through the openings into silent graveled walks; gravel, as it crunches beneath our feet, the sound tickling up our spine; water, as it reflects and refracts light dissolving the solid surfaces of spaces below; and water, as it seeps from copper openings creating a patina surface over time and encouraging the concrete in sprouting mossy life.

It is through our senses that our emotions, our internalized thoughts, are brought to the exterior of the world. With our emotions we feel the dappled sunlight, smell the discovered and quiet shade, and are mesmerized by the refracted light of water. It is with our emotions, engaged in the sensory knowledge of the world, that we celebrate life and mourn its passing.


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