Memorial is Ready

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The 9/11 Memorial plaza looked just about ready to open last Thursday as Downtown community board members took in the oaks and the empty square reflecting pools built at the Twin Towers' footprints. The memorial pools with water flowing down the sides will open on the 10th anniversary of the attacks, during a ceremony Sunday for family members of those who were killed. President Barack Obama, former President George W. Bush and former Mayor Rudy Giuliani will be attending with other elected leaders.

The plaza opens to the public Sept. 12, although all of the free tickets for entry on Monday have already been reserved. As of Tuesday, there were still a few available spots as early as Sept. 16, and more times beginning Sept. 22 (reserve at

Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver arranged a tour after community leaders were denied a special visiting time in September.

Many thanked Silver for arranging the preview and Silver said he was glad they at least got a chance to view it before it opens. "This is Day 1 minus two," he said.

Residents were mostly impressed with the memorial, comparing it favorably to the vast, concrete plaza that used to be there.

Pat Moore, who lives across from the WTC, said she liked the trees but could do without the reflections on 1 WTC (left center photo). As a plane flew over the Hudson, she said, "I really don't like that you can see planes flying into the building."

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