On a beautifully sunlit Friday morning, Manhattan’s new World Trade Center — the Freedom Tower — reached its full symbolic height of 1,776 feet when steelworkers bolted the 408 foot spite on top of the structure.
This now makes One World Trade the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere. But more than that, it’s an “in your face” gesture to al-Qaida, who claimed credit for the 9/11 attack that destroyed the twin towers of the original World Trade Center. It’s also a warning to all terrorist organizations that we will not be humbled, we will never be defeated.
While the building still has significant construction before its scheduled 2014 opening, the installation brought cheers from New Yorkers, and from people around the country.
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The spire contains 18 steel sections and three communication rings. The first — and heaviest — steel section was installed in January. It weighs more than 67 tons, according to a statement from the Port Authority.
NBC News’ Chief Environmental Affairs correspondent Anne Thompson posted the above photograph on Twitter. WeaselZippers referred to it as the “Pic of the Day,” and I couldn’t agree more — it’s magnificent. Thompson included the following tweet with the photograph:
Steven Plate, construction director for One World Trade, told CNN that the spire will serve as a “beacon that’ll be seen for miles around and give a tremendous indication to people around the entire region, and the world, that we’re back and we’re better than ever.”
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