A Winter Garden, Manhattan, NYC

We were in New York City on Sept. 11, 2011, the anniversary of the 9/11 tragedy.  The city was busy, thoughtful and highly secured.  We walked to the site of the World Trade Center memorial and rebuilding.  The enormity of the space and an awakening sense of how intense the event was in this neighborhood grew as we explored.

In the World Trade Center there is an overlook of the construction site and the memorial.  We were directed to walk toward the “Winter Garden.”  Interior hallways link many buildings in lower Manhattan and we continue to follow the hall way until we came to this large open space.

The Winter Garden is a dozen Fan Palm trees reaching high toward a glass ceiling.  Striking architecture accented by trees symbolizing a winter escape to warmer climates for the many hardworking people going to and from their offices.

 

This space and the trees were damaged in the collapse of the twin towers.  All has been rebuilt since that date.  Replacing the trees was important to bring that sense of green and nature into the building.

Opposite the garden is a wide bank of windows looking out on the construction site of the 4 office buildings currently under construction to replace the destroyed properties.  The completed memorial pools are just visible.    Here too, trees are part of the symbolism  used to honor the victims of the attack.  412 trees have been planted surrounding the reflecting pools to provide a sense of life, reverence and comfort to visitors.

The trees, all swamp white oaks, can reach 60 to 80 feet at maturity, live as long as 300 to 350 years, and are golden-leafed in the fall.   In time the construction will be completed, the trees will grow and we will all go forward.

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