Wednesday, Nov. 24, 2010

Ground Zero: Out of the Ashes

The rebuilding of the World Trade Center site has been perhaps the most complicated — and important — construction project in American history.

Never before have so many moving parts been required to fit together — above, around and under train lines that have continued to run through the site.

Never before have so many government agencies and actors — there have been eight governors of New York and New Jersey since the attacks — been involved in a single project. And never before have so many citizens felt such a deep personal connection to a site and taken such an active role in planning its future.

As a result, the redevelopment of the site has not been as smooth or quick as anyone would have liked. But today, the progress at the site is unmistakable — and that's incredibly heartening.

A tower that will rise 1,776 ft. is now 48 stories above ground. Thousands of construction workers are on-site night and day, building not only new skyscrapers but also an inspiring memorial, which we will open on the 10th anniversary of 9/11.

The rebuilding of the site is an affirmation of the American spirit — of our faith in our future and in our freedoms. The engineers and hard hats at the World Trade Center site recognize that they are working on more than just a construction job. They are rebuilding a civic and commercial center that symbolizes the openness and opportunity that have always defined our city. And most important, they are helping our country fulfill a sacred obligation to those we lost, honoring their memory — and our nation's principles and values — with every steel beam that swings into place.

Bloomberg is the mayor of New York City