'Turn the Footprints Into Reflecting Pools'
By Thomas Marcussen
The World Trade Center site is hallowed ground. It should be developed as a memorial to those who lost their lives on 9/11/01, and to all people who have lost their lives in the struggle for freedom of thought.
My own idea for the development of the site as a memorial is to render the exact footprints of the two towers into reflecting pools, with sufficient surrounding parkland to allow for meaningful, effective viewing.
As the Vietnam Memorial so effectively demonstrates, there can be great power in simplicity. The symbolism of the pools would be open to the interpretation of the viewer. But the visual suggestion of depth might evoke a sense of the eternal, while the reflected surrounding buildings would show life as it is at the very moment of observation. How could the combination of these not connect the observer, and his or her moment there, with that tragic moment in history one year ago and the people who experienced it with such valor and dignity?.
There's also something of the immensity of our loss that would be captured in the size of these pools. I was in the towers several times and have a sense of the space, but I'm confident that seeing these footprints, revealing as they would the magnitude of the destruction, would take my breath away.