Public Employee Press
Memorial winner, city worker
Architect provides a bold, clear and simple
design for World Trade Center site.
Michael Arad presents his design on Jan. 14 for the World Trade
Center Memorial, with two voids where the towers once stood.
The announcement that a New York
City Housing Authority architect had won the design competition for the
World Trade Center Memorial stunned political leaders and design professionals,
including Michael Arad, 34, the winner.
The memorial was officially unveiled Jan. 14 in a packed room at Federal
Hall in downtown Manhattan. Seated on the podium with Mayor Michael R.
Bloomberg and Gov. George E. Pataki, Mr. Arad wore a blue shirt, a black
suit, and a slightly shell-shocked smile.
Wake up Michael! Its real, said Vartan Gregorian, president
of the Carnegie Corporation of New York and the chair of the 13-person
memorial jury that selected the winning design. Mr. Arads inspirational
Reflecting Absence was one of 5,201 submissions from 63 countries.
Many people responded to 9/11 with a pencil and a sketchbook,
said Mayor Bloomberg. Im certainly proud of having Michael
Arad as a New York City employee. The memorial will be the focal point
of downtown Manhattan.
The room for unidentified
remains is at bedrock. The sound of the water shelters the space
from the city, said Michael Arad.
Other accolades celebrated Mr. Arads
civil service status. HA Chair Tino Hernández portrayed Mr. Arad
as an outstanding example of our typical employee: smart, enthusiastic,
hard-working, dedicated, talented and committed to providing the best
for our residents.
Civil Service Technical Guild Local 375 President Claude Fort said he
was delighted at the news. Mr. Arad is a great example of the quality
of the civil service workers in our local.
We have always known that our members do a great job and that the city
can rely on them for creative and even inspired work.
Aerial view of the memorial design,
The young architect received a masters degree from Georgia Tech
College of Architecture and then worked at Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates
for three years. He joined the HAs design team last April and has
worked on two projects for the city: the headquarters of Police Service
Area 8 in Throgs Neck, Bronx and PSA 2 in Brooklyn.
At the ceremony, Mr. Arad spoke softly and emotionally as he explained
the concept of his design. It is a very difficult task Ive
been entrusted with. I understand just how important this is. I will do
my very best not to disappoint the families of the victims. He spoke
of the enormous ribbon of names that will be part of the memorial,
which has been described as, the simplest and for that very reason,
the most powerful of all the proposals.
All relevant information about the design competition can be viewed at: