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 13 Months: The World Trade Center13pt

Month Six: February

Mott Street

February brings the Lunar New Year, the year of the Black Horse. Lion dancers roam Chinatown, bringing good luck and chasing away evil spirits.

Flag scarves and fake firecrackers
Lion dancers

Firecrackers were banned several years ago, so children settle for white twisted snap crackers.

No tents on the Battery

Farther south, the National Guard have left Battery Park; debate goes on about air quality in Battery Park City, and grants for nearby residents willing to commit to two more years downtown.

Outside the Battery Park theater (still closed)


A friend living across from St Paul’s Chapel shows me his only view of the progress at Ground Zero: a blurred reflection in a neighbor’s window.

He talks us in to another, unoccupied apartment with a better view. Gray dust from the collapse is still matted into the window corners.

A field of trailers
St. Paul’s

The progress is impressive, though cranes still claw at the piles of broken beams. It’s hard to tell exactly, but it looks like they are now working three floors down.

Steady progress

Barge crane

Heritage Trail marker

The rubble makes its way on trucks to Pier 25, where it is offloaded onto barges bound for sorting at the Staten Island Fresh Kills Landfill.

Building the future

More streets have been reopened near the site, and weekend crowds fill every new opening.

I notice an NYPD officer standing and flipping through a booklet of faces between scans of the crowd.

Checking faces


Feel free to feel better

Using airplanes to kill

The other twin towers


St. Paul’s Chapel wall

New world disorder

Got human rights?
Most victims

Each week brings a new wave of posters and stickers.

Shut down the WEF
Defend your country
World Financial Center

Disaster cards, with target

Each week also brings a new wave of conflicting messages and images of Arab men.

Instant stereotype: just cut and apply

Both missing from the 90th Floor
Remember her on Valentine’s Day

Taxi map

A Valentine from Puff Daddy

Mid-month, Valentine’s Day brings another flood of emotional imagery, not all of it loving.

Grand Street

And with it, more corporate tie-ins.

Tommy Hilfiger

Brooklyn Bridge

Pier 16 Ticketbooth

A new city policy requires tickets for the viewing platform, to cut down congestion at the WTC site, and increase foot traffic at the neglected South Street Seaport.

Ticket rules

Map and platform ticket
WTC Tickets
Pier 16

A maze of police barriers around the ticket booth awaits the weekend lines, but during the week the maze is empty.

If you have time
Reaching for space
Over the platform edge

Pier 17

At 5:00 I turn in my ticket, and wait in line for my three minutes on the platform.


Mayor Giuliani’s signature has faded and been overwritten.

FDNYPD Forever

Nine years ago today, the North Tower of the World Trade Center was bombed.

The platform at dusk