The Ascent represents
the Future and our Hope for a better world. The Ascent is the last
destination completing a visit to the Memorial. It is illuminated
by reflected sunlight in daytime, and reflected moonlight at night.
While the Ascent is a place to contemplate  the Memorial's message
before transitioning back to our daily lives, it is also a destination
The Ascent is part of the new World Trade Center's daily rhythm.
People will bring their lunch and sit a quiet and thoughtful environment.
Children, perhaps bored or unmindful of the significance of the
Memorial, have room to run. The space can be used for public events
and ceremonies, acting as a reviewing stand facing the more formal
PAST. The lower wall beneath the Culture Museum cantilever can double
as a projection screen supporting those public events, or as a display
surface (hidden and distinct from the Garden of Memories).
The Ascent also
represents change. Most importantly, the Illumination changes five
times each day on the moments of the four attacks- the 1993 bombing,
when the planes hit each tower, the Pentagon building and when Flight
93 fell from the sky over Pennsylvania.
Its use varies with time and the seasons. Inserted within each ramp
are a swirling mass of triangular planting beds. Initially, these
beds will be filled with flowers and bushes, while their lips serve
as additional seating. Over time, perhaps once a decade, artists
will be commissioned to design a sculpture reinterpreting the meaning
of these events. Slowly, decade by decade, each planting bed will
capture, in stone or steel, those moments in time.
|The Ascent protects the South Tower Footprint . Surrounded
by grass on one side, and the Waterfall on the other, it is
made from concrete aggregate infused with green and grey stone.
At the lower corner is a 40x40 ft reflecting pool, fed by a
stream from the Waterfall. The Ascent's perimeter is demarcated
by inset squares of frosted glass every 1 meter, on the same
period and size of the structural columns of the WTC. These
squares will be softly illuminated at night. The overall shape
is a dihedral series of ramps, rising toward the southeastern
corner of the site, with the uppermost ramp parallel to the
ramp off Liberty. The ramps, steps and seating are all oriented
towards the Illumination.