World Trade Center Steel Recycled into Hundreds of Memorials Around the Country

by , 08/19/11
filed under: Architecture,News

After September 11th, most of the World Trade Center steel was trucked off to New Jersey salvage yards where it was broken down and sent all over the world for reuse. However, over 1,000 pieces of debris were placed in a JFK airport hangar for the Port Authority to oversee. Recently, the PA announced a program to distribute the steel to anyone who requested it for a 9/11 memorial site. The requirements were the memorial be public and free of admission charge, and the interested party would handle its own steel transportation. With nearly 2,000 applicants, the program has assisted in erecting 225 September 11th memorials throughout the country.

The steel recycling first made headlines in 2009 with the unveiling of the navy battleship USS New York. The ship included over 7 tons of World Trade Center steel and served as one of the first permanent tributes to the victims. Steel has now found homes in local firehouses in Michigan and Minnesota, town halls in New Jersey and Alaska and even the Atomic Testing Museum in Las Vegas. Cities are receiving a variety of pieces from ones that can fit in your hand to bundles of entire beams.

The community of Coatesville, Pennsylvania will receive the largest shipment so far. They have requested 500 tons of steel for its future National Iron and Steel Heritage Museum. The 10 “steel trees” they will be receiving made up the first few floors of the World Trade Center north tower and were actually built in that very town over 50 years ago. The museum will not only be a memorial for September 11th but will also teach the lifecycle and history of steel production in Pennsylvania.

One steel beam was recently sent to Arizona to be incorporated in a memorial for Christina-Taylor Green, the 9 year old girl who was fatally injured in the January shootings. Her birthday was September 11th. The memorial statue titled “The Freedom’s Angel of Steadfast Love” also includes pieces from the Pentagon and US airlines Flight 93.

The most touching piece of World Trade Center debris did not need to be reused to moved at all. Two beams found in rubble that resembled a christian cross have stayed in or near the site for the past 10 years. It will be a highlight and permanent piece of the 9/11 Memorial Museum, opening next month.

Via NY Daily News

Images via Wikimedia Commons



  1. dumbfounded September 8, 2011 at 2:57 pm
    Wow if I had only known that larry over at the trenton salvage yard got thousands of tons of wtc steel I could have bought it and donated it to deserving causes.
  2. hawaiiguy August 20, 2011 at 6:02 pm
    Wow, gotta say that's not really what I call an inspiring use of materials. Until the "Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth" are acknowledged (and granted a hearing)for their tireless forensic investigation and connection of dots, I's, and T's, the material should still be evidence. The beyond military grade nano thermite found throughout the WTC towers 1,2 and 7 carnage, and all over Manhattan should not be distributed as memorials and museum pieces. A grade "F" investigation that became the "9/11 commission report" is still contested by 10's of thousands of brilliant forensic, and structural professionals around the world. Displaying it as artwork and warships does not change the fact skyscrapers cannot collapse against the laws of physics!
  3. lazyreader August 19, 2011 at 4:05 pm
    What the hell is this. Ode to joyous scrap metal. I doubt children can play on it, not without cutting themselves up. Old architectural styles like bronze statues and fountains, even if they are memorials are great for children to play on. Better looking and less depressing.