SHANKSVILLE, Pa. – The National Park Service on Monday released new architectural drawings of the first phase of the Flight 93 memorial, which is to be dedicated in time for the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks this fall.
One rendering shows a pair of white marble walls framing a ceremonial gateway that provides an entrance to a walkway tracing the path the airplane followed before crashing into the rural field.
The other shows a separate memorial gateway — an open-air, concrete structure. A smaller glass enclosure will help provide shelter during bad weather.
Only relatives of the 40 passengers and crew who died will be allowed to enter the actual crash site, but the public will be able to view it. There will be 40 vertical marble slabs along one side of the flight path walkway, each with a name of one of the victims on it.
The Families of Flight 93 say about $50 million in public and private money has been raised for the project and the dedication of the first phase is scheduled for Sept. 10.
More private funding is still needed to finish the remaining elements of the memorial, including a grove of trees, a visitor center and an entry portal with high walls framing the plane's flight path.
"It's gratifying to see our design, expressed in these renderings, will soon be realized with completion of the first phase of construction," Paul Murdoch, the memorial's architect, said in a statement. "I hope once the public experiences the opening of the memorial, they will be further motivated to support the remaining features."
United Airlines Flight 93 was traveling from Newark, N.J., to San Francisco on Sept. 11, 2001. The 9/11 Commission found that the hijackers likely wanted to crash into the White House or Capitol building but downed the jet in Pennsylvania as passengers fought back. The crash site is near Shanksville, Pa., about 65 miles southeast of Pittsburgh.
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