Photo by Joe Woolhead

The $500-million memorial gracing the World Trade Center site in New York City has an elegant design, which in some ways belies the difficulty in building it.

The structure, which features two deep reflecting pools, was physically tough to construct, largely due to logistics. The access road to the site was a single, 40-ft-wide lane, and nine cranes and lifts had to be stored in a small staging area.

The judges praise the project, with one noting its "magnitude of sheer simplicity with such emotional impact."

Project Team

Owner: National September 11 Memorial & Museum

Lead Design: Michael Arad/Handel Architects, New York City

Associate Architect: Davis Brody Bond Aedas, New York City

Construction Manager: Lend Lease, New York City

Engineers: WSP Cantor Seinuk and Jaros Baum & Bolles, both New York City

Landscape Architect: PWP Landscape Architecture, Berkeley, Calif.

Lighting Designer: Fisher Marantz Stone, New York City