Morningstar to Move New York Office to 4 World Trade Center
September 18, 2014
Silverstein Properties announced today that leading independent investment research provider Morningstar, Inc. has signed a 10-year, 30,000 square foot lease at 4 World Trade Center. The company Read more...

WTC Memorial Plaza Trees Take Shape

As steel and glass move skyward at the World Trade Center site, an essential part of the National September 11th Memorial Plaza is growing about 50 miles away.

 Hundreds of Swamp White Oaks and Sweetgum Trees are being tended to at a nursery in Millstone, New Jersey. By the 10th anniversary of the attacks, more than half of the planned 416 trees will have been transferred to the Memorial Plaza, forming a canopy near two reflecting pools built in the footprints of the two towers.  

Bartlett Tree Experts, the international company hired to tend to the Memorial Plaza trees, also nurtures a number of trees in Central Park. The company is no stranger to large projects, but they say this is a special undertaking.   "We were very nervous about it initially. Not that we didn't have the wherewithal to do the project, but just the importance of it. How critical it was to make sure every tree did well," said Bartlett Tree Experts CEO Wayne Dubin.  

Each tree on the 16 acre site sits in an individual planter box and is fitted with a ribbon sensor that monitors soil temperature and moisture.   "They're in giant planter boxes because we needed to make sure they're built so that when they're planted it closely resembles the planting area that they are going to be put into," said Bartlett Tree Experts Arborist Jason Bond.   Bond has been tending to the trees since they arrived in April of 2007. The trees now stand at about 30 feet tall, and are expected to grow upwards of 80 feet. They were chosen from regions within a 500 mile radius of Lower Manhattan and are being pruned to mirror each other.  

"They have a long life expectancy. And they don't suffer from any meaningful disease or insect problems. And they're both well suited for an urban environment," Dubin said.   Funding for the $8 million memorial tree project is a mix of public and private support. The National 9/11 Memorial is also offsetting the cost of the project by selling commemorative ornaments that run between $25 and $35.  

"This is a living memorial that people will be able to capture their beauty when they go there and visit these trees and see them and enjoy their shade," Bond said.   Those behind the memorial hope visitors will find growing comfort in a place marked by tragedy.