The first train cars that will return to the
rebuilt station under the World Trade Center
were the last to leave it, moving terrified
passengers as far as possible from the
collapsing twin towers. The eight PATH train
cars come back Nov. 23 to a station that has
the same name as before: "World Trade
The sign, still in bubble wrap, hung
Thursday on a platform that will open to the
public for the first time since Sept. 11,
2001. On the restored platform for Tracks 3
and 4, Gov. George Pataki stood with trade
center leaseholder Larry Silverstein and his
architects, Daniel Libeskind and David Childs,
and looked at the space where the towers
stood. "You have the sense of the tragedy
that happened here," Pataki said.
"And then," he said, turning to the
sign. "you see the World Trade Center.
That's what we have to do: move beyond and
decision to keep the station's name was as
deliberate as every other detail of the
restored temporary rail station, which is
expected to serve 50,000 daily commuters.
Most important was whether commuters would
have views of the trade center site. The only
view will be at the platform. On Thursday,
those touring the site saw construction
trailers, stacks of steel beams, an American
flag. At the top of the stairs, screens will
shield the site from public view.
Victims' family members requested that
passengers coming through the train station
have only a limited view of the towers'
Above ground, passengers will enter the
temporary station on Church Street and descend
into a stark steel and concrete space. The
16-month $253 million restoration of the
temporary station involved gutting the train
tunnels down to their iron frames and
installing nearly 7,000 feet of track and
50,000 tons of steel.
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