Rising: Rebuilding Ground Zero DVD

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  • Additional Details
  • Format: DVD
  • Rating: Not Rated
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Region: 1 Region?
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Language: English
From Steven Spielberg comes the story of Americans rebuilding a 16 acre plot in lower Manhattan and healing a nation in the process. The new World Trade Center, which will rise 1,776 ft, will embody America's physical response to the 9/11 attacks.

Ep. 1) Reclaiming the Skyline Part 1: After years of design, debate and delays, America's greatest skyscraper and symbol of rebirth is finally rising skyward with speed. Tower One's 20-story base - a blast-proof bunker sheathed in glass - is essentially complete. The construction crew's mission is to complete a stunning new structure that will stand as the crown jewel of the New York City skyline and deliver on the dual promises of architectural beauty and unprecedented security. And though much has been accomplished, some of the most difficult challenges remain ahead, including the grand finale: topping the towering building with a spire that is taller than most of Manhattan's buildings. Teams at all levels are working to turn the tower's 80 office floors from a skeleton into a full body. As the building's steel "bones" rise, its "muscle" (in the form of a super-strength concrete core) and "skin" (in the form of blast-resistant glass) are being methodically added to it. But this building is more than a work of steel, glass and concrete. It sets a new standard not only for safety and symbolic impact but also for sustainability. In addition to being the safest skyscraper ever built, Tower One will be one of the greenest. The structure is rewriting New York's building code and setting the 21st-century standard for high-rise construction in America.

Ep. 2) Reclaiming the Skyline Part 2: There are many reasons that Tower One is truly one of a kind. The fastest elevators in the country will be installed to get visitors to and from all 80 floors. Below ground, deep in the basement levels, will live state-of-the-art utility systems - the "guts" - that fuel the building. Tower One's new neighbors - Towers Two, Three and Four, each world-class skyscrapers in their own right - complete the mandate to replace the 10 million square feet of office space lost on 9/11. Together with Tower One, these buildings will become the pillars of New York's commercial future, engineered to withstand whatever nature or man can dish out. Imagine if this level of access and technology had been available when the Empire State Building or Eiffel Tower were being built. Imagine now, generations later, being able to look back at the "making of" those buildings and hearing the stories and perspectives of not only the the project's elite figureheads but also the guys who brought lunch boxes to work every day. What a window into those projects, and the circumstances in which they were built, we would have. Decades from now, we hope this initiative will serve to immortalize these builders, and this generation, as they push the limits of engineering, architecture and human possibility into new frontiers and rise to a challenge unlike any faced by their ancestors. Their mission: to answer the fear, anxiety and uncertainty that followed 9/11 with a structure of unmistakable clarity, strength and magnificence.

Ep. 3) A Gateway to New York: Fifty million people pass through the World Trade Center's stunning new transportation hub every year. This is Grand Central Station for the 21st century - a public cathedral that rivals its uptown counterpart in both scale and significance. Designed by world-famous architect Santiago Calatrava, this project attempts to create what could be one of the most important buildings ever constructed, in the heart of one of the busiest cities in the world, on a site more complex and closely scrutinized than any other. Almost everything about this project is unprecedented. This will be the new front door to the most important 16 acres in New York and the regional gateway to lower Manhattan. As a piece of architecture, this project will be unlike anything the city or nation has ever seen - a soaring wave of gleaming white steel ribs, seemingly floating in the air, that will radically change the landscape of downtown New York forever. But while the transit hub's above ground entryway is what will immediately catch the eye, it's the cavernous underground space below that will elevate project from just a stunning piece of architecture to one of the most vitally useful projects in New York City. On paper, it is staggering to look at - a sprawling, spacious transit hub that will seamlessly connect millions of commuters to 14 subway and PATH trains in a way no New Yorker has ever experienced. But the degree of complexity involved in physically creating the design is proportional to its brilliance. Even in a vacant lot isolated from the city, building a transit hub of this magnitude would be a tall order. But with its central placement inside the world's most complex construction site - sandwiched next to, beneath and in between several other Ground Zero mega-projects - it's become a Herculean task. But building one of the most ambitious structures ever designed is only one of their challenges. The Mayor, the Governor and Executive Director of the Port Authority have all promised (publically) that the memorial pools and plaza WILL be open for 9/11/11 to commemorate the tenth year anniversary of the attacks. This non-negotiable deadline for the Memorial dictates the priorities of virtually every piece of the site, and most directly, the transportation hub - because it just so happens that the hub's massive underground concourse is located directly BELOW the northeast end of the Plaza. In other words, this underground portion of hub (called PATH HALL) is essentially supporting the plaza-therefore construction on the plaza cannot begin until the PATH Hall is complete. So it's a race against the clock to build the framework for the hub, above which the tree-lined plaza will essentially "float." It's an engineering challenge akin to suspending Central Park 100 feet in the air. And it has to happen now.

Ep. 4) A New City: The rebuilding of Ground Zero isn't only about replacing two tall towers. It's about rebuilding an entire community. The oldest business district in America, and the devastated residential community within it, will soon be the prototype for the city of the future. Ground Zero is the nexus of that city-wide transformation.

Ep. 5) Stories from the Pile: The National September 11th Museum has a nearly impossible task: to tell the definitive story of that devastating Tuesday morning 10 years ago. For visitors next year and a hundred years from now, this will be the place to go to understand what happened. In order for one museum to shoulder such a massive responsibility, its builders and curators will have to meet some incredible challenges. The first challenges are both logistical and technological. The plan calls for an above-ground entrance pavilion in Memorial Plaza, which sounds pretty straightforward. But from there visitors will descend below the plaza into a vast underground exhibit, down into a 100,000-square-foot museum space. The museum proper will be built underneath half of the entire 16-acre World Trade Center site, alongside the Path train, beneath one of the world's largest fountains. It will not just be constructed underground - which is hard enough - but be completely enmeshed in one of the largest and most complicated construction projects in history. The degree of construction difficulty here is unprecedented, but it is necessary. Only underground can visitors experience the full measure of what the towers were and what happened to them. Underground, visitors will be able to see the foundations of the original World Trade Center and even part of the massive slurry wall that holds back the force of the Hudson River, a wall that just barely held up as the towers fell. And only underground can the museum claim the vast space it needs to explore its subject fully. Some of the 9/11 artifacts the museum will display are enormous: crushed firetrucks and taxicabs, the impact steel that took the hit from one of the planes, even the staircase survivors used to flee the North Tower. They require space. They also require ingenuity to transport them, carefully, sometimes in pieces, from their current home in a hangar at JFK airport. These engineering challenges, great as they are, will be rivaled by the challenges the curators face in telling the 9/11 story. When someone says "Sept. 11" or "World Trade Center," it conjures up so much: the horrific attacks of that day, the concentrated hatred behind them, the deaths of almost 3,000 people, the rubble at the heart of the city, the worldwide outpouring of support, the "post-9/11" shift in U.S. policy and self-image, the geopolitical tremors that shook the world. The museum has not one story to tell but a dozen, a hundred, even thousands, as it seeks to do justice not just to grand historical and political themes but also to the intensely personal experience of the victims. Visitors will be awed by the two giant tridents that formed the base of the fallen towers, but they will also be moved by handmade signs of families searching for loved ones in the aftermath. Half of those loved ones were never found; they disappeared on that day. But it's still possible that they didn't disappear without a trace, and one part of the museum will actually contain a working DNA lab whose mission is to give closure to the families of more than 1,200 victims who never had remains to bury.

Ep. 6) A Place to Mourn: On Sept. 11, 2011, President Barack Obama and the victims' families, together with thousands on site and millions watching around the world, will gather in Memorial Plaza to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the attacks on the World Trade Center. There they will consecrate the memorial to the fallen - a structure that honors the dead, inspires hope in the living, and stands as a symbol of both immense loss and courage. Some of the world's most stunning new skyscrapers are rising at ground zero today. They represent boundless optimism for the site's future. But the memorial - which seeks to preserve the solemnity of the site's tragic past - stands in stark contrast to its towering neighbors. Its design, chosen from among more than 5,000 possibilities, is simple in concept: two enormous square holes, voids in the exact footprints of the previous towers, into which flow the world's largest fountains. A brass railing around each will be carved with the names of the victims of both the 1993 and 2001 terror attacks. A forest of 400 trees native to the attack sites in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania will offer visitors shade and peace and the solace of nature. It will be beautiful, devastating, inspiring. But it won't be easy to build. Those fountains will pour down 40,000 gallons of water a minute, not a drop of which can threaten the Path trains or the museum beneath the memorial. Those trees, transplanted into acres of urban concrete, have to flourish as if in Eden, symbols of the stubborn persistence of life. Not one of them can die, since once they are in they can't be replaced. Can the engineers and builders solve every problem and test every solution by the time the memorial opens to public view? And if it works on a sheer physical level, will the structure work symbolically? Have the designers of the memorial answered the emotional needs of the victims' families and of the greater public? Is that even possible? There was a moment after the attacks of 9/11 when our hearts were full of sorrow and of pride - sorrow for the people and sense of security we had lost that Tuesday morning, but pride in the people, city and country that had responded to terror with courage, generosity and strength. That's the moment, the intensity of feeling, that Memorial Plaza has been designed to capture.
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