93-Foot-Tall “Tower of Voices” to Commemorate 9/11 Victims with Wind Chime Soundscape


Courtesy of Arup

Courtesy of Arup

Sixteen years after the tragic events of 9/11, the final major element of the Flight 93 National Memorial has been revealed.

Located in rural in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, the memorial commemorates the 40 passengers who sacrificed their own lives to wrest control away from the hijackers of United Flight 93, preventing the plane from hitting its intended target of the United States Capitol Building.

In 2009, Paul Murdoch Architects, in collaboration with Nelson Byrd Woltz Landscape Architects and Arup Engineering, was selected to design the national memorial at the crash site. Employing a reverent masterplan that traced the airplane’s final movements, the architects designed a series of reflective elements as a solemn reminder of the day’s events. All of these elements have since been completed, with the exception of the plan’s most sensory landmark, the 93-foot-tall “Tower of Voices.”

Marking the entrance and exit of the memorial, the cast-in-place concrete tower will house forty wind chimes – one for each passenger – designed within Arup’s SoundLab to create an acoustic experience with each gust of wind. The acoustic element was especially important to the architects as a representation of the final moments shared between the passengers and their loved ones via cell phone calls.

“The last memory that many [family members] have of the people on the plane is through voices on those phone calls,” said Paul Murdoch.

The Tower of Voices is scheduled to debut in 2018.

Read more about the memorial, here.

Flight 93 National Memorial / Paul Murdoch Architects

United Airlines Flight 93 was one of the four planes hijacked during the September 11, 2001, attacks in the United States. It was on this flight that 40 passengers and crew members courageously gave their lives to thwart a planned attack on the Nation’s Capital. Tragically, the plane crashed in Western Pennsylvania with no survivors.

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