With the 10th anniversary of September 11 just over a month away, and plans for its commemoration being finalized, some are questioning whether the site of the attacks should still be called Ground Zero. Critics argue that the city of New York should re-embrace the original name, the World Trade Center, to reflect the renewal that has taken place at the site, and jettison a name that evokes years of emptiness and impasse. Is it time for a Ground Zero name change?
Yes, it's no longer an apt moniker: "Go take a look at it — it is not Ground Zero anymore," says the president of the pro-business organization Alliance for Downtown New York, Elizabeth Berger, as quoted in The Wall Street Journal. Tower 1 now rises nearly 70 stories, and Tower 4 is close behind. Besides, "Ground Zero is a phrase mostly used by people outside lower Manhattan," not by those who live and work near the site.
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It's important to look forward, not back: "Ten years from today, I suspect very few people will remember it as Ground Zero," says Larry Silverstein, the owner of the company that holds the lease on the site, as quoted in The Daily Mail. "It's inevitable, that's life." Ground Zero refers to the past, and many have already stopped referring to the site that way. "World Trade Center is the reference for tomorrow."
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No, it will always be Ground Zero: "You could build a circus on top of Ground Zero, but you can't change history," says John Feal, a building supervisor who was injured in the aftermath of 9/11, as quoted in Yahoo! News. It will always be Ground Zero. "You can't change what happened" there.
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