Saratoga A more than decade-long journey for a piece of the World Trade Center ended without fanfare Tuesday, July 24, as a memorial sculpture was at long last installed in the Spa City’s High Rock Park.
The work of art entitled Tempered by Memory was wrought from a piece of steel pulled from the rubble following the 9/11 attacks in Manhattan. Now, it sits in the middle of the park between High Rock Spring and the pavilions on High Rock Avenue. The project was sponsored by the Saratoga Arts Council.
Tempered by Steel weighs in at 28,000 pounds and stands at 24 feet. It is believed to be the only work of art crafted from steel once part of the Twin Towers. Other monuments are pieces of steel that have not been manipulated.
“It’s been a while coming but I think everybody is very, very relieved and really happy that this is the site chosen (for the sculpture),” said Saratoga Springs Mayor Scott Johnson.
The sculpture was originally destined for a locating in front of the City Center, but when that was deemed impractical a lengthy debate ensued over its placement.
The Arts Council was approached two years ago about having steel artifacts from Ground Zero brought to Saratoga by officers stationed at the Saratoga Springs Naval Support Unit. Artists John Van Alstine and Noah Savett completed the piece last summer and it resided in Gansevoort until Tuesday morning’s installation. They were assisted by five retired ironworkers and a lot of community support.
Johnson said he was glad that the community stepped up to make the project happen and is happy with where the sculpture now sits.
“It’s very serene and really invites you to contemplate the meaning of what happened that day and the aftermath,” he said. “It’s really an inspiration to how Americans responded … it brings back emotions.”