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Greenwich Debates Location for 2nd 9/11 Memorial

GREENWICH, Conn. -- Greenwich officials and park preservation groups are divided on where to place a second, more accessible 9/11 memorial. Grass Island and Greenwich Point have both been suggested and opposed by conservationists.

Designed by R.G. Hull and Associates, the proposed memorial features two 12-foot-tall glass towers etched with a motif of the American flag and the names of the Greenwich victims on the stripes of each tower. Each tower is oriented in a way to be backlit at night by small LED lights. Three lines radiate from the center, one going to the World Trade Center, one to the Pentagon, and two to Pennsylvania.

“I think it’s beautiful,” said Selectman David Theis. “Where we put it is almost secondary in nature.”

Twelve residents and 14 others with ties to Greenwich died in the attacks 10 years ago. The first memorial , located on Great Captain’s Island, was dedicated on the ninth anniversary of the attacks. The Manhattan skyline can be seen from the memorial, but it is inaccessible most of the year.

Initial proposals have suggested the second tribute go on Grass Island, but members of the Friends of Grass Island are opposed.

“It’s one of the most beautiful memorials that I’ve ever seen, and I think we should be proud to have it in Greenwich,” said Sylvester Pecora Sr., co-chairman of the Friends of Grass Island. However, Pecora said Grass Island is not the place for it due to a compromised sea wall, proximity to a sewer line and the possibility of vandalism. “Put it someplace where it benefits the whole community. Don’t put it in a place where it may be vandalized and does not work.”

Theis and Selectman Drew Marzullo favored putting the memorial on Greenwich Point. First Selectman Peter Tesei disagreed, arguing that Greenwich Point, which requires a park or beach pass to enter, is not accessible enough.

“Our initial response … is to keep Greenwich Point in its natural state,” said Amy Burke, president of the Friends of Greenwich Point. “It’s a beautiful memorial, but it’s conflicting with what our intention is at Greenwich point.”

Tesei asked Joseph Siciliano, director of the Parks and Recreation Department, to consider the pros and cons of placing the memorial at Grass Island, Greenwich Point, Roger Sherman Baldwin Park and Bruce Park and report back.

Where do you think the second Sept. 11 memorial should be placed? Comment below or send your opinion to ahelhoski@thedailygreenwich.com .

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