"Visitors to the Memorial enter across a relational threshold-inscribed: Daughter, Neighbor, Citizen, et al. -to approach the entombed, fortified fountain. At its edge, visitors can move the floating, reflective dish, to activate the interplay of national perceptions -inscribed: United We Stand, Sea to Shining Sea, Home of the Brave, et al. -versus core American rights and ideals -inscribed: Privacy, Habeas Corpus, Assembly, et al. -suggesting the national dialogue triggered by the attacks. "Inscribed on the floating mirrored dish, reflected upward at night, are the personal traits of the victims -inscribed: Beloved, Equal, Strong, Honest, et al. -evidence of our diverse American citizenry and the characteristics that form our national identity. As projections at night, this constellation symbolizes the residual afterlife of the victims. 3,000 glass plaques surround a fountain in the center, and etched in the plaques are the names and home towns of those who died that day"
Fiberglass with mirror polished stainless steel cladding is used as the face of the floating reflective dish, with the 09/11/01 marker made of aluminum. Powder-coated aluminum cladding is used to enclose the perimeter of the fountain. The area surrounding the fountain is sandblasted concrete with infilled epoxy aggregate flight trajectories, with etched aluminum representing the four flights on that day. During the evening, the artwork is lit by overhead lighting.