Artifacts of Destruction and the Politics of Preservation at Ground Zero

Wed, Nov 15    7pm

Artifacts of Destruction and the Politics of Preservation at Ground Zero

Driven by tragedy, destruction defined the dynamic of preservation at Ground Zero after the September 11 terrorist attack on the World Trade Center in Lower Manhattan. It defined what was deemed sacred—the footprints of the twin towers. It defined the symbolism of architectural artifacts—remnants of the original World Trade Center. It defined a special class of interests—the families of the 9/11 victims. And it defined the political landscape of decision making over what artifacts would be preserved and how they would be memorialized. In the absence of standing buildings, preservation advocates wanted not just to preserve and safeguard Trade Center artifacts but to make them palpable memory talismans of a rebuilt Trade Center. In her talk, Professor Sagalyn will discuss these political dynamics.

Lynne B. Sagalyn, Earle W. Kazis and Benjamin Schore Professor Emerita of Real Estate at Columbia Business School, is a writer/scholar and real estate professional.

An expert in real estate development and finance, Sagalyn has published extensively and is widely known for her research on urban redevelopment. Her most recent book, Power at Ground Zero: Politics, Money, and the Remaking of Lower Manhattan, has received continuous praise and is regarded as the definitive account of that rebuilding challenge. Her earlier books include Times Square Roulette: Remaking the City Icon Downtown, Inc.: How America Rebuilds Cities (co-author).

Professor Sagalyn serves as a director of several real estate companies and is active in civic organizations in New York City.

She received her Ph.D. from the M.I.T., M.C.R.P. from Rutgers University, and B.S. with distinction from Cornell University. She was also on the faculty of the Department of Urban Studies and Planning at M.I.T. and the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School and School of Design, and has been a guest lecturer at many universities in the U.S. and abroad.