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Tempered by Memory
High Rock Park, 9-11 Memorial

by C. Michael Ingersoll, Principal, The LA Group

Tempered by Memory

Located in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., this memorial park, designed and donated by The LA Group, showcases a sculpture formed from beams taken from the rubble of the Twin Towers. The sculpture, and the surrounding park, designed by The LA Group, serve the community by offering a calming, beautiful place to remember lost loved ones and come together as a community.
Photo credit: The LA Group

The Saratoga Springs, NY 9-11 Memorial is located in the historic High Rock Park, which is adjacent to the first natural spring that Native Americans found at the base of the rock escapement in this area (High Rock Spring). This location was chosen as the backdrop for a fitting connection to the history of the area along with the many emotional ties to the events of September 11, 2001.
Many residents of Saratoga Springs lost loved ones and were impacted by this tragic national event. The LA Group, a landscape architecture and engineering firm, therefore decided to design a park for the community to honor this loss. All services were provided on a pro bono basis.

The idea for a commemorative sculpture was put forward by the Saratoga Springs Arts Council. The creation of a sculpture utilizing actual steel pieces from the World Trade Center was awarded to local artists Noah Savette and John Van Alstine. The sculpture was appropriately named Tempered by Memory.

The City of Saratoga Springs Department of Public Works and a committee of local residents sought out and evaluated many locations within the City. The most fitting setting was chosen next to the site that first attracted Native Americans and the cities early visitors to the area for the taking of the natural spring waters.

Tempered by Memory

The sculpture, titled Tempered by Memory, inspires and grants peace to many visitors to the park, whether they have personal associations with the events of 9/11 or not.
Photos credit: The LA Group

Along with the donated efforts by many, The LA Group worked closely with the local architecture firm Frost/Hurf Architects, and the committee to site the sculpture in a manner that it becomes an extension of the natural granite escapement. This was accomplished by creating planting walls and steps of granite slabs that were taken from a local quarry and placed in and around the sculpture to create a natural setting.

Today, with the City Public Works Department and through the coordination of volunteers by local resident and sports personality Dottie Pepper, annual maintenance and seasonal plantings are installed so that this memory and location are preserved. Many choose to partake in the annual ceremonies that take place at the park or visit in a more private manner for personal reflection.

As seen in LASN magazine, February 2019.

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November 12, 2019, 4:42 pm PDT

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