Update: Land Acquisition Moves Flight 93 National Memorial Closer to Completion Target

Flags at Flight 93 temporary memorial. Photo by Jeff Kubina via Fickr.

The Flight 93 Advisory Commission and Task Force recently announced the acquisition of 57 more acres for the Flight 93 National Memorial in western Pennsylvania, which is still very much a work in progress. The newly acquired land is a vital addition because it surrounds the crash site and provides room for ancillary structures and activities. Present plans call for the construction of a house to serve as the residence for a ranger who will provide site security.

This key land acquisition has moved the National Park Service and the Flight 93 Advisory Commission and Task Force closer to their goal of completing the Memorial in time for the historic flight’s tenth anniversary on September 11, 2011. Much remains to be done, however, and funding issues could still be a serious impediment. Although $30 million of the Memorial’s estimated final cost of $58 million must be raised from private sources, only $13.5 million has been contributed or pledged to date.

An agreement to establish a nonprofit friends group for the Memorial is a related positive development. Conveyed in a letter to the NPS district director, the broadly sketched plans call for an organization that draws members from both the public and private sectors.