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First section of spire placed atop World Trade Center

10:04 PM, Dec 12, 2012   |    comments
One World Trade Center stands in construction as the first of 18 segment of a spire crowning it was hoisted into place, in New York, December 12, 2012. At 104 -storeys, it is the highest building in New York and when the 408-foot spire is complete it will become the tallest in the western hemisphere, hitting 1,776 feet. AFP PHOTO/Emmanuel DUNAND/ Getty Images
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By Doug Stanglin, USA TODAY

Construction workers atop One World Trade Center Wednesday in New York City hoisted into place the first section of a spire that will extend the building to its full height of 1,776 feet.

It took crews about 45 minutes to lift the 16-foot section, weighing almost 70 tons, into place, The Daily News reported.

The full 408-foot spire, produced at a plant outside Montreal, is in 18 sections and will take three months to put in place.

Nine of the segments were delivered to the Ground Zero site by barge Tuesday from Port Newark, N.J., the Associated Press reported.

The building is already the tallest in New York City and once completed, will become the tallest building in the Western hemisphere and the third tallest in the world.

"This project truly has really redefined construction I think throughout the world on all levels whether it be construction, whether it be design, whether it be logistics," said Steven Plate, who is heading up the construction project, CBS News reported. "Keeping in mind, we're building a city within a city."

The high-rise building, scheduled to be opened in 2014, is one of five new skyscrapers planned at the 16-acre site in Lower Manhattan.

The twin towers of the old World Trade Center collapsed after hijackers flew airplanes into them on Sept. 11, 2001. The new site will include a 9/11 memorial and museum, as well as retail space and an arts center.

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