Just about an hour ago, crews lowered the last piece onto the 124 m spire topping One World Trade Center, making it the tallest building in the hemisphere:
The 18-piece silver spire will top out the tower at a symbolic 1,776 feet (541 m), a nod to the year America signed the Declaration of Independence. The new building is just north of the original towers, now the hallowed ground known as Ground Zero.
"This really is a symbolic moment because this building really represents the resiliency of this country," Port Authority Vice Chair Scott Rechler told [NBC's] Matt Lauer, who earlier had made his way up the 104 floors to witness the process. "These people, the thousand men and women who have worked here tirelessly, really as a tribute for the people that perished on 9-11 right on this site."
This also bumps Chicago to second place. Until this morning, the 442 m Willis Tower was the tallest building in the U.S., and had been for 40 years.