The National September 11 Memorial and Museum in lower Manhattan is commemorating the 12th anniversary of the World Trade Center attacks with a ceremony Wednesday in the outdoor plaza of the memorial.
The ceremony, which can be watched online, was scheduled to begin at 8:46 a.m. EDT, the time when the first plane struck the north tower in 2001, and last more than three hours. In ceremonies in past years, the names of the victims of the attacks were read aloud by family members.
A separate ceremony is scheduled to take place at the Pentagon on Wednesday, with President Obama expected to speak to families of the victims of American Flight 77. Another observance will take place in southwestern Pennsylvania in remembrance of the victims of United Flight 93.
Although the Sept. 11 museum has yet to open, the memorial portion of the site has been open since 2011. The museum is expected to open its doors to the public in the spring of 2014.
Funding for the museum has been a contested subject in recent years. Federal financing for it has stalled and the memorial foundation has had to raise money for what is expected to be $60 million in annual operating expenses.
On Sunday, CBS' 60 Minutes rebroadcast a segment about the curatorial mission of the museum and the many challenges it faces as it prepares to open.