Visitor Rules and Regulations
9/11 MEMORIAL & MUSEUM VISITOR RULES & REGULATIONS
1. Summary of Authority
The National September 11 Memorial and Museum at the World Trade Center Foundation, Inc. and the National September 11 Memorial and Museum at the World Trade Center have adopted and will enforce those rules and regulations that may be necessary and appropriate for them to carry out their duties and responsibilities under their Certificate of Incorporation, provisional charter, and by-laws.
The National September 11 Memorial and Museum at the World Trade Center Foundation, Inc. and National September 11 Memorial and Museum at the World Trade Center may amend, modify, or withdraw any of their rules and regulations at any time if the organizations deem it in its best interest to do so. As private institutions, the National September 11 Memorial and Museum at the World Trade Center Foundation, Inc. and National September 11 Memorial and Museum at the World Trade Center may exercise the foregoing rights at any time without notice and without liability.
The following terms are defined as they pertain to the 9/11 Memorial & Museum Visitor Rules & Regulations.
“9/11 Memorial & Museum” refers to the National September 11 Memorial and Museum at the World Trade Center Foundation, Inc., a New York not-for-profit corporation, and the National September 11 Memorial and Museum at the World Trade Center, a New York Education Corporation, which are responsible for the design, construction, and operations of the Memorial and Memorial Museum.
“9/11 Memorial & Museum Property” refers to all of the 9/11 Memorial & Museum’s facilities including the Memorial, Memorial Museum, any remote leased storage facilities, and any structures and objects contained therein.
“9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff” means any employee, volunteer, contractor or agent of the 9/11 Memorial & Museum, who works to carry out daily operations or duties for the advancement of the 9/11 Memorial & Museum’s mission. Any 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff specifically designated to carry out security operations on behalf of the 9/11 Memorial & Museum are herein referred to “9/11 Memorial & Museum Security Staff.”
“Exhibition Spaces” is defined as the below-grade areas inside the Memorial Museum that display exhibitions and Museum collection content, including the Concourse Lobby, the Introductory Exhibit & Ramp, Memorial Hall, In Memoriam (the memorial exhibition), September 11, 2001 (the historical exhibition), the Center Passage, Foundation Hall (aka the West Chamber), all interstitial spaces at bedrock level, and any rotating displays of collection objects on the 2nd floor of the Museum Pavilion (at the east end of the Atrium Terrace, outside the auditorium).
“Memorial” or “Memorial Plaza” encompasses the at-grade bounded area inside the perimeter of public sidewalks south of Fulton St., north of Liberty St., west of Greenwich St., and east of West St. in New York, N.Y., which includes the Memorial Pools and Names Parapets.
“Memorial Museum” means the Museum Pavilion and the sub-grade facilities beneath the Memorial Plaza that include the Exhibition Spaces, Education Center, and back-of-house spaces.
“Memorial Pools” means the waterfall mechanisms located in the footprints of the original World Trade Center Tower 1 (North Tower) and World Trade Center Tower 2 (South Tower).
“Museum Pavilion” means the above-grade structure located at 180 Greenwich St., between Vesey and Liberty Streets in New York, N.Y.
“Names Parapets” refers to the bronze parapet panels which surround the Memorial Pools that contain the names of all those who died as a result of the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 and February 26, 1993.
3. General Provisions
The following rules and regulations are deemed necessary to ensure the orderly and safe operation of 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property.
I. Access to the Memorial Plaza
Access to the public facilities and visitor areas on the Memorial Plaza is free of charge and open to all persons during visitor hours, which are posted publically, and are subject to change.
Access to administrative facilities or restricted areas is limited to 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff and authorized persons only. The 9/11 Memorial & Museum reserves the right to limit access to any of its public facilities and visitor areas, as it deems fit. In the interest of ensuring that as many visitors as possible have an opportunity to access Memorial and public areas, the 9/11 Memorial & Museum reserves the right to limit, on an as-needed basis, the length of time visitors can spend on its property. The 9/11 Memorial & Museum reserves the right to close any or all of its public facilities due to severe weather or other causes, as needed, and without advanced notice.
II. Admission to the Memorial Museum
Public access inside the Memorial Museum for any persons other than 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff is permissible only upon presentation of a valid ticket, which must be paid in full before entering the Memorial Museum. Entry is only permissible via the main visitor entrance on the north side of the Museum Pavilion.
Valid Memorial Museum tickets must clearly state the date and time of the reservation and have a valid bar code that has never been previously scanned (redeemed). A ticket is considered invalid if the date and/or time on the ticket is more than 30 minutes after the visitor attempts to enter or the ticket has been reproduced or duplicated; or the ticket has previously been redeemed.
The 9/11 Memorial & Museum may restrict access to, or close, any of its property and cancel ticket reservations without advance notice, reason, cause, or explanation at any time.
The 9/11 Memorial & Museum assumes no responsibility for incidental costs associated with visits to Memorial and Museum Property, which may include, but are not limited to, transportation, parking, or lodging costs, even if ticket reservations are cancelled or revoked.
III. Public Notice
The 9/11 Memorial & Museum will endeavor, if practicable, to provide advance notice on its website and other public places in the event of interruptions to normal operating hours and admissions to 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property, including, but not limited to, special events or weather-related events that affect the Memorial Museum ticketing system.
The 9/11 Memorial & Museum will endeavor to honor all ticket reservations in good faith. Tickets may be revoked at any time at the sole discretion of the 9/11 Memorial & Museum. Ticket prices and plans are subject to change, without notice, at the sole discretion of the 9/11 Memorial & Museum.
Memorial Museum tickets and associated service fees are non-refundable. In the event of an unforeseen Memorial Museum closure, however, visitors with tickets for affected dates and/or times can reschedule for the next available time slot at no additional cost. Priority will be given to these visitors or they will be eligible for a full refund.
Trespassing, entering, or remaining in or upon 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property not open to the public, except with the express consent of 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff, is prohibited. Any access onto or within any adjacent area under construction or closed to the general public is also prohibited.
VI. Security Screening
Security screening is mandatory for all visitors that wish to enter the Memorial Museum, and will include screening of all bags, equipment, and belongings. Permissible baggage, handbags, backpacks, shopping bags, equipment, and belongings for visitors is limited to 8” x 17” x 19” per item.
VII. Mandatory Baggage Storage & Storage Services
All Memorial Museum visitors must store large bags, backpacks, large umbrellas and any other objects deemed by 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff to be too large or a danger to the exhibits and artifacts. The Memorial Museum will provide storage for visitors’ belongings in the Coat Rooms for the duration of their visit, located on the Concourse Lobby level and the Pavilion Auditorium level (2nd floor).
At the discretion of 9/11 Memorial & Museum Security Staff, the 9/11 Memorial & Museum may not admit, nor provide storage for, visitors’ large personal items or belongings. Pursuant to Section VI (“Security Screening”), large items may not be admitted, nor stored in the Coat Rooms.
Unattended bags or belongings found anywhere on 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property will be subject to search and removal by 9/11 Memorial & Museum Security Staff. The 9/11 Memorial is not responsible for unattended bags or belongings.
VIII. Public Restroom Access
Access to public restrooms inside the Memorial Museum is intended for ticketed Memorial Museum patrons only.
Restroom access for non-Memorial Museum ticket holders in extenuating situations may be granted at the sole discretion of 9/11 Memorial & Museum Security Staff. In such cases, the guest must enter through the Memorial Museum public entrance on the north side of the Museum Pavilion, pass through security screening, and be escorted at all times to/from the restroom area by 9/11 Memorial & Museum Security Staff.
IX. Re-Entry Into the Memorial Museum
After entering the Memorial Museum and exiting the Museum Pavilion via the main public exit on the south side of the Museum Pavilion, Memorial Museum ticket holders cannot reenter the Memorial Museum for any reason (including to visit the Exhibition Spaces again, or to use the Memorial Museum’s public restrooms).
In the case of an emergency, re-entry into the Memorial Museum may be granted at the sole discretion of 9/11 Memorial & Museum security management. If a ticket holder is permitted re-entry, the guest must reenter through the main Memorial Museum public entrance on the north side of the Museum Pavilion, pass through security screening again, and be escorted at all times by 9/11 Memorial & Museum Security Staff.
All groups of 20 individuals or more are required to designate their own “group leader” who is responsible for making ticket reservations/purchases, following proper Memorial and Memorial Museum group check-in procedures (explained by Memorial & Museum Staff at the time of booking a reservation, and outlined on the 9/11 Memorial & Museum’s website at www.911memorial.org/groups), maintaining control over the behavior of group members while on 9/11 Memorial & Museum property, and acting as the primary liaison between group members and 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff for the duration of the group’s visit.
XI. Guided Memorial Museum Tours
Interpretative information inside the Memorial Museum will be provided by 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff only, unless otherwise sanctioned by the 9/11 Memorial & Museum. Guided tours within the Memorial Museum conducted by any person, organization, or entity other than a 9/11 Memorial & Museum-sponsored entity are not permitted. While tour operators or other group leaders, including school officials, may reserve tickets for a group’s visit to the Memorial Museum, the tour operator is prohibited from providing his/her own interpretive/narrative/guided tour information while inside the Memorial Museum.
XII. Conformity with Official Signage
While on 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property, all visitors shall comply with all posted signs.
XIII. Interfering with 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff Functions
Violating the order of, or preventing the execution of duties by 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff, to maintain order and control public access and movement is prohibited.
Threatening, resisting, intimidating, or intentionally interfering with 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff engaged in an official duty, or on account of the performance of an official duty, is prohibited.
Pursuant to Section V Trespassing, failure to obey an order to leave 9/11 Memorial & Museum Memorial Property, or reenter 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property after being ordered to leave or not reenter, is also prohibited.
XIV. Report of Injury or Damage
All persons suffering bodily injury on 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property, or having knowledge of damage to 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property, are required to report the occurrence(s) to 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff immediately following the incident. Pursuant to Section XIII Interfering with 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff Functions, providing a false report to 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff is prohibited.
XV. Prohibited Behavior & Disorderly Conduct
The Memorial and Memorial Museum are places of solemn reflection dedicated to honoring and remembering the tragic events and the overwhelming loss of innocent life that occurred at this location and others on September 11, 2001 and February 26, 1993. Given the unique nature of the site and the tragedy that occurred here, proper decorum, personal behavior, and conduct is required from all visitors at all times in order to provide the entire visiting public with respect, and an equal opportunity to have an enriching and meaningful experience.
Dismissal from 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property is warranted upon 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff’s determination that a visitor has engaged in disorderly or prohibited conduct. Disorderly conduct may include, but is not limited to, any of the following prohibited acts by visitors occurring anywhere on 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property:
a. Engaging in sporting and recreational activities
b. Making noise that is unreasonable, or behaving in a way that is inappropriate given the solemn nature of the Memorial and the Memorial Museum
c. Engaging in fighting, violent, or threatening behavior
d. Engaging in commercial activities, soliciting, and/or vending
e. Loitering or sleeping
g. Obstructing the use of public areas such as entrances, foyers, lobbies, corridors, concourses, offices, elevators, escalators, stairways, roadways, driveways, or walkways
h. Throwing or dropping any items from or at buildings or persons, or from or at any of the Memorial Museum overlook levels
i. Interfering with, or obstructing authorized vehicular traffic
j. Impeding or threatening the security of persons or property
k. Willfully defacing, destroying, or damaging 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property
l. Eating, chewing gum, or drinking inside the Memorial Museum, except in the café area (2nd floor inside the Museum Pavilion), or in designated areas during 9/11 Memorial & Museum-sponsored events
o. Using lighters, matches, and candles
p. Tampering with, damaging, and/or removing landscaping, and/or climbing trees
q. Leafletting or handbilling
r. Demonstrating or rallying
s. Engaging in expressive activity that has the effect, intent or propensity to draw a crowd of on-lookers, except the 9/11 Memorial will allow visitors:
i. With a valid Memorial permit (information available here) to perform musical works on the Memorial Plaza for a 20 minute period on one designated day each month in the spring, summer and fall provided that there is no sound amplification and groups are smaller than 50 people (Note: a $35 non-refundable permit application fee will be charged)
ii. With a valid Memorial permit (information available here) who are active members of the United States Armed Forces to conduct commissioning (enlistment) and re-enlistment ceremonies on the Memorial Plaza; and
iii. With a valid Memorial permit (information available here) who are active members of the United States Armed Forces, veterans and first responders to hold official ceremonies on the Plaza provided that the group is limited to 50 people.
XVI. Prohibited Items
Visitors are prohibited from bringing the following items onto 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property:
a. Any item deemed inappropriate by 9/11 Memorial Staff
b. Marking instruments including spray paint, liquid paint, markers, glass cutters and/or other implements that could be used to mark, dye/color, scratch, gouge or otherwise deface property by mechanical or chemical means
c. Hazardous materials of any kind
d. Weapons and tools including firearms, knives, cutting tools, realistic replicas of firearms, disabling chemicals like mace, pepper spray, tear gas, chlorine, liquid bleach or compressed gasses or other potentially dangerous instruments; armaments or devices which can cause bodily harm to visitors, 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff, or others, and/or physical harm to 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property; or any items specifically prohibited to possess as per New York State Penal Code
e. Explosives, including fireworks
f. Noise making or amplification devices, including but not limited to, radios and bull horns
g. Alcoholic beverages
h. Controlled substances
i. Narcotics which use is strictly prohibited by governmental regulation
j. Powdered substances, liquid soaps and bubbles
k. Glass bottles
l. Alkali metals
m. Rope, wire of any kind, or any device used to attach or hang posters onto any structure or tree
XVII. Photography, Videography, and Audio Recordings
9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff reserve the right to refuse access and/or photo, video, or audio recording rights to any visitor or group, at anytime, anywhere on 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property.
Any visitors to 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property, including members of the press/news media, must respect all other visitors, and must also realize that due to the unique somber nature of these locations, not all visitors wish to be photographed, videotaped, recorded or bothered in any other manner.
The following are prohibited on all 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property, unless otherwise authorized by the 9/11 Memorial & Museum’s Communications & Digital Media or External Affairs & Strategy Departments:
a. Taking photographs, videos, and/or audio recordings for advertising or commercial purposes, which includes, but is not limited to, publishing, selling, reproducing, transferring, distributing, or otherwise commercially exploiting the recorded media in any manner whatsoever
b. Using cameras and/or audio recording devices in any security screening area, other restricted areas, or in internal offices
c. Using tripods and/or professional camera and/or audio recording equipment
d. If professional camera and/or audio recording equipment is officially authorized for use on 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property, then it is done so on-site at the discretion of 9/11 Memorial & Museum Security Staff.
Inside the Memorial Museum, personal photos, video, and/or audio recordings are permitted for private, noncommercial use only, with some exceptions, noted below, and in all cases so long as the activity does not impede pedestrian traffic in any way.
a. All camera and/or audio recording equipment, including tripods, are subject to security screening pursuant to Section VI Security Screening and are permissible inside the Memorial Museum at the discretion of 9/11 Memorial & Museum Security Staff.
b. In permitted Memorial Museum areas, personal photography, videography, and audio recording is allowed as long as it does not impede pedestrian traffic or exhibition viewing in any way.
c. The use of a flash is prohibited in all Memorial Museum areas, at all times.
Photography, videography, and audio recording is prohibited in the following Memorial Museum areas:
• Security screening area (ground floor entrance inside the Museum Pavilion)
• September 11, 2001 (the historical exhibition), except whereas otherwise posted
• In Memoriam (the memorial exhibition)
• Auditorium (second floor inside the Museum Pavilion)
• Rebirth at Ground Zero (film presentation)
• South Tower Gallery (interstitial space).
XVIII. Cellular Phone Usage
Cellular phones must be silenced, and not used for placing calls, while visitors are in the Memorial Museum’s Exhibition Spaces. Phone calls can be made from the Concourse Lobby level and from the Museum Pavilion’s auditorium level (2nd floor). If visitors are using a Smartphone with an audio component to provide information, they must use personal headphones, or keep the device silent, while in the Exhibition Spaces.
XIX. Animals & Pets Access
Animals and pets are not allowed on, or inside, 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property, except for service animals.
XX. Flowers, Floral Arrangements & Live Plants Admission
Flowers, floral arrangements, and live plants are permitted on the Memorial Plaza.
XXI. Musical Instruments Admission & Usage
Musical instruments are prohibited inside the Memorial Museum, unless officially authorized by the 9/11 Memorial & Museum’s Communications Department or External Affairs Department. Musical instruments will not be stored at the Memorial Museum’s coat checks.
Visitors may carry musical instruments onto the Memorial Plaza as personal belongings, however they cannot be utilized, unless authorized by permit.
XXII. Wheeled Recreational Devices Admission & Usage
Personal-use recreational wheeled devices, such as rollerblades, bicycles, scooters, and skateboards, are permitted on the Memorial Plaza, however riders/users must dismount or disengage the devices, and cease using the wheeled devices while on the Memorial Plaza.
Personal-use recreational wheeled devices, such as rollerblades, bicycles, scooters, and skateboards, are not permitted inside the Memorial Museum. Such devices will not be stored at the Memorial Museum’s coat checks. Visitors are prohibited from leaving such wheeled devices unattended on the Memorial Plaza, pursuant to Section VIII Mandatory Baggage Storage & Storage Services; Unattended items on the Memorial Plaza will be subject to investigation and removal by 9/11 Memorial & Museum Security Staff.
XXIII. Strollers Admission & Usage
Strollers of all sizes are permitted in public areas on the Memorial Plaza as long as they do not impede pedestrian traffic in any way.
Strollers are permitted in the Exhibition Spaces, however, 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff reserve the right to deny access into the Exhibition Spaces and/or the Memorial Museum if a stroller is too large and poses a danger to exhibits and artifacts. Oversize strollers, including jogging strollers, are prohibited inside the Memorial Museum and cannot be stored at the coat checks.
Sketching with any type of material is permitted on the Memorial Plaza, as long as it does not impede pedestrian traffic in any way.
Sketching, with a pencil only, is permitted inside the Memorial Museum, except for in the Exhibition Spaces, and in so far as the activity does not interfere with other visitors’ experiences nor impede pedestrian traffic throughout the Memorial Museum space in any way.
XXV. Sanitation & Refuse
All visitors on all 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property must dispose of personal refuse and items for recycling in designated receptacles only. Removing objects from trash receptacles is prohibited.
XXVI. Memorial Pools & Names Parapets
Throwing or placing any items, including coins, in the Memorial Pools is prohibited. Using chalk or other harmful markers directly on the Memorial Names Parapets is prohibited.
XXVII. Memorial Museum Artifacts & Exhibitions
Touching any artifact or exhibition item inside the Memorial Museum is prohibited, unless expressly authorized by 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff, or as posted.
XXVIII. Press & Media Access
Members of the news media will bear responsibility for acquiring all necessary releases from filmed or interviewed visitors on 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property. Any apparent loitering or harassment of Memorial, 9/11 Memorial Museum Store at Vesey, or Memorial Museum visitors who do not wish to be interviewed, photographed or filmed will result in dismissal from 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property, at the sole discretion of 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff.
Credentialed members of the news media who wish to report, interview, photograph or record on the Memorial Plaza are encouraged to notify and make arrangements with the 9/11 Memorial & Museum’s Communications & Digital Media Department prior to their arrival. Members of the news media can engage the public no closer than fifteen (15) feet away from the Memorial Pools, the Names Parapets, and any entrance/exit to the Museum Pavilion.
Credentialed members of the news media must receive prior written authorization from, and make advance arrangements with, the 9/11 Memorial & Museum’s Communications & Digital Media Department prior to their arrival. Authorized members of the news media will receive access to the Memorial Museum for a specified period of time for reporting, which may include photography, videography, or audio recording.
XXIX. Publication, Marketing & Advertising Permits
Professionals documenting 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property through any means (photography, videography, audio recording, etc.) must receive written permission in advance from the 9/11 Memorial & Museum’s External Affairs & Strategy Department.
Members of the media, professional photographers, videographers, artists, etc. may use information obtained from the 9/11 Memorial & Museum, both physically and from 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff or its designees, solely for the purposes of reporting information related to the following:
a. Programs presented by the 9/11 Memorial & Museum, 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff, and/or its designees and constituent organizations
b. General information about any activity currently or historically that is taking or has taken place on or near what is now 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property
c. Anything, directly or indirectly, related to the organization or operation of 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property.
XXX. Limitation of Damages
Under no circumstance shall the 9/11 Memorial & Museum, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, or their employees be liable for any damages (actual, direct, indirect, incidental, special, punitive, consequential, or otherwise) that may result from a member of the news media’s use, visit, or their inability to use or visit 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property, including without limitation, use of, or reliance on, information available on 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property or websites, interruptions, errors, defects, mistakes, omissions, deletions of files, delays in operation or transmission, non-delivery of information, disclosure of communications, or any other failure of performance.
XXXI. Willful Violation
Any person who violates any provision of the 9/11 Memorial & Museum Visitor Rules and Regulations is subject to dismissal from 9/11 Memorial & Museum Property. A violator’s re-entry may also be prohibited at the discretion of 9/11 Memorial & Museum Staff. In such cases where warranted, the Port Authority Police Department or the New York City Police Department will be contacted for assistance and criminal charges filed.