First Steel For Signature WTC Skyscraper Goes In To Ground Zero

New York (AP) -- The first 25-ton steel column for the new Freedom Tower has been installed at Ground Zero.

The installation is another milestone in the prolonged efforts to build a new office tower to replace the World Trade Center.

The 31-foot high white steel column, painted with an American flag and the words "Freedom Tower," was picked up by a crane and set into place on the southern edge of the building this morning.

New York Governor George Pataki said that everyone can be proud as "the Freedom Tower rises from the ashes" of Nine-Eleven.

In the next two weeks, more columns will be set around the perimeter, including two covered with signatures of Nine Eleven families, steelworkers, architects and politicians.

Copyright 2006 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.