Thursday, November 17, 2011

500,000+ Visit National 9/11 Memorial, But Issues Remain

Since the National 9/11 Museum opened at the World Trade Center complex on September 12 of this year, visitors had to obtain timed passes to enter into the memorial. More than 500,000 people have accessed the memorial, but 30% of the people who have sought the reserved tickets have not shown up.

The New York Observer considers the initial numbers for the museum attendance to be underwhelming.
Attendance at the newly opened 9/11 memorial has been underwhelming, to say the least. Despite the millions of dollars that went into the project, over 30% of people who have reserved tickets to visit the site in recent months have failed to show, DNAinfo reports.

It’s not all bad news, though. Despite the AWOL ticket holders, tens of thousands of people are still visiting the site each week.

Even with all the no-shows, the memorial has already attracted more than 500,000 visitors in its first two months, with about 10,000 visitors on a typical day, Connors said.

The nonattendance is good news for downtowners, however, who have already voiced their complains about increased traffic from tourists visiting the memorial.
The absences have been largely been attributed to mis-planning, as visitors have been required to book their visit at a specific time and date weeks in advance. Maybe it’s all those Occupy Wall Street protestors and the police pens encasing them causing problems, though The Observer suspects other issues.
Extending out the numbers for a full year, you're looking at 3 million visitors. That's pretty significant numbers, but perhaps we could use a bit more context. How does this compare to other museums that use timed passes? The United States Holocaust Museum uses a timed system, and some other museums use timed passes for entry into facilities or special collections. Is this in line for memorials and museums?

I'm not sure, but this does suggest that there's room for the museum to allow walk-up ticketing access directly at the memorial entrance rather than the more convoluted process now in place.

No comments: