NEW YORK -- Nearly six months after the coronavirus forced its closure, the 9/11 Memorial Museum will be reopening on the anniversary of the terrorist attacks next month, first to those who lost loved ones and then to the general public, museum officials announced Thursday.
The memorial plaza had been open to the public with social distancing restrictions since early July, but the museum remained closed, as did other cultural institutions. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said last week that museums would be allowed to reopen with restrictions starting later this month.
“We are extremely pleased to announce the reopening of the 9/11 Memorial Museum, a physical testament to the triumph of hope and our potential for resilience in the face of adversity and unfathomable loss,” said Alice Greenwald, the 9/11 museum's president and CEO.
Meanwhile, the National Park Service announced Thursday that the museums on Liberty and Ellis islands will reopen Monday at 25% of their normal crowd capacity, though the Statue of Liberty's interior and some parts of the museums will remain closed.
At the 9/11 museum, the anniversary day reopening will be reserved for families of those killed in the 2001 attack and the 1993 World Trade Center attack. The public will be able to visit starting Sept. 12.
Pandemic restrictions will be in effect, such as a limit of 25% of capacity, and a requirement to wear masks. The museum had always mandated visitors to get timed entry tickets in advance, which will continue now.
The museum said other measures had been implemented, such as Plexiglas dividers and hand-sanitizing stations, as well as temperature screenings for all, and a one-direction path through the facility.
Hours at the museum are being restricted to five days a week, from the seven days it had been opened before its shutdown in mid-March. The museum will now be closed on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Some exhibition spaces will remain closed to the public, and some services like coat check will not be available.