Thousands gathered Friday to take in the New York skyline as the observation deck of the new World Trade Center — viewed by many as a symbol of the city’s resilience — opened to the public. The gleaming glass tower, constructed on the site where the Twin Towers stood before being destroyed in the September 11 attacks of 2001, is the tallest building in the Western hemisphere. Following an early morning ribbon cutting, visitors thronged the observatory, which offers spectacular views of the city from the tower’s 100th, 101st and 102nd floors. Operators expect between three and four million visitors a year, who will be able to take in the 360-degree panorama from a dizzying 1,250 feet (380 meters). The World Trade Center, also known as Freedom Tower, welcomed its first tenants last year, but the general public was only allowed its first in-person glimpse following the

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