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9/11 memorial Kim Lau Memorial Arch in Chatham Square, photograph by Lia Chang. Museum of Chinese in America (MOCA) Collection.
在位于且林士果广场的金劳纪念碑前的9/11纪念活动,照片由Lia Chang拍摄,美国华人博物馆(MOCA)馆藏

The attacks on the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001 crippled Manhattan’s Chinatown, a neighborhood just blocks away from Ground Zero. Streets in and surrounding the neighborhood were closed to vehicle traffic for weeks after, phone service was out for months, and as not all of Chinatown was in the official “Disaster Zone,” residents and businesses north of Canal Street were prevented from receiving government aid.

Historian Betty Lee Sung, noted in a report commissioned by the Asian Americans for Equality “restricted access to the neighborhood in the aftermath of September 11th destabilized the local economy in fundamental ways: garment factories, restaurants, and small businesses that are primary sources of employment for immigrants with limited language and job skills have gone out of business or suffered significant revenue losses.” Business in Chinatown have rebounded to an extent, but many longtime New Yorkers say the neighborhood has not been the same since 9/11.