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Mark Lennihan, Associated Press
Cranes work adjacent to the spire on top of One World Trade Center, Wednesday, May 1, 2013 in New York. The last piece of spire will be hoisted to the roof on Thursday, weather permitting, according to a spokesperson for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

NEW YORK — A crane has hoisted a U.S. flag covered spire to the top of New York's One World Trade Center, under construction at the site of the Sept. 11 attacks.

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Construction workers applauded as the upright spire began heading skyward at midday Thursday on its way to the roof.

The spire's temporary home will be a platform at the top of the trade center. When it's fully installed, at a later date, it will soar to a symbolic 1,776 feet.

The 408-foot spire will be used as a world-class broadcast antenna.

The new tower is at the northwest corner of the trade center site. The area is well on its way to reconstruction with the 72-story Four World Trade Center and other buildings.