As construction workers cheered, the final two pieces of a 408-foot spire were hoisted high above their heads Thursday to the top of One World Trade Center.
Draped with the American flag, the silver spire settled on a temporary platform. Final installation of the pieces will happen later.
"(It's a) beacon that'll be seen for miles around and give a tremendous indication to people around the entire region, and the world, that we're back and we're better than ever," said Steven Plate, director of construction, CNN affiliate WABC reported.
Once the building is complete, it will stand at a height of 1,776 feet -- an allusion to the year of the birth of the nation.
Already the tallest in New York City, One World Trade Center will be the highest building in the Western Hemisphere.
Delivery of the final two sections was delayed by wind and rain, said Anthony Hayes, assistant director of media for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. The crowning pieces were supposed to have been delivered last Monday morning.
Thursday is the second anniversary of the death of Osama bin Laden, the mastermind behind the September 11, 2001, attacks that toppled the original World Trade Center towers.
The spire will contain 18 separate sections of steel and three communication rings. The first -- and heaviest -- steel section was installed in January, weighing more than 67 tons, according to a statement from the Port Authority.
It will serve as an antenna for a television broadcast facility housed in the building.
"This is like the icing on the cake for New York," construction worker Dennis Muia said, WABC reported.