Now that 1 World Trade has its spire, the city's gearing up for the building's opening next year, and it looks like security around it is going to be tight; the NYPD just unveiled its security plan for the area surrounding the World Trade Center, and they're creating an intense, fortress-like barrier to keep cars at bay.

The NYPD's proposal, which would cost about $40 million to implement, calls for a 16-acre security perimeter that would include guard booths, checkpoints, vehicle barricades and other barriers that would stand between the World Trade Center and the general public. And unsurprisingly, building an ostensible NYPD moat around the WTC has stirred up some controversy. Pedestrians and cyclists will still be able to access the area easily, but cars will be cut off from Greenwich and Fulton Streets. Area residents had hoped those thoroughfares, which had been cut off by the Twin Towers, would stay open, symbolically and physically connecting the World Trade Center to the rest of the city.

"Greenwich Street is not only symbolically important,” Amanda Burden, the chairwoman of the city’s Planning Commission, told CityRoom back in April 2002. “It’s about beginning to interconnect the totally disconnected elements of Lower Manhattan.”

But if the NYPD's barricade plans are implemented, the WTC will be more isolated from the city than ever. “It’s going to be better for pedestrians and it’s going to be worse for vehicles. That’s a good thing,” Jeff Zupan of the Regional Plan Association told the Post. “The bad thing is that you have these checkpoints that make it look more like an armed camp or a gated community.” In addition to closing Greenwich and Fulton Streets, Vesey and Liberty Streets would also be closed to through traffic at both ends of the site, and vehicles and tour buses will have to be screened for car bombs at a "sally port", a secure, controlled entryway often seen outside prisons, before going near the buildings.

Then again, considering the World Trade Center has been attacked twice in its history, it's not so surprising the NYPD's taking such serious security measures to keep it safe. "If you accept the fact that vehicles have to be checked, that’s unavoidable," Zupan told the Times. "I’m not quite sure how to overcome that. It might be the byproduct of the fact that the World Trade Center was a place where 3,000 people died."