Landing gear that could be from one of the planes that hit the World Trade Center towers on September 11, 2001 has been found in lower Manhattan.

Possible landing gear from a 9/11 plane found in lower Manhattan (NYPD)

The gear, measuring 5 foot was found between the rear of 51 Park Place and the rear of the building behind it, 50 Murray Street, in lower Manhattan police tell WABC TV. New York Police Department spokesman Paul Browne said Friday the part includes a clearly visible Boeing identification number.

The twisted metal part has cables and levers on it and is about 3 feet wide and 1.5 feet deep. It includes a clearly visible Boeing Co. identification number, New York Police Department spokesman Paul Browne said Friday.

"The odds of this being wedged between there is amazing," Browne said, adding it was not surprising that it went undiscovered for more than a decade given the location. "It had to have fallen just the right way to make it into that space."

Browne said other World Trade Center wreckage had been discovered nearby, possibly even at the same buildings, in years past.

Surveyors hired by the property owner who were inspecting the rear of 51 Park Place on Wednesday called police on Wednesday morning to report what they thought was damaged machinery behind the building there.

51 Park Place is the site of a proposed mosque and Islamic cultural center according to WNBC.The spot where the landing gear was found is about three blocks from ground zero. When plans for the mosque and community center were first announced several years ago, opponents protested that putting a Muslim facility near ground zero showed disrespect. Supporters cited freedom of religion and said it wasn't too close to where Islamic extremists attacked on Sept. 11, 2001.

The location has been secured as a crime scene. Inspectors will return to the site on Monday to determine if the debris can be removed.

Two hijacked planes slammed into the World Trade Center towers in 2001, killing thousands of people in the towers and on the planes. Of the lives lost that day, 38 were from Middletown and 147 from Monmouth County as part of 700 who died from New Jersey.

Statement From NYPD Deputy Police Commissioner Paul Browne

Possible 9/11 landing gear wedged between two buildings (NYPD)

“The NYPD is securing the location as it would a crime scene, documenting it photographically and restricting access until the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner completes its health and safety evaluation protocol, after which a decision will be made concerning sifting the soil for possible human remains. The aircraft part will not be removed until the process is completed, at which point it will secured by the NYPD Property Clerk.”




The Associated Press contributed to this story