05/10/2013 08:47 am ET Updated May 11, 2013

Matt Lauer's One World Trade Center Exclusive (VIDEO)

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Matt Lauer stood about 1500 feet in the air on Friday as workers lifted the final part of the 408-foot tall spire on top of One World Trade Center.

The "Today" show led its 7:00 a.m. hour with Lauer speaking over spectacular images of the building and views of New York City. One World Trade Center stands just north of the original towers.

"A crowning achievement, we're live at the top of One World Trade Center. Six years in the making and workers are about to raise the final two sections of the spire, making it the tallest building in the western hemisphere. A historic moment today, Friday, May 10, 2013," Lauer said.

When Lauer arrived to the site early Friday morning, he took the express elevator up, but then climbed nine different ladders to reach the top. "It really is an incredible journey; it's harrowing at times. I'm not afraid of heights, but I found my knees knocking at certain times," Lauer said.

Half past the hour, Lauer gave the signal for workers to lift the final piece of the spire. The building grew to a height of 1,776 feet, a symbolic reference to the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

Watch Lauer introduce the "Today" show in the video above and give the final signal to lift the spire in the clip below.



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One World Trade Center Spire
View From Atop One World Trade Center Observatory