Construction on the Sept. 11 memorial at ground zero will resume this month after several weeks of delays caused by a redesign to cut its price in half.

Preliminary work on the "Reflecting Absence" memorial began in March and stopped in May after contractors said the cost was approaching $1 billion for the huge reflecting pools that will mark the destroyed World Trade Center towers' footprints.

The memorial and underground Sept. 11 museum were redesigned, this time with a $510 million budget, and the two organizations in charge of the project on Thursday awarded a $17 million contract to begin creating the foundations.

Work by the heavy construction company E.E. Cruz, of Holmdel, N.J., will begin in the next few weeks.

The trade center site's owner, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, last month agreed to take over building the memorial and contribute up to $195 million of the cost. The World Trade Center Memorial Foundation, which will run the memorial, said it would focus on fundraising and the design.