Paterson on Lower Manhattan
In a short speech to the Downtown-Lower Manhattan Association March 10, Gov. David Paterson said the World Trade Center Memorial will open on time on Sept. 11, 2011.
Some of the memorial plaza is expected to open on that date with the names of those killed, waterfalls at the Twin Tower footprints and some trees on the plaza, although the underground portion of the memorial will take at least an additional year and it remains an open question how accessible the memorial will be in the months following the tenth anniversary ceremonies.
He said there was also good progress being made on One and Four Trade Center, being developed respectively by the Port Authority and developer Larry Silverstein. The financial impasse between the two sides is over how to finance the rest of the construction of Tower 4 and one other dormant Silverstein tower sites.
On other Downtown issues, Paterson also said:
• There will be more money coming Downtown. “We are still aware that there’s more to do,” he said. “Through the [federally-funded] Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, we are bringing resources to the area.”
• Demolition of the former Deutsche Bank building is proceeding steadily, but slowly with one floor being taken down about every two weeks because of the “severe environmental limitations that disable us from completing that demolition earlier.” He did not mention the two firefighters killed in 2007 battling a fire in the 9/11-damaged building.
• He will try within budget constraints “to help those who unfortunately became ill after Sept. 11 when we were misadvised by the Environmental Protection Agency that it was safe to live and work in the area of Downtown New York.”
• He also said he was sticking with his proposal to take $200 million out of the Battery Park City fund to help close the budget deficit. The fund, which the mayor and city comptroller also control, had been set aside in the past for city affordable housing, and has never before been taken by the state.