July 14th - July 20th, 2006
New York Waterway to Pay Government in Fraud Settlement
Monday, July 17th: Port Imperial Ferry Corp., which does business as New York Waterway, will pay $1.2 million to settle a civil dispute filed by the U.S. Attorney's Office, the New York Times reported. New York Waterway could still face a criminal case or administration charges, the paper continued. The civil suit charged New York Waterway with over-billing the government millions of dollars to provide commuter services after September 11th, the Times reported.
According to the Times, after September 11th, the Port Authority hired New York Waterway to expand ferry service between New Jersey and Lower Manhattan to compensate for the destroyed PATH rail link. According to the lawsuit, New York Waterway overcharged the city for boats and crew, inflated its costs, and submitted false bills, the Times reported. The ferry company admits to no wrongdoing and calls the matter a billing dispute, the Times added.
WTC Facade in Pieces at Hanger
Wednesday, July 19th: Officials are not certain how much of the iconic nine floor facade of the World Trade Center's north tower they have in an airport hanger, but they believe that 40 percent of it remains in marked pieces, the Associated Press reported. In an attempt to determine just how much of the steel latticework it has, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey recently hired a structural engineering firm to examine the steel, the AP continued. "We're trying to just find out what we have," Monica Svojsik, a senior associate at Leslie Robertson, the structural engineer for the trade center when it was built, told the AP.
Victims' family members would like to return some of the steel columns to Ground Zero to become part of the memorial, the AP continued. In 2001, the Port Authority hired architects to find historically significant pieces of steel and tag them for removal to the hanger, the AP reported. Steel not designated as historically significant was carted away to scrap yards, the AP added.
Finding a Space for Parking in Chinatown
Wednesday, July 19th: Though the neighborhood is accessible by 17 subway lines, vehicular traffic on Chinatown's busy, narrow streets is as thick as ever, spilling over into adjacent communities and perpetually filling parking spaces on streets and in lots. That's why the New York Metropolitan Transportation Council (NYMTC) is exploring potential Chinatown traffic and parking improvements that could ease congestion and aid pedestrian flow for several decades to come -- all while stimulating business and accommodating residents. For more on this story, click here.