March 12th - March 16th, 2012
Many Object to WTC Security Plan Unveiled
March 13 -- Cabs, delivery trucks and residents' cars heading toward the World Trade Center site will soon have to run a gauntlet of new security checkpoints, raising concerns about how small businesses will get deliveries and how residents will get home, reported DNA.info. The NYPD's new security plan for the World Trade Center will place stringent vehicle checkpoints and barricaded secure zones on all four sides of the complex, locking down several neighboring blocks lined with residential buildings and businesses beginning as soon as next year, police revealed.
Residents were in an uproar after learning of the NYPD's preliminary plans — unveiled at a Community Board 1 meeting Monday night — that will not only close off all the streets running through the World Trade Center site but will also close portions of Liberty Street, Vesey Street, Church Street, Washington Street, Greenwich Street and West Broadway. Vehicles looking to access the restricted areas will have to detour through one of four checkpoints and will have to submit to a security screening before being allowed inside, police said.
Lt. David Kelly, who works in the NYPD's counterterrorism bureau, told Community Board 1 that the security measures are necessary to protect the new World Trade Center towers from a truck bomb. The city hopes to begin implementing the security measures at the end of 2013, as 1 World Trade Center and 4 World Trade Center are finished, but the final plan would not be put into place until 2019, when most of the site's projects are completed.
Cranes to Lighten Load After WTC Accident
March 13 – DNA.info reports, the city is ordering contractors to lighten the weight carried by cranes across the five boroughs in the wake of a frightening accident at the World Trade Center last month.
Until investigators figure out why the TG-1900 tower crane at 4 World Trade Center suddenly dropped a massive load of steel beams from 40 stories high on Feb. 16, the Department of Buildings is asking all contractors with similar cranes to use only up to 75 percent of their capacity, Tishman Construction Corp. revealed Monday.
The enormous cranes, used to build skyscrapers, normally have a capacity of up to 150 tons, according to one company that rents them.
East River Crane Scrapes Below Brooklyn Bridge
March 13—A crane pulled by an East River tugboat slammed into scaffolding beneath the Brooklyn Bridge on Tuesday night, reported the New York Daily News. Twenty feet of canvas and sheet metal was damaged as the crane aboard the Thomas Dann hit the underside of the bridge at midspan just after 8 p.m., authorities said. The canvas swaddling the bridge has been in place for about two years as part of an ongoing paint project, said Department of Transportation spokesman Seth Solomonow. “The top of the crane scraped a containment unit under the bridge,” he said. Although there doesn’t appear to be any structural damage, Solomonow said, the bridge will be carefully inspected.
NYPD Spends $17M in Overtime
March 15 -- The city has spent $17 million in overtime policing Occupy Wall Street, NYPD Commissioner Raymond Kelly said Thursday, reported DNA.info.Testifying in front of the City Council during its annual budget hearing, Kelly said the department expects to spend a total of $585 million in police overtime this fiscal year — $17 million of which he attributed to policing the protests and encampment at Zuccotti Park. The tally is significantly higher than it was at the end of November, when the NYPD had reportedly spent $8 million on protest-related overtime.
NYC Anne Frank Center Opens
March 16 -- The Anne Frank Center has moved to a new lower Manhattan location near the World Trade Center site, reported Associated Press. The first phase of the new 2,700-square-foot space opened to the public on Thursday. It's dedicated to raising awareness of intolerance and feature, interactive exhibits, photographs and excerpts from her diary retell the story of the 13-year-old girl who went into hiding in Nazi-occupied Amsterdam in 1942.
British PM Cameron visits 9/11 memorial in NYC
March 15 - Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg joined Cameron and his wife, Samantha, at the memorial to victims of the Sept. 11 terror attacks. The Camerons touched the bronze plaques inscribed with victims' names and gazed into the pools of water where the twin towers stood. They also were joined by Charles Wolf, whose Welsh-born wife Katherine died at the trade center. At least 67 citizens of the United Kingdom died there on Sept. 11, 2001.
Samantha Cameron, who was in New York on business on the day of the Sept. 11 attacks, said the memories "will stay with me forever."
Later in the afternoon, the prime minister took questions from students and faculty at New York University on topics ranging from the Syrian conflict to Scottish independence.