September 8th - September 14th, 2007
Remembering 9/11, A New Exhibit Opens at the New-York Historical Society
September 7th: A new exhibition opened this week at the New-York Historical Society featuring a collection of artifacts taken from Ground Zero. Landing gear from United Airlines Flight 175, the crumpled hood of a NYPD car, structural beams from the towers, and the doors of a destroyed FDNY fire truck are among the many remnants that appear in the "Here is New York: Remembering 9/11/01" exhibit, Metro New York reported.
In addition to some of the larger pieces of wreckage in the show are 1,300 digital photographs and video interviews with survivors, according to the Metro's report. The exhibit is open now and will continue through January 1, 2008.
Speaker Pelosi Supports New Fund for Sick Ground Zero Workers
September 11th: Standing at the World Trade Center site alongside Governor Eliot Spitzer, House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she backs legislation to reopen the September 11th Victims Compensation Fund, reported the New York Sun.
After paying out more than $6 billion to the families of 9/11 victims, the fund was closed back in 2003. Although Pelosi said she backs such legislation, she also said that she has not committed to any of the current proposals that are on the table, according the Sun's report. If reopened, the fund could begin allocating money for those who have contracted illnesses that stem from exposure to toxins in the air around Ground Zero.
The Sun's report also noted that members of New York's congressional delegation will try to collaborate in order to draft a new bill that would open the fund and expand care to Lower Manhattan residents, school children, and anyone else affected by the air quality downtown after the attacks.
Lower Manhattan Is Booming
September 11th: "No where in the five boroughs…is there a place where energy and optimism so tangibly fill the air," the way it does in Lower Manhattan, said a reporter for the New York Post this week. The reporter contends that too many New Yorkers "never go [downtown]" because they believe it's a "war zone" or a "ghost town after 5 p.m. and on the weekends." Not true, he says, and if they took the time to travel downtown below Canal Street they would see this idea of Lower Manhattan is far from the reality.
Despite the ongoing construction, which some feared might keep people away, the population south of Chambers Street has actually doubled since 2001, according the Post. In fact, the rate of growth downtown, tagged the "residential revolution" by the Post, is greater than in any other part of the city. The Post argues that, rather than feeling burdened by the construction, many seem "energized" by the prospects ahead.
Many new residents are flooding into downtown, which is partly responsible for the growing diversity in Lower Manhattan. Additionally, broadcasters, healthcare companies, magazine publishers, law firms, and others are all bringing their businesses downtown, the Post reports. The result is billions of dollars in capital investment downtown, which is fueling the rapidly altering streetscape.
130 Liberty Fire Safety Work, Environmental Sealing to Proceed Simultaneously
September 13th: City, state, and federal officials reached an agreement Wednesday that will allow fire safety improvements and environmental sealing to be completed simultaneously at the former Deutsche Bank Building at 130 Liberty Street, Newsday reported.
Decontamination and demolition of the building was halted after a fire broke out on August 18th. Since then, the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation had begun to clear debris and make other repairs that officials said were necessary to protect first responders in the event of an emergency, but the Environmental Protection Agency protested, saying that no work should be done until the building has been resealed to prevent toxins from escaping into the air.
According to the Newsday report, tests have shown the air quality around the building to be safe, and the EPA has agreed that fire safety improvements can proceed at the same time as environmental sealing. It is unclear when decontamination and deconstruction work will resume.