June 16th - June 20th, 2008
Construction Audit Underway
June 16 – Last week, Governor Paterson ordered newly appointed Port Authority Executive Director Christopher Ward to audit the construction work at the WTC site and report his findings by the end of June. Several published reports predict the Governor will have little option but to reset the construction schedule again-the last major revamp was 2 years ago. Paterson may be making difficult choices about which projects the state focuses its time and money on. Experts say some of the initial project deadlines were overly ambitious and failed to take into consideration the numerous challenges on the site.
Residents Still Recovering
June 16 – A study by the City Health Department found one out of eight Lower Manhattan residents still suffered post 9/11 stress three years after the attacks. The study found residents living within a mile of the WTC site experienced post-traumatic stress at about the same rate as rescue and recovery workers.
WTC Site Utilize Green Power
June 16 – ‘Green power’ will be used at the WTC site. Hydrogen fuel cells will generate some of the power for the Freedom Tower and several other buildings at the WTC site according to a report in Newsday. 12 fuel cells, totaling 4.8 megawatts, will be installed –the equivalent of power used by 4,800 homes. Governor David Paterson said, “I can think of few sites in the country where the symbolism of this is more important.”
PA Explores Selling Freedom Tower
June 17 – The Port Authority may be trying to sell the Freedom Tower to avoid the difficult task of leasing space in the building. According to The New York Post, several developers have been approached by the agency. The Port Authority apparently wants to form a ‘partnership’ which would privatize the tower under a long-term lease.
DOB Increases Requirements
June 17- The City’s Department of Buildings is now requiring contractors to submit detailed plans for worker safety harness systems at high rise construction sites. The new regulations come after the death of window installer Kevin Kelly who fell nine floors to his death in April after his safety strap failed. Contractors will have to obtain engineer-approved drawings of safety harness systems and site superintendents will have to sign off on inspections of the harnesses.
Omnicom Increases Lease
June 18 – Two big leases have been signed. Omnicom agreed to another 80,000 feet at 200 Varick Street, according to The New York Post. Omnicom already occupies 100,000 feet in the building. HQ Global Workplace signed a 22,370 foot lease at 100 Church street.
March and Rally on Saturday
June 18 – Joe Graffagnino Sr, the father of one of the firefighters who died in a fire at the Deutsche Bank building last August is leading a march and rally this Saturday at 10 am. It will start at 130 Liberty Street and go to City Hall. Graffagnino wants the city to enact stronger fire safety codes; he told 1010 WINS that current safety codes are being ignored by government agencies and contractors.
June 19 – Almost seven years after 9-11, the city medical examiner has identified another victim. Using new DNA testing technology, the remains of a 51 year man were identified; his name is being withheld pending approval from his family. More than 1,100 of the 2,750 victims have not been identified.