September 7th - September 13th, 2013
September 11 Museum Opens to Press Preview
September 6 - Much of the humanity that the 9-11 museum hopes to show to the world when it opens next spring remains unfinished, but stark steel beams and other remnants of the Twin Towers were on display Friday as museum officials conducted a press tour of the unfinished underground site, reported Newsday. The splashy electronics, touch displays, videos, pictures and oral histories that visitors will see are still hidden behind construction barriers or are in the works at the museum portion of the National September 11 Memorial and Museum. All of its large artifacts have been installed, museum officials said. Just across what will be the entrance, on its ground floor, stands two steel columns from the base of the north tower. Outside, hundreds of visitors walked around the memorial, which opened last year and is marked by water cascading down the sides of two pools into the footprint of the two towers that were hit by airliners hijacked by terrorists 12 years ago. One of the most important parts of the museum, both officials said, will be the area with photographs of each of the 2,983 victims and, in an inner room, rotating photos of the victims with images of them through the years, an oral history and remembrances from family members. At another spot, the outlines can be seen of what will be a quotation from Virgil spelled out in letters fashioned from Trade Center steel: "No day shall erase you from the memory of time."
Port Authority Investigating Secret $10 WTC Naming Deal
September 8 - The public agency that owned the World Trade Center sold its naming rights to a nonprofit decades ago for $10 and has to pay to use the name. TheRecordnewspaper of New Jersey reports that a contract shows the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey sold the rights to the World Trade Centers Association in 1986. The newspaper reported that the Port Authority pays $10,000 a year to use the words "World Trade Center," including on merchandise it plans to sell in the new World Trade Center it's building. Those sales could bring an estimated $23 million to $28 million annually. The paper reports the executive who made the deal, Guy Tozzoli, earned millions as president of the nonprofit. He died this year.
Mall on Pier 17 at the South Street Seaport Closes
September 10 - The barn-like mall at the South Street Seaport has closed after 28 years and will be replaced by a glass structure with high-end restaurants. The Pier 17 mall was open for the last time on Monday. The Associated Press reports that construction on the new building is slated to begin next month. The South Street Seaport website says the revitalized Pier 17 will reopen in 2015. It says the new structure also will offer outdoor entertainment, spectacular views of the East River and a food market. The South Street Seaport has been struggling since Superstorm Sandy. Most of the restaurants and theaters have been closed or vacated.
City Marks 12 Years Since World Trade Center Attacks
September 11 - Wednesday marked 12 years since the September 11th attacks, and as usual, a ceremony was held in Lower Manhattan in memory of the victims, reported NY1. The event began with a moment of silence at 8:46 a.m., the time when the first plane hit the North Tower. Family members of victims of the 2001 and 1993 attacks then read the names of those who died. Moments of silence were also observed at the time when the second plane hit the South Tower and at the times each tower fell. For many, attending the ceremony has become a sad tradition, with time not necessarily healing the wounds suffered that day. Most family members agreed that the ceremony provides some comfort and acts as a reminder to people of what happened when our world changed forever. The solemn anniversary was also marked by a day of service, with volunteers doing everything from cleaning and painting firehouses to preparing care packages for active military service members. Two beams of light reached into the sky over Lower Manhattan, re-creating the image of the Twin Towers. The city lost 343 firefighters during the attacks. Sixty-seven died later as a result of complications from rescue and recovery efforts. The New York City Police Department also took a moment Wednesday to pay tribute to its own fallen comrades. Officers gathered in front of precincts across the city to hear a roll call of the 23 names of officers killed in the line of duty or who died from medical complications as a result of their service that day. Meanwhile,in Washington, President Barack Obama observed a moment of silence on the White House lawn. A moment of silence was held at the Pentagon. The brave passengers of United Flight 93 were also honored at a ceremony in Shanksville, Pennsylvania. Bells tolled and the names of the 40 people killed were read aloud. Flight 93 was hijacked after leaving Newark, N.J. It crashed in a field in Pennsylvania after the passengers and crew attempted to regain control of the plane. A memorial wall has been constructed near the crash site.
Looking to a Wall That Limited the Devastation at the World Trade Center
September 11 - Some of the heroes of Sept. 11, 2001, performed their lifesaving work at the World Trade Center many years before the attack, according to the New York Times. Arturo Lamberto Ressi di Cervia, who died last month at 72, supervised the construction of the slurry wall around the trade center foundation in the 1960s. When the towers collapsed in 2001, and the wall began to strain under almost unthinkable pressures from the surrounding water table, his work paid off. The wall held. Because the slurry wall held, the 70-foot-deep foundation did not fill with groundwater. And because of that, the PATH tubes were not submerged. And because of that, the subway tunnels below the PATH tubes were not inundated. How much worse could Sept. 11 have been? Imagine if Hurricane Sandy had followed the terrorist attack by a few hours. The once-lowly wall became a symbol of resilience in the months and years after the attack. Its importance was so widely acknowledged that a portion wasdeliberately left exposedin the colossalFoundation Hallof theNational September 11 Memorial Museum, which is to open next year. Without such a retaining wall, it would have been impossible to excavate the trade center site, much of which was on spongy landfill dating to the 18th century. And conventional foundation wall construction was ruled out because of the many underground obstacles, from ships ballast to the PATH tubes. Thirty-five years later, in 2002, the architectDaniel Libeskinddrew the worlds attention to the symbolic significance of the wall, when he proposed its preservation and exposure as part of the redevelopment of the trade center.
1 WTC Not Yet Tallest in U.S.
September 11 - For years now, it has seemed a foregone conclusion that 1 World Trade Center, the skyscraper that has arisen on the site of the destroyed twin towers in Lower Manhattan, would rise to a symbolic height of 1,776 feet and dethrone Chicago's Willis Tower as the nation's tallest building, according to the Chicago Tribune. But with the 12th anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks approaching Wednesday, new twists in the arcane game of measuring skyscraper height have raised the unlikely possibility that 1 WTC won't be No. 1 and that Willis would retain the coveted titles of the tallest building in the U.S. and the Western Hemisphere. The widely recognized arbiter of skyscraper bragging rights, the Chicago-based Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat, will consider in November whether to knock more than 400 feet off T1s official height, owing to a technical distinction between spires and antennas. According to the council's rule book, spires can be counted in a tall building's height but broadcast antennas, like flagpoles, are superfluous add-ons. The spire versus antenna issue surfaced last year when the Durst Organization, which is co-developing T1 with the Port Authority, confirmed its decision to eliminate a fiberglass and steel "radome" that would serve as an ornamental cover for the skyscraper's mast. The decision, which saved an estimated $20 million in construction costs, was primarily based on concerns that the radome's tapering web of interlocking triangles would prove impossible to maintain, the developers said.
Downtown Alliance Announces LaunchLM Campaign to Grow Tech Sector in Lower Manhattan
September 12 - With an upsurge of technology companies located below Chambers Street, the Alliance for Downtown New York today announced LaunchLM, a new enterprise designed to advance the rising technology community in Lower Manhattan, according to several news sources. LaunchLM will help bring together the current and future innovators in the district to collaborate, share resources and ideas, and network with the thriving businesses already in Lower Manhattan. Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg introduced LaunchLM at a speech today on New York City's post-9/11 renewal. As part of the unveiling of LaunchLM, the Downtown Alliance also announced that its co-working space, the Hive at 55 at 55 Broad Street, will now double as the public headquarters of LaunchLM. The Hive will host lectures, hack-a-thons, educational workshops, and networking events geared towards fostering Lower Manhattan's technology and innovation community. LaunchLM is advised by a council of thought leaders from the New York City technology community who play a critical role in guiding the vision and initiatives of the platform.
Verizon to Sell Condo Interest in Lower Manhattan Building for $274 Million
September 12 - Verizon Communications reached an agreement to sell a portion of its 140 West St. building in Lower Manhattan for $274 million to an affiliate of Magnum Real-Estate Group, which has residential development plans for the space, reported the Wall Street Journal. The largest U.S. phone carrier also said that it plans to return its headquarters to space its owns in Midtown. Verizon stated that the condomimium interest the company is selling in the 140 West St. landmark building encompasses 22 floors and one of the five sub-basement levels. After the sale is completed, the company expects 600 Verizon employees will remain at the Tribeca site. Verizon will retain about 60 percent of the building for telecommunications switching equipment and administrative offices. Magnum Real Estate Group President Benjamin Shaoul said "In light of the success of Walker Tower, the condominium developed above the Chelsea Verizon building, our aim is to convert 140 West St. into another world-class residential property."