February 22nd - February 26th, 2010
â€œ60 Minutesâ€ focuses on WTC delays
February 22 – In a story aired on CBS TV, developer Larry Silverstein called the site ‘a national disgrace.” He also said he is ‘the most frustrated developer in the world.” The story focused on missed deadlines and $7 billion spent in the eight years since the attack. Port Authority Executive Director Chris Ward said most of the site is under construction; the only pits left are Larry’s sites.
Silverstein Offers Additional Money for WTC Site
February 22- Crain’s reports the developer increased his stake in the project to between $150 million and $250 million, a dramatic increase from $50 million he had originally offered. The story says Silverstein also offered to allocate the insurance money and proceeds from his Liberty bonds to build Towers 2 and 3. Silverstein also said to save $262 million he will build Tower 3 instead of the more expensive Tower 2. The PA dismissed the developer’s new financing scheme, calling it ‘a non starter.”
Trump Considers Bid for 1 WTC
February 22 – The New York Post says Trump is thinking about joining the list of developers interested in leasing and managing the tower. Trump has a reputation of getting along with unions and being able to finish buildings on time, according to the paper, which makes him attractive to the PA. Six other developers have submitted bids.
Two More Violations at Deconstruction Project
February 22- Demolition work in the building was halted again last Tuesday because of sparks on the hoist. The Downtown Express reported that DOB also issued a safety violation, when a small electrical fire broke out in a stairwell between the 19th and 20th floors. Work on the building resumed later in the week.
Report Warns of Delays at Transit Hub
February 22- 2015- that’s the latest forecast for completion of the $3.2 billion Transit Hub, according to a story in The New York Post. The paper obtained a report from the FTA, warning that the Hub’s completion date is hampered by the construction of Towers 2 and 3. The report says there’s only a 25% chance of completing the Hub in 2014. The Port Authority says it’s working on plans to build the hub before the towers.
Former Comptroller Thompson Nominated
February 22 – Governor Paterson has nominated Bill Thompson to be the new chairman of the Battery Park City Authority, according to The Battery Park City Broadsheet Daily. Thompson would replace James Gill, who resigned suddenly on February 9th after ten years as the chair. Senate confirmation is needed for the appointment.
Traffic Changes for Chambers Street
February 22 – The street will soon undergo a total reconstruction, costing about $26 million and the work will cause traffic changes for the next three years. The Downtown Express reported Chambers will be reduced to one lane, going westbound. A detour plan is being worked on according to DDC and DOT.
Testwell Convicted of Falsifying Tests
February 22 – Testwell Laboratories president Reddy Kancharla was convicted of falsifying business records in connected with concrete tests at the Freedom tower, 7WTC, Yankee stadium and other projects. Kancharla could get up to 25 years; the jury cleared another Testwell executive, Wilfredo Sanchez, who the prosecution said fudged the inspection results. All of the structures have been retested and deemed safe.
NYC is still an Option for September 11 Trials
February 22 – Attorney General Eric Holder told The Daily News, a Manhattan trial remains in play. Governor Paterson continues to lobby the Obama administration against the idea. “We have tried to point out to the White House that New York is a very vulnerable place,” said the Governor. Paterson added it would be more appropriate to move the trial upstate.
Former Sports Museum space to be Converted to School
February 22 –. The School Construction Authority has signed a 20 year lease for 106,000 square feet at 26 Broadway; the building was once home of the Sports Museum which closed 9 months after it opened in 2008. The story in The Commercial Observer did not specify when the school would open or which grades would be housed there.
LMCC President Resigns
February 22 – Maggie Boepple announced her resignation effective February 10. The Battery Park City Broadsheet Daily reported Diego Segalini will serve as Acting President until a permanent president is named. The LMCC awards more than $500,000 annually to 200 arts projects in Lower Manhattan.
LMDC Settles with Former Insurers
February 25 – AXA and Allianz have agreed to pay $38 million to LMDC for the cost of deconstructing the building; with this payment, the insurers have shelled out $102 million. According to several published reports, the money will help defray the decontamination/deconstruction of the building.
More Convictions in Concrete Testing Scandal
February 25 –. The two top executives of Testwell Laboratories were found guilty of enterprise corruption, a charge that could put them in jail for up to 25 years. The New York Times says the defense tried to show that Testwell’s practices were the same as those of other companies in the industry and therefore were not criminal. Testwell was accused of falsifying tests on WTC 7, the Freedom Tower and Yankee stadium; subsequent tests showed the structures were safe.