View Poll Results: Construction is underway, how do you feel about the final design for the WTC site?

192. You may not vote on this poll
  • I am more than satisfied; I believe that the final design surpasses that of the original World Trade Center. 10/10

    50 26.04%
  • While nothing may ever live up to the Twin Towers, I am wholly satisfied with the new World Trade Center; it is a new symbol for a new era. 7/10

    55 28.65%
  • I have come to terms with the new World Trade Center; although it has a number of flaws, I find the design to be acceptable. 5/10

    48 25.00%
  • I am wholly disappointed with the New World Trade Center; we will live to regret the final design. 0/10

    22 11.46%
  • I am biased, but honest, and hate anything that is not a reincarnation of the original Twin Towers.

    17 8.85%
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Thread: World Trade Center Developments

  1. #1021


    See this topic. This thread and forum section are reserved for actual proposals.

  2. #1022


    February 15, 2005

    An Overseer Is Chosen for All Work Downtown


    Charles J. Maikish, named executive director of the Lower Manhattan Construction Command Center.

    harles J. Maikish, a former Port Authority official who was responsible for rebuilding the World Trade Center after the 1993 terrorist attack, was named yesterday to oversee rebuilding throughout downtown.

    He is to be the first executive director of the Lower Manhattan Construction Command Center, created three months ago by Gov. George E. Pataki and Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg to bring some order to the building, demolition and roadwork in one of the city's densest and most constricted quarters.

    Neighbors and businesses have despaired about the prospect of so much work occurring simultaneously that streets will become impassable, noise will become deafening and the air will grow thick with dust, if not hazardous contaminants.

    "Within six months, we're going to have so much construction down here that it's good he's coming now," said Madelyn Wils, the chairwoman of Community Board 1. She said: "Charlie is direct. He's a person of action. And when he starts this job, it will come together fairly quickly. He knows who he needs to talk to."

    Mr. Maikish, 57, lives in New City, N.Y., and is currently the executive vice president of global real estate business services at J. P. Morgan Chase & Company.

    But his familiarity with the trade center site runs from the ground up. In 1968, as an engineering student, he joined the Port Authority as a provisional employee. Among his tasks was to strike bedrock around the twin towers' foundations with an iron bar to determine, from the sound, whether it was solid enough to build on.

    As director of the authority's World Trade Department from 1991 to 1996, Mr. Maikish supervised the recovery of the trade center after the first attack. Some measures he and his colleagues instituted were credited with saving lives on Sept. 11, 2001.

    Mr. Maikish and Frank Lombardi, the chief engineer of the authority, removed stores and created new corridors in the shopping concourse. In "102 Minutes: The Untold Story of the Fight to Survive Inside the Twin Towers" (Times Books and Henry Holt, 2005), Jim Dwyer and Kevin Flynn wrote, "They had done underground what could not be done to the towers themselves: given more people better chances to get out."

    In his new $200,000-a-year job, Mr. Maikish will supervise work in Lower Manhattan south of Canal Street and southwest of Rutgers Street. The command center will coordinate all roadwork and other construction projects that are valued at more than $25 million, that are financed by Liberty Bonds or that require government action or permits.

    Though his full-time transition from the bank to the command center will not occur until April, Mr. Maikish said in an interview yesterday that he intended to begin immediately. "This is the right time," he said. "Six months from now would be too late."

    He added that there had been "a lot of good planning and a lot of coordination" leading up to his appointment, which was announced by the governor and the mayor.

    Mr. Maikish will conduct a cacophonous orchestra - cat herding may be a better analogy - whose players include the city and state Transportation Departments, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, the Battery Park City Authority, the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, the city's Design and Construction Department, the Economic Development Corporation, Silverstein Properties, Verizon, Consolidated Edison, the Police and Fire Departments and at least five other agencies and bodies.

    "It means getting people to put aside agendas," Mr. Maikish said. His goal, he said, was to keep everyone focused on the greater objective of rebuilding Lower Manhattan, "so we don't get weighed down in minutiae and weighed down in obstructions."

    Last month, Verizon warned publicly that without better coordination, telephone service downtown and the trade center development timetable might be jeopardized. Yesterday, Paul A. Crotty, the group president for New York and Connecticut, welcomed Mr. Maikish's appointment, citing his "skills, experience, expertise and temperament."

    Carl Weisbrod, the president of the Alliance for Downtown New York, said, "It was worth the wait to get a quality appointment." (The Alliance said last month that if an executive director were not appointed soon, the command center risked "becoming obsolete before it is even operational.") Mr. Weisbrod said Mr. Maikish had been "an intimate part of this community for a very, very long time."

    Iris Weinshall, the city transportation commissioner, said Mr. Maikish would bring "a wealth of experience in both construction and property management."

    Before joining Chase Manhattan Bank in 1998, Mr. Maikish was vice president for facilities management at Columbia University. But most of his career was at the Port Authority, which yesterday also praised his appointment. He was principal attorney in the litigation division from 1977 to 1986 and director of ferry operations from 1986 to 1990.

    Copyright 2005 The New York Times Company

  3. #1023


    February 18, 2005

    At 9/11 Site, First Memorial Is for 2/26/93


    Milgo/Bufkin in Brooklyn, a metal shop that made interior steel for the World Trade Center and the new pylon memorializing the 1993 bombing.

    he first formal memorial at ground zero - a stainless-steel reliquary honoring those who died in the Feb. 26, 1993, bombing and those who brought the World Trade Center back to life - will be dedicated next week on the 12th anniversary of the attack.

    After a service at St. Peter's Roman Catholic Church nearby and a moment of silence at the site itself, relatives and friends and colleagues of the six people who died that day will watch as the Port Authority Police Department honor guard places a granite fragment inside a nine-and-a-half-foot pylon on Liberty Street.

    Proportioned like one of the twin towers, the pylon was made at Milgo/Bufkin, an 89-year-old metalwork shop in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, which furnished the stainless-steel interiors for the original trade center, like wall panels, window frames, handrails.

    The fragment to be placed within the pylon, inscribed "mem" (part of "memoria") and "John D" ("John DiGiovanni," one of the victims), is all that remains of an earlier memorial fountain that stood outside the north tower and was destroyed on Sept. 11, 2001. This small, irregular chunk of rose-colored stone has taken on deep significance to those who are still mourning an event that history seems to have overshadowed.

    "While the magnitude of loss on Sept. 11 was so great, we can never forget the attack and the losses eight years earlier," Gov. George E. Pataki said yesterday. He and Acting Gov. Richard J. Codey of New Jersey expect to attend the ceremony next week.

    The pylon is an interim step until the completion in 2009 of the greater memorial, devoted to the victims of both attacks. Conceivably, the pylon will find a permanent home in the underground memorial center, perhaps near the actual site of the bombing.

    "We're certainly looking for a meaningful place," said Kevin M. Rampe, president of the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation.

    For now, the pylon will stand in what is called the family viewing area, overlooking the canyonlike trade center foundations. This area is closed to the general public, but passers-by will most likely be able to glimpse the pylon through a fence. The steel has a "velvety, sparkly finish," said Bruce Gitlin, the president and owner of Milgo/Bufkin.

    Michael Gericke, a partner in the Pentagram studio, which designed the pylon with Jacqueline Hanley, a senior architect at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, called the pylon "a reliquary, a container for this object that has enormous importance."

    The fragment will be housed behind half-inch laminated glass in a vitrine formed by a 45-degree cut in the pylon. The vitrine will contain a plaque about the original memorial, by Elyn Zimmerman, which included the inscription, "Esta fuente está dedicada en memoria de aquéllos que perdieron sus vidas." ("This fountain is dedicated to the memory of those who lost their lives.")

    The Port Authority, which built the pylon at a cost of about $50,000, is keeping it under wraps until the dedication. "We wanted the families to be the first to see it and to dedicate it in their presence," said Norma Manigan, the manager of public affairs.

    The 1993 attack left a small enough corps of immediate survivors that the authority tries to involve all of them in events and decisions. Last year, they gave their blessing to the pylon idea. "Everyone was very much in favor of it," said Charles J. Maikish, director of the World Trade Center in 1993. This week, he was named executive director of the Lower Manhattan Construction Command Center.

    "As we've maintained all along," Mr. Maikish said, "9/11 was the culmination of an attack that began in 1993."

    A granite fragment of the original fountain monument to the 1993 bombing, which was destroyed on Sept. 11, will be housed behind glass in a nine-and-a-half-foot steel pylon on Liberty Street.

    Copyright 2005 The New York Times Company

  4. #1024
    Moderator NYatKNIGHT's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Manhattan - South Village


    March 15, 2005

    Downtown Arts Plan Remains Uncertain


    fter a tough competition, it was with great fanfare that four cultural institutions were selected last June to take up residence at ground zero. Each of the arts groups solemnly expressed its thanks. Dancers performed onstage to the sound of drums. Gov. George E. Pataki and Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg sat beaming side by side on a dais at the World Financial Center.

    "This is sacred ground," Governor Pataki said at the time. "We wanted to have cultural institutions that would reflect our pride, our courage."

    Yet in the nine months since, those arts institutions have been under pressure to prove themselves all over again. And even as the development corporation in charge of rebuilding ground zero prepares to unveil a design in the next few weeks for a museum complex at the site, it is by no means certain who will occupy it.

    In theory, that building, by the Norwegian architectural firm Snohetta, will house the Drawing Center, a nonprofit museum that presents drawing shows in SoHo, and the Freedom Center, a new institution that will organize exhibitions related to human rights. The other building, a performing arts center, would be occupied by the Joyce Theater, which presents dance, and the Signature Theater, an Off Broadway company. The cost of each of those buildings was originally estimated at $250 million, though now they are expected to cost more.

    But the prospects for all four arts groups remain murky. Despite pledges of support, the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation has yet to specify how much it will contribute toward the groups' construction and operating costs. The World Trade Center Memorial Foundation was created in December to raise $500 million for the cultural buildings, but no chairman has been named and the development corporation will not say whether any funds have been raised.

    "We have heard from many people a sense of confusion and uncertainty about what the cultural plan is for downtown," said Tom Healy, president of the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, an advocacy organization.

    On Feb. 15, the Drawing Center and the nascent Freedom Center submitted their feasibility proposals to the development corporation after conferring with financial advisers and nonprofit arts consultants; details have not been disclosed. The corporation must now determine whether construction of the museum complex can be financed and whether the groups can sustain their operations downtown.

    "These are painful discussions for the institutions," said Kevin M. Rampe, the president of the development corporation. "We're asking them hard questions, making them make commitments. No one's in until we've gone through the process."

    "Obviously," he added, "there's a presumption they'll be in."

    As for what the development corporation expects of the groups in terms of fund-raising, he said, "The institutions need to be pushed as far as possible to see what can be raised so it is less of a drain on the L.M.D.C. and the Memorial Foundation."

    The Joyce and the Signature have more time to refine their proposals; the release of a design of the performing arts center by the architect Frank Gehry was postponed in January pending further study of how the building could accommodate the two organizations' four theaters.

    Complicating matters, Mr. Gehry submitted a design that would cost considerably more than expected - about $400 million, according to one estimate.

    The development corporation says it made clear at the outset that the cultural groups would have to demonstrate that they could survive downtown. Indeed, the news release issued when the arts groups were selected said the corporation would enter into "a formal agreement" with them after "a detailed feasibility analysis of their proposed programming, funding capacity and space requirements."

    Still, people involved with all four groups have expressed some frustration over the process, although leaders of those institutions do not directly fault the development corporation.
    Speaking of the selection announcement, Linda Shelton, executive director of the Joyce Theater, said: "You could say that was a little confusing. I think maybe there is something kind of askew with having to go through this next feasibility phase that we're in."

    Ms. Shelton admitted to feeling somewhat deflated about the delay. "Given the momentum we started with, it's a little disappointing for us," she said. "At the same time, we realize we only have one opportunity to do this and we need to do it right."

    Andrea Woodner, the chairwoman of the Drawing Center board's steering committee on the project, said in a prepared statement: "The process has been rigorous and fair. Should the final decision be in our favor, the building and the setting will truly afford us an incomparable position for our future growth."

    Among the issues being addressed for the museum complex, Mr. Rampe said, are the number of visitors expected, potential retail and restaurant operations, how many people would fit into the building, and appropriate ratios of earned to contributed income. "I'm not surprised we're going through it," he said.

    The Memorial Foundation, whose board members include David Rockefeller, Robert De Niro, Barbara Walters and Michael D. Eisner, is expected eventually to take over much of the development corporation's responsibilities. "The foundation was created to raise money for, own, operate and maintain the cultural and memorial portions of the site," Mr. Rampe said.

    Mr. Rampe said the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation had about $800 million in federal funds remaining for development of the entire ground zero site, including the Freedom Tower, an office building for which the cornerstone was laid last summer, and a new transportation hub. "Our demands exceed our available revenues," he said.

    The corporation has been asked by the governor and the mayor to provide an allocation plan by the end of the month, he said.

    The timing of the construction is also unclear. For example, developers may want to use the future site of the performing arts center as a staging area for construction of the Freedom Tower. This could mean that construction on the performing arts center would not begin until the Freedom Tower was completed. But Mr. Rampe said it would not affect the construction timetable, which calls for both cultural buildings to be completed by 2009 or 2010.

    James Houghton, the artistic director of the Signature Theater, said the development corporation recently "asked that we bring other experts in to vet our assumptions." These include people at cultural organizations who have gone through capital campaigns, he said.

    Some people involved in the process have speculated that the TriBeCa Film Festival might replace the Drawing Center or the Signature Theater, should either withdraw or be rejected. The film festival has been promised the use of space in the cultural buildings for its annual spring screenings, but it also needs permanent space for its year-round operations.

    Mr. Rampe said it would be premature to consider any substitute cultural organizations. "There has never been discussion of replacing any institution," he said.

    Asked whether the Joyce had considered the possibility that it might not end up at ground zero, Ms. Shelton, the executive director, said: "I don't think I'd be doing my job if we didn't always question that. What we originally said we want to do, we still want to do. Whether that is really a possibility in light of the complications of the site remains to be seen."

    Copyright 2005 The New York Times Company

  5. #1025

    Default And that's why you don't use Gehry...

    Quote Originally Posted by NYatKNIGHT
    March 15, 2005

    The Joyce and the Signature have more time to refine their proposals; the release of a design of the performing arts center by the architect Frank Gehry was postponed in January pending further study of how the building could accommodate the two organizations' four theaters.

    Complicating matters, Mr. Gehry submitted a design that would cost considerably more than expected - about $400 million, according to one estimate.

    Copyright 2005 The New York Times Company
    Are we at all surprised that gehry came in way over budget? Don't use the guy! He's a fad, does the same thing everywhere, and it always goes over budget and leaks... pick someone, like snohetta (the architects for the other buildings) that is up and coming and actually cares enough to do a good job!

  6. #1026
    Chief Antagonist Ninjahedge's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003


    A famous architect going overbudget in a high profile design?


  7. #1027


    I cant understand why gehry isnt embarassed as he obviously just uses the exact same model for all of his buildings! And that design doesnt even look good

  8. #1028



    Last Piece of Trade Center Puzzle May Not Be an Easy Fit

    THE clock ran out last week for public comments on New York State's plan to condemn almost an entire block south of ground zero, the last parcel needed for the full redevelopment of the World Trade Center site.

    Conspicuously absent from the comments submitted to the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation was any objection from the Milstein family, owners of the land the state proposes to take.

    "We're hopeful that we will have a satisfactory resolution soon," said a spokesman for Paul and Howard P. Milstein, father and son, who run Milstein Properties and are co-chairmen of the Emigrant Savings Bank.

    The Milsteins' conciliatory statement, which is all they will say on the subject, sets the stage for negotiations - one step ahead of formal condemnation - over a vital parcel that is to serve as the gateway to the ramps, service roads, loading docks and parking spaces under the future trade center.

    "We remain hopeful that we'll be able to reach a negotiated settlement," Kevin M. Rampe, president of the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, said yesterday.

    Known on city maps as Block 56, this parallelogram-shaped property is bounded by Liberty, Washington, Cedar and West Streets. The Milsteins own all but the lot on which St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church stood until it was crushed by 2 World Trade Center.

    But the Milsteins have been unable to use their land since Sept. 11, 2001. Today, Block 56 is controlled by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. It serves as a parking lot, staging area and roadway into the trade center site.

    The Milsteins bought their 20,000-square-foot property in 1978. In 1981, they announced plans for a 35-story, 400,000-square-foot office building, to be called 1 World Plaza, or 140 Liberty Street. Designed by the Vilkas Group, it would have been connected at the second-story level with a pedestrian bridge to 1 Bankers Trust Plaza, which was later known as the Deutsche Bank building.

    There was no market for that project, but the Milsteins kept exploring possibilities. They tried to acquire the St. Nicholas property, going so far as to discuss projects in which they would construct a new sanctuary for the Greek Orthodox church in the base of a larger building. More recently, they had focused on residential or hotel development. Meanwhile, the site was used as a parking lot.

    Control of the property was assumed by the City Department of Design and Construction after Sept. 11, 2001. The city then passed control to the Port Authority.

    The authority has never entered into a lease or other agreement with the Milsteins, although there were some discussions in 2002. The authority has not paid any money to the Milsteins for using this block.

    (The church property will not be taken by eminent domain but swapped for a larger parcel nearby on which a new sanctuary and interdenominational center will be built.)

    The planners of the trade center site originally envisioned that Block 56 would be part of the new Liberty Park, with St. Nicholas Church at its west end. The ramp to the underground roadways was to be on the north side of Liberty Street.

    PLANS now call for the ramp to be on the south side. That permits two-way traffic on Liberty Street and separates what will be a heavily used ramp from the memorial.

    But the trade center site is an interlocking puzzle. No planning problem can be solved without creating another one. To accommodate trucks and buses, the ramp entrance will need a great deal of headroom; so much that it will force the construction of a 20-foot earthen mound, or berm, in the middle of Liberty Park.

    This berm could overwhelm the new church and loom over the south end of the memorial plaza. On the other hand, if it were creatively conceived and designed, it might offer a fine vantage from which to view the memorial.

    Before any of that happens, however, the Milsteins will almost certainly seek compensation for the three-and-a-half years - and counting - in which they have been deprived of access to their property.

    Just how much compensation remains to be seen. They have already turned down a $30 million offer from the development corporation. (Last week, the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development approved the corporation's plan to spend $44.5 million to acquire the whole site, including the Milsteins' property.)

    The Milsteins are also interested in a land swap. It would not take much imagination to conclude that their sights are set on Battery Park City, which is controlled by a state authority. They have already developed four apartment buildings there: Liberty Court, Liberty House, Liberty Terrace and Liberty View.

    "All options are on the table," Mr. Rampe said.

    Block 56, where St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church once stood, is now owned by the Milstein family, and will form part of Liberty Park.

  9. #1029
    Forum Veteran MidtownGuy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    East Midtown

    Default looks more hopeless everyday

    it seems we will, after all, end up with this hideous chicken-coop of a tower. The activist in me wants to organize a rally down there, denouncing the current tower plan. Too bad it'll never happen. The sheeple are busy watching their fake reality shows. Other elements, like the Calatrava contribution, will be gorgeous, but i just can't accept what the tower has devolved into.

  10. #1030


    Granted the FT is not the best looking...but this article doesn't even mention the FT.

  11. #1031
    Forum Veteran MidtownGuy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    East Midtown


    True, but the thread, titled World Trade Center Developments, has touched on so many aspects of the rebuilding. I had been reading along for many pages and the FT comment was my two-cents- take it or leave it.

  12. #1032
    Build the Tower Verre antinimby's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    in Limbo


    The activist in me wants to organize a rally down there, denouncing the current tower plan
    Why don't you?!!
    Sign me up.
    I've never protested anything before but this seems like a good place to start.
    Considering the importance and symbolism of the rebuilding of this site, the FT is horrendous and we just can't sit idly by and watch.
    It's still not too late.
    Maybe if we make enough noise, we'd get some media coverage and Silverstein/Pataki will wake up.
    Last edited by antinimby; March 18th, 2005 at 01:07 PM.

  13. #1033

    Thumbs up

    MidtownGuy: Create a thread and spearhead the effort, Ill be involved as long as its not futile ie: bring back the twins. If its for a landmark Freedom Tower that us New Yorkers can be proud of count me in.

  14. #1034


    Honestly, the whole plan is horrendous. Because Silverstein wants to replace all of the lost office space, we're going to be stuck with a crowded district.

    I used to hate the idea of turning the entire site into a park, but now I don't think that's a bad idea. It sure as hell is better than what's being planned now. Just imagine how crowded it's going to be with all of the workers along with all the tourists.

    Someone needs to turn the light on over at the LMDC. They can't honestly think that what they're doing is good. It's all just a series of compromises that nobody likes. I think the only part of the sight that everyone can agree upon is Calatrava's transit hub.

    Three and a half years and the only thing that's promising is a train station.

  15. #1035
    Banned Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Park Slope, Brooklyn, NY


    I don't see what the argument is against replacing the space lost - in whatever configuration is developed. The district supported that amount of space and the people who come with it. The replacement of the grid, even if only for pedestrian uses, certainly creates a better and more expansive area for foot traffic.

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