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WTC Developer Threatens Arbitration Over Stalled Ground Zero Talks

Photograph of the WTC Transportation Hub last month by Joe Woolhead/Silverstein Properties
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Photograph of the WTC Transportation Hub last month by Joe Woolhead/Silverstein Properties

Surprise, surprise: In the weeks since the various players in the World Trade Center's development met, nothing has happened! Even though politicians, including Mayor Bloomberg and Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (in "a startling alliance"!), have criticized the Port Authority for slowing the progress of Ground Zero's future, since the PA refuses to pay for all the towers that developer Larry Silverstein wants, the Port Authority hasn't budged. Now Silverstein has given the Port Authority two weeks to come to an agreement, or else he'll take the whole thing to arbitration. Which could mean more delays.

Silverstein, who gained the lease to the World Trade Center shortly before the 9/11 attacks, is allowed to develop three towers, but the Port Authority says it can only finance one tower—prompting renderings of what the Towers would look like as short "stumpy" buildings.

2009_07_postoc.jpgThe Post's Steve Cuozzo joins piling on the Port Authority by slamming the Santiago Calatrava's design for the PATH hub planned for Groun Zero. Besides pointing out how the Port Authority refers Grand Central Terminal as "Grand Central Station," he writes, "The agency should admit that the Hub's most visible public space ... is actually, and absurdly, much bigger than Grand Central's main hall, as the drawing [pictured] shows... The Hub is an unconscionable waste of precious Ground Zero earth, money and energy. For starters, it's still basically just a new PATH terminal, serving a relative handful of commuters. Again, the drawing helps make the point." The hub has faced some design changes, because the Port Authority wants to cut costs.

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