Progress continued downtown
In the nine years since September 11, 2001, Lower Manhattan has seen over 34 lane-miles of streets rebuilt, more than 6,200 hotel rooms created, and more than 13 million square feet of residential real estate completed. That adds up to more than $22 billion in construction projects -- from new construction to conversions, and rehabilitations to capital infrastructure works.
The infusion of federal funding that followed 9/11 prompted many of these public and private works. At the World Trade Center, the public-private partnership of the Port Authority and Silverstein Properties is now actively building at all corners of the site. The Metropolitan Transportation Authority is shifting to superstructure construction at the Fulton Transit Center. And the City of New York is replacing century-old water mains with a new network that’s also installing other new utilities and rebuilding roadways and sidewalks.
To highlight some of the work that’s been done over the past year, LowerManhattan.info has compiled a recap of downtown’s rebuilding milestones.
For a full timeline of the progress made downtown over the past few years, click here.
· The City of New York held its eighth annual September 11th commemoration ceremony. In honor of the new federal designation of September 11th as a National Day of Service and Remembrance, family members were paired with volunteers from throughout the five boroughs to read the names of the 2,752 victims.
· Mayor Bloomberg released the annual medical research review of potential health impacts of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. The 2009 Annual Report on 9/11 Health includes a review of 48 recent studies analyzed by the city’s WTC Medical Working Group.
· Air monitoring data from the Lower Manhattan Construction Command Center (LMCCC) shows that downtown air quality improved over the past several years. The agency’s Environmental Compliance program helped minimize construction-related air pollution south of Canal Street, despite the unprecedented amount of development taking place.
|Washing dirt off of trucks helps reduce dust particles in the air
· The New York City Economic Development Corporation completed the second phase of security and streetscape improvements around the New York Stock Exchange area.
· The Downtown Alliance, Lower Manhattan’s Business Improvement District, released a “visioning study” for the 23-block neighborhood south of the WTC site known as Greenwich South.
· The Cortlandt Street R/W station was met with a welcome return to service on November 25th. Downtown leaders joined MTA Chairman and CEO Jay Walder to cut the ribbon outside the rebuilt station.
· The city EDC met with Community Board 1 (CB1) to discuss the future Performing Arts Center at the WTC. Officials said that architect Frank Gehry is still on board to design the center, and that the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation’s allocation of $55 million for its planning and construction is secure.
· On November 2nd, the Navy’s new USS New York arrived in its namesake city for her commissioning. Built with 7.5 tons of steel recovered from the WTC, the ship paused in the Hudson River across from the WTC to lower her flag and render a 21-gun salute in honor of those lost on September 11, 2001.
|USS New York
· The LMCCC hosted the New York City Comptroller’s Prevailing Wage Council on December 16th. (For more information on the recovery act and the stimulus funds visit www.Recovery.gov).
· The final block of the three-year Beekman Street reconstruction project began, with crews replacing utilities and rebuilding sidewalks, curbs, and roadway.
· The Port Authority reported to CB1 that structural steel installation is rapidly going up in three corners of the WTC site, including at Towers 1 and 4 as well as the National 9/11 Memorial.
|WTC Site January 2010
· MTA crews closed the A/C mezzanine ramps, marking a milestone in Fulton Street Transit Center construction. The ramps removal makes room for the main building’s erection.
· The LMCCC, the Port Authority, and the National 9/11 Memorial will be working with Steven Spielberg on a Science Channel documentary about the WTC rebuilding, entitled “Rebuilding Ground Zero,” to air on the in 2011.
· The LMCCC’s new “Downtown Projects and Streetworks Map” is launched, integrating the various information streams into one source, viewed through Google Maps.
· With improvements to pedestrian bridges, crosswalks, and traffic signals, the state’s $189 million Promenade South Segment 2 project continues to roll out upgrades to the West Side Highway from West Thames up to Chambers Street.
· The deconstruction of 130 Liberty Street is lowered to floors 19 and 18, with the contractor permitted to work two shifts daily to help expedite the deconstruction.
· The Port Authority and Silverstein Properties reach a “development framework” agreement that would allow for construction of two new towers to proceed with up to $1.6 billion in public financing and subsidies.
· Under its Traffic Management Plan, the LMCCC has outfitted the most high-traffic areas south of Canal Street with 27 traffic monitoring cameras, eight solar-powered Variable Message Signs, two Highway Advisory broadcast radio stations, and 13 transponder readers. In addition, 152 new traffic sensors are now in the process of being installed throughout downtown.
|LMCCC's Traffic Management Plan is implemented
· CB1 heard the latest details about the NYPD’s Lower Manhattan traffic command, which focuses on managing vehicular traffic as a means to greater overall traffic safety throughout the post-9/11 rebuilding.
· The African Burial Ground National Monument became home to a new Visitor Center with exhibit spaces, store, and 40-person theater. The center is located on the first floor of the Ted Weiss Federal Building at 290 Broadway, at Duane Street.
· The four-year rehabilitation of the Brooklyn Bridge mobilized on both sides of the landmark bridge. Closures and bus stop relocations also began to create safe work zones throughout the project.
· One WTC rises above the 24th level, with concrete being poured daily to set each expansive floorplate.
· Three years since it began, the major undertaking to replace and repair Fulton Street and its infrastructure began winds down. New phases of the streetscape improvement program begin.
· A new blue “cocoon,” an innovative perimeter protection system, is now in place at the top of 1 WTC. Because the system is modular, it will be raised as more floors are added and the cranes are jumped to higher elevations.
· The city Parks and Recreation Department continues to bring more green spaces, innovative playgrounds, and serene shady plazas to Lower Manhattan -- part of a gradual rollout funded by more than $82 million from the LMDC.
· Bike month began, and city Department of Transportation Bike Program manager Stephen Pinkus answers three questions for LowerManhattan.info.
· Construction of the two National 9/11 Memorial and Museum reflecting pools are making steady progress, with black granite panels being installed. Steel on the Memorial entry pavilion also is being erected, and trees on the surrounding plaza will begin being planted in August 2010.
|As of June, the granite wall was nearly complete
· The former 12-story commercial/industrial tower at 130 Cedar Street was converted to the new World Center Hotel, overlooking the WTC site, following an extensive abatement process and the addition of eight more stories.
· The LMCCC presented the latest construction and logistics information to CB1. Executive Director Robert Harvey shared details about logistics, street coordination, and the new LowerManhattan.info “4D” interactive construction map. The agency also monitors for air quality and noise levels, and recently launched an Intelligent Transportation System to maintain traffic flow, complete with real-time camera and sensors that tie into the city DOT network.
· Following the reconfiguration of the Liberty Street pedestrian bridge in April, the Port Authority has excavated 32,000 tons of soil from the south bathtub -- more than half of the total to be removed.
· The Imagination Playground at Burling Slip drew a crowd of VIPs and dozens of children, who quickly dove into piles of interactive play equipment and water features at the new one-of-a-kind playground in the heart of the Seaport district.
|Beekman Tower rises 76 floors
· The summer was especially busy from an archaeological perspective in Lower Manhattan. The Port Authority, which for years now has been digging deeper than ever at the WTC site, uncovered sizeable new artifacts.
· The iconic rippling silver façade of Beekman Tower is nearly complete, and the north construction hoist is removed.
· Steel columns became visible at the site of the new 16-story Fiterman Hall, located at 30 West Broadway at Barclay Street -- on track for fall 2012 completion.
· WTC rebuilding officials authorized a new development plan that will build the east side of the site up to at least street level. The series of agreements that form the development plan follow the framework outlined on March 25, 2010, by the Port Authority and Silverstein Properties.
· With final paving complete for the Liberty Street Reconstruction project, the six large bronze sculptures by Louise Nevelson are returned to the public plaza named for her.
· The city’s Chambers Street and the Third Water Tunnel Trunk project on and around Hudson Street began, kicking off major water-main replacement programs in Tribeca.
|The first of 16 trees were planted on the WTC Memorial Plaza
· The remnants of the historic ship uncovered at the WTC south bathtub is believed to be a schooner or dual-masted brigantine from the late 18th century. The excavation process has been well documented, with a special revolving panoramic glimpse recorded and posted online here.
· Taking inspiration from the sidewalk cafés and public plazas of Europe and California, the city DOT plans to open three new pedestrian-only spaces in Lower Manhattan.
· MTA work to make the new South Ferry bus loop a terminal for “Select Bus Service” begins.
· The September 11 Memorial planted the first sixteen trees on the Memorial Plaza.
· The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation announced the extension of the Small Firm Assitance Program.