April 27th - May 3rd, 2013
11 Years Later, Debris From Plane Is Found Near Ground Zero
April 26 - Police said a piece of what appeared to be landing gear from one of the planes used in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the World Trade Center was found behind two buildings in Lower Manhattan, reported the New York Times and other sources. The piece of gear, which contains a "clearly visible Boeing identification number," was discovered wedged between the rear of 51 Park Place and the rear of a neighboring building, 50 Murray Street, the NYPD said in a statement. The police department is "securing the location as it would a crime scene" and photographing the piece, according to the statement. Access to the area is restricted until the city's chief medical examiner completes a "health and safety protocol," and makes a decision about sifting the soil for possible human remains, the police said. The part won't be removed until the process is complete, when it will be secured by the NYPD's property clerk, police said. Surveyors for the property owner of 51 Park Place were inspecting the rear of the building on the morning of April 24 when they found what they thought was damaged machinery and called police, the NYPD said.
For South Ferry Subway Station, Recovery Just Beginning
April 28 - When the gleaming South Ferry subway terminal in Lower Manhattan opened in 2009, it came with a vast concourse filled with public art installations of wrought iron and smoked glass, polished white walls, and a hefty $500 million price tag, reported NBC News. The cost of rehabilitating it from the devastating effects of Hurricane Sandy? At least $600 million -- though a full assessment of the damage hasn't even been done yet. "It's a complete gut job," said MTA spokesman Kevin Ortiz. "Every component of the station needs to be replaced." As communities rebuild and residents return to their homes, dozens of workers at the South Ferry station are taking the very first steps toward getting the station back online, starting with scrubbing mold from virtually every surface. Before the storm, 30,000 people passed through South Ferry each day, shuttling between Staten Island and Manhattan. But the greatest damage inflicted from Sandy is not visible. The salty ocean water that flooded the station eighty feet below street level corroded nearly every piece of equipment in the space, adding considerably to the cost of recovery. Over 700 relay components -- devices critical to the signaling systems of trains -- were destroyed. A separate room of signaling equipment at the end of the platform flooded to the ceiling and is now a "complete loss," said an MTA official.
Weather Delays Delivery of Top Section of 1 World Trade Center
April 30 - Weather has delayed the scheduled Monday morning delivery of the final two sections of a 408-foot spire to the top of 1 World Trade Center, according to the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. CNN and other news outlets reported that the two sections were scheduled to be delivered to the roof deck, as long as weather allowed on Monday. Once they are installed, they will make the building the tallest in the Western Hemisphere, according to the site's management. The two pieces form a stainless steel beacon weighing almost six tons and will be the final piece put in place to give the building an iconic height of 1,776 feet, according to a news release from the Port Authority. Once the architectural structure is complete, it will be comprised of 18 separate sections of steel and three communication rings. The first -- and heaviest -- steel section was installed in January, weighing more than 67 tons, the news release said.
Thousands March in Manhattan for May Day Protests
May 1 - Thousands of labor protesters flooded Union Square for a May Day demonstration Wednesday afternoon, then marched down to Lower Manhattan, reported DNAinfo.com. Ringed by metal barricades and dozens of cops, the Union Square protesters chanted -- "We stand for justice! The people united will never be defeated!" -- as some pounded on drums and others waved signs denouncing student debt and advocating immigrants' rights. The protest was part of a day of marches and teach-ins to mark International Workers' Day, including a heavily policed Occupy Wall Street march from Tompkins Square Park to Union Square, where the demonstrators spoke to the crowd from a stage. At least five protesters were arrested in the demonstrations, but police would not immediately confirm the arrests. After the Union Square protest, the demonstrators marched down Broadway to Foley Square and City Hall, shutting down traffic as they reached Houston Street, according to traffic expert Sam Schwartz. Protesters spoke out about issues ranging from aid for Hurricane Sandy victims to the high cost of college, but most focused on rights for workers and unions.
East River Pier 42 to Open
May 1 - Ring around the waterfront, a section of the East River Park at Pier 42 will open to the public on May 4, and will eventually form a continuous "green ribbon" around Lower Manhattan, according to the Downtown Express. The redevelopment has been a long time coming since State Senator Daniel Squadron and U.S. Senator Charles Schumer applied for funding with the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation in November of 2010. They secured the funds a year later and began planning with the city Parks Dept. and landscape architects Mathews Nielsen. Where a hulking shell of a warehouse sat amid an empty parking lot at the end of Montgomery St., the pier will be repaved and reopened as a community green space with picnic tables. There will also be a connection to the East River Park at the north end of the space, and the opening day will feature "Paths to Pier 42," a series of art, design and educational installations along the pier and up into the East River Park.
NYPD Removes 9/11 Plane Part from Alley, No Remains Found
May 2 - Police yesterday hauled away the 255-pound hunk of World Trade Center plane wreckage that was recently discovered in a tight alley behind the planned Ground Zero mosque, reported the New York Post and other sources. Once the wing-flap support was removed, the city Medical Examiner's Office began sifting through the soil beneath it in search of human remains. None were found yesterday or in previous days, officials said. The twisted part was discovered last week, wedged between an apartment building and the planned mosque at 51 Park Place. It was a delicate operation. One dozen Emergency Service Unit officers used a pulley system to gingerly hoist the 5-foot-long chunk of metal -- torn from one of the two hijacked Boeing 767s that struck the towers -- over a three-story wall. The 5-foot-by-3-foot rusted part was then lowered onto a dolly and wheeled out through the basement of the planned mosque. "It's a piece of history and we tried to preserve it as best we could,'' said an NYPD spokesperson. "The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner has concluded the inspection at 51 Park Place. All sifting operations have been completed. No potential human remains have been recovered," said OCME spokeswoman Ellen Borakove in a statement.