August 5th - August 11th, 2005
Luxury Condos to Replace Empty Tribeca Lot
Sunday, August 7: A vacant triangular lot located near the Holland Tunnel is slated to be transformed into luxury condos by late 2006, the New York Post reported.
The 8,000-square-foot property, bordered by Watts, Greenwich, and Canal Streets in Tribeca, will be developed by Douglaston Development along with Montagu Square Development, the paper said.
When completed, the seven-story building planned for the lot will feature retail space on its ground floor with 21 luxury condos above. One-bedroom units will be an estimated 850 square feet and come with a price tag of $975,000, while the 3,200-square-foot penthouses will feature private rooftop terraces and cost a projected $4 million, the Post added.
9/11 Siblings to Lead Fourth Anniversary Ceremony
Monday, August 8: The siblings of those who lost their lives on September 11, 2001, will lead this year's solemn fourth anniversary ceremony at Ground Zero, Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Gov. George Pataki announced late last week. As music plays in the background, siblings -- reading in pairs -- will recite the names of the 2,749 victims. For complete coverage, click here.
Goldman Sachs Commits to Building at Ground Zero
Thursday, August 11: The New York Times has reported that Goldman has decided to continue with its plans to build a $2 billion headquarters across the street from the World Trade Center site.
In exchange for its renewed commitment to Lower Manhattan, Goldman -- which withdrew its original plans to build on West Street due to its dissatisfaction with security and safety plans proposed by the state -- will receive an inflated incentive package. In addition to the originally proposed $1 billion in bonds, Goldman will collect at least $150 million in new city and state tax credits, as well as $600 million in new Liberty Bonds, the paper explained.
Adding to the financial incentives, the city has consented to change the streetscape surrounding the proposed two-million-square-foot office tower's site. Included among the revisions is the narrowing of the bike lane and sidewalk on West Street, which would allow room for bollards that would further protect the building. Additionally, officials may reverse the direction of traffic on Murray Street to reduce the amount of vehicles and noise in the area, the Times said.
While the agreement still requires formal approval by Goldman Sach's board, the New York City comptroller, and several state authorities, both Gov. George Pataki and Mayor Michael Bloomberg's administrations remain confident that the deal will progress, the paper noted.
If approved, Goldman is said to be prepared to occupy the new site in 2009, consolidating 9,000 workers in one location from its trading and sales operations, which are currently spread across 10 downtown offices, the Times added.
Lawsuit Over Freedom Tower Design Gets Okay
Thursday, August 11: A lawsuit alleging that architect David M. Childs's 2003 design for the Freedom Tower may have been copied from a 1999 student architectural project, called Olympic Tower and created by Thomas Spine, will be allowed to proceed in a Federal District Court in Manhattan, according to a recent court decision, the New York Times reported.
In his ruling, Judge Michael B. Mukasey stated that several lay observers "might find that the Freedom Tower's twisting shape and undulating diamond-shaped façade make it substantially similar to Olympic Tower, and therefore an improper appropriation" of Shine's copyrighted design, the Times said.
The lawsuit filed by Thomas Shine, a former Yale School of Architecture student, implicates both Childs and his firm, Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, in the copyright violation. According to Shine, the Freedom Tower design replicates various components of his Olympic Tower, which was presented before a panel that included Childs, who was later quoted in the school magazine positively critiquing Shine's work, the paper explained.
Both Childs and Skidmore, Owings & Merrill have denied the allegation, arguing that the twisting tower design is a common architectural design scheme that Shine did not originate, the Times added.
The Freedom Tower design under scrutiny has already been withdrawn and redesigned due to security concerns raised by the New York Police Department. As a result, the lawsuit should not impact the construction timeline for the current tower, the paper noted.