April 22nd - April 28th, 2005
7 World Trade Boasts Hi-Tech Safety and Security Features
Friday, April 22: New information and images of 7 World Trade Center, the first office tower to be built at Ground Zero, reveal a glass-enclosed 52-story building, complete with state-of-the-art safety designs, the New York Post reported.
According to WTC leaseholder Larry Silverstein, the 1.7-million-square-foot tower includes two-foot-thick steel-reinforced concrete stairwells and emergency systems that exceed all current building code requirements. In addition to containing stairwells that are 20 percent wider than current codes, 7 WTC will also operate a new security system that will read computer chips carried by all workers and visitors, enabling it to detect their arrival, the paper explained.
Each of the safety and security improvements will be incorporated into all five remaining towers planned for the World Trade Center site, including the Freedom Tower, where stairwell walls will actually measure three feet thick, the Post noted.
The new 7 World Trade Center is slated for completion in 2006.
Staten Island Ferry Service Expands
Monday, April 25: Mayor Michael Bloomberg joined several city officials, including Staten Island Borough President James P. Molinaro and New York City Department of Transportation (DOT) Commissioner Iris Weinshall, at Staten Island's St. George Terminal to announce support of a new bill to increase the frequency of Staten Island Ferry service.
"In addition to two beautiful new terminals, three new boats, that are either in operation or are soon to be, we will now have more late night, early morning, and weekend service," Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced in a statement.
The bill, which represents the first major increase in ferry service in decades, calls for the addition of three weekday ferry runs. The first to be added will be a 5:30 a.m. boat departing from St. George Terminal. In order to ease overcrowding, the city will also add a fourth boat providing ferry service every 15 minutes between 7 and 8 a.m. Finally, a ferry will depart from Whitehall Terminal at 1 a.m. and provide service until 1:30 a.m.
Within 18 months, the city will also introduce additional weekend ferry runs. On Saturdays, ferries will be available every half hour from 6 to 11 a.m., and on Sundays, every half hour beginning at 9 a.m. Currently, service does not begin until 11 a.m. on both days.
The DOT will also install counters to record the daily numbers of ferry passengers. At the conclusion of the 12-month trial period, the DOT will analyze the data to assess service demands and work with the city to adjust service accordingly.
New Website Features Latest Traffic, Transit Conditions
Monday, April 25: Commuters in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut now have access to up-to-date traffic and transit conditions thanks to a new website, www.trips123.com, reported the New York Times.
The site, which launched in April 2005, compiles transportation information from 16 regional agencies, including the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, the paper said.
Currently the site offers free highway and transit updates and a "TransitAdvisor" page to help visitors plan trips using area subways, buses, and commuter trains. Eventually, the site will offer subscription services for a monthly fee, which will include customized notices about daily routes sent by telephone, cell phone, pager, fax, or e-mail, the Times added.
Jobs Website Operator Switches to Soho
Monday, April 25: Jobs website operator www.TheLadders.com announced that it has relocated its Chelsea headquarters to Soho, Crain's reported.
The company's new 12,000-square-foot location at 137 Varick Street brings it closer to its Wall Street area client base, as well as several internet and graphic design firms, Crain's said.
Launched in late 2003, TheLadders.com lists high-level positions in the finance, marketing, sales, human resources, technology, legal, and operations fields, Crain's explained.
Rebuilding Officials Address Security Concerns
Wednesday, April 27: Gov. George Pataki and Mayor Michael Bloomberg met to discuss the progress of the downtown redevelopment plan, taking into consideration ongoing security concerns and potential tenants for the new World Trade Center site, the New York Times reported.
"The Freedom Tower should be built with the highest safety and security standards, yet allow for a soaring design that reclaims New York's skyline with an enduring symbol of freedom," a spokesperson for Gov. Pataki told the Times.
While developers at Ground Zero continue to tackle design changes associated with the multitude of projects planned for the site, security concerns voiced by the New York City Police Department (NYPD) about the location of the Freedom Tower and area traffic have contributed to project delays of several months, the paper explained.
Rebuilding officials are continuing to take all safety and security matters into consideration while still moving forward with the rebuilding process. Changes in the plans for the Freedom Tower are not expected to slow other projects on the site, the Times noted.