Press Release Article


Date: Apr 01, 2004
Press Release Number: 35-2004

Contributes $1 Million to Lower Manhattan Institution

The Port Authority Board of Commissioners today approved a contribution of $1 million for the Robert M. Morgenthau Wing at the Museum of Jewish Heritage, located in Lower Manhattan’s Battery Park City. The museum is a living memorial to those who died in the Holocaust, honoring them by celebrating their lives, Jewish traditions, culture and faith.

Port Authority Chairman Anthony R. Coscia said, “The Museum of Jewish Heritage has been an important cultural institution in New York City since its opening in 1997. The history of the Jewish community is interwoven in the history of New York and the entire region. The Port Authority is proud to support the museum.”

Port Authority Vice Chairman Charles A. Gargano said, “Over the last several years Lower Manhattan has grown as a cultural center of the city. The Museum of Jewish Heritage is an institution that has contributed significantly to this development, attracting tens of thousands of tourists, educators and students every year to Lower Manhattan.”

Port Authority Executive Director Joseph J. Seymour said, “A key strategy to the revitalization of Lower Manhattan is supporting programs and institutions that make this part of the city a destination. With the addition of the Morgenthau Wing, the Museum of Jewish Heritage plans to conduct exhibits and programs that, within the next five years, will attract 250,000 visitors per year.”

The museum’s mission is to educate the public about Jewish life in the 20th century – before, during and after the Holocaust – through education and public programs, performances, changing exhibitions, museum tours and special events. The museum’s collection includes photographs, artifacts and original documentary films.

The new Morgenthau Wing contains classrooms, a professional theater, an educational resource center, expanded exhibition galleries and an events hall. The wing was the first new construction in Lower Manhattan after September 11, 2001, and opened in September 2003. The inaugural special exhibition of the Morgenthau Wing, “Ours To Fight For: American Jews in the Second World War,” is now open through August 2004. The Port Authority’s contribution will be used to offset the cost of construction of the new wing.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey operates many of the busiest and most important transportation links in the region. They include John F. Kennedy International, Newark Liberty International, LaGuardia and Teterboro airports; AirTrain JFK and AirTrain Newark; the George Washington Bridge; the Lincoln and Holland tunnels; the three bridges between Staten Island and New Jersey; the PATH (Port Authority Trans-Hudson) rapid-transit rail system; the Downtown Manhattan Heliport; Port Newark; the Elizabeth-Port Authority Marine Terminal; the Howland Hook Marine Terminal on Staten Island; the Brooklyn Piers/Red Hook Container Terminal; and the Port Authority Bus Terminal in midtown Manhattan. The agency also owns the 16-acre World Trade Center site in Lower Manhattan. The Port Authority is financially self-supporting and receives no tax revenue from either state.