Board Finalizes Actions From April Meeting
The Port Authority Board of Commissioners today finalized a series of agreements with Silverstein Properties that will ensure the timely rebuilding of the World Trade Center site.
The agreements, which resulted from a framework for redevelopment of the World Trade Center site approved by the Board in April, call for the Port Authority to develop Tower 1 and Tower 5, comprising approximately 3.8 million square feet of office space. Silverstein Properties will develop Towers 2, 3 and 4, to be located on the eastern portion of the World Trade Center site along Church Street and comprising approximately 6.2 million square feet of office space.
The agreements also provide for various financial, planning, construction and leasing matters in connection with the redevelopment of the World Trade Center site.
The World Trade Center retail lease will continue to be owned by the Port Authority. Work will continue with development of 490,000 square feet of retail planned for the site.
New York Governor George E. Pataki said, “This is an historic event that details a specific financial plan for this massive rebuilding project, lists deadlines for various milestones and moves us toward a swift completion date. I’m extremely proud of the progress we have made so far, and these agreements will continue to expedite the work. In the upcoming months, we will see steel rising from the base of the Freedom Tower, major excavation for the basement of Towers 2, 3 and 4 and construction of the underground passageways that will link various modes of transportation. This work will serve as a catalyst as we move this redevelopment forward.”
New Jersey Governor Jon S. Corzine said, “This series of agreements culminates hundreds of hours of work and compromise and will serve as a springboard to get this rebuilding project done quickly and efficiently. There’s already been tremendous progress at the site to build the signature memorial, the comprehensive transportation facility and the Freedom Tower, and this agreement will establish clear deadlines and accountability for getting these projects done responsibly so we can ensure the future economic strength of the region.”
Port Authority Chairman Anthony R. Coscia said, “These agreements will provide us with a fiscally responsible road map that will help us expedite the redevelopment of the World Trade Center site. They also will ensure this complex project moves forward without delay.”
Port Authority Vice Chairman Charles A. Gargano said, “The economic strength and vitality of Lower Manhattan and the region hinges on our ability to rebuild this site. We now have a comprehensive plan that outlines the roles of all those responsible for the rebuilding, allowing them to move aggressively forward to build a spectacular memorial, the major office towers and a transportation hub that will interconnect the PATH system, subways and ferries.”
Port Authority Executive Director Kenneth J. Ringler Jr., said, “These agreements will be a driving force in getting this rebuilding project done on time and on budget. It will hold the Port Authority and Silverstein Properties financially accountable for work that each party is required to do, which will ensure the prompt rebuilding of the site.”
Mr. Ringler added that under the agreements, the Port Authority will turn over the sites for Towers 3 and 4 to Silverstein Properties by the end of 2007, and will turn over the site for Tower 2 by mid-2008.
Earlier this week, the Port Authority secured commitments from federal and state agencies to occupy more than 1 million square feet of the Freedom Tower when it opens in 2012.
The Port Authority has agreed to relocate its headquarters to Tower 4 and lease 600,000 square feet in that building at an initial rate of $59 a square foot.
Work already is under way on some major components of the World Trade Center site redevelopment. Excavation for the footings and foundations for the Freedom Tower began in April, and steel will be erected for that tower beginning in January 2007. A fourth platform for the PATH terminal and a section of the underground passageways for the World Trade Center Transportation Hub are under construction. And work began in August on the footings and foundations for the Memorial.
Earlier this month, designs for Towers 2, 3 and 4 at the World Trade Center site were unveiled by three world-renowned architects.
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 and Bus Station; the Lincoln and Holland tunnels; the three bridges between Staten Island and New Jersey; the PATH (Port Authority Trans-Hudson) rapid-transit system; the Port Authority-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.