Rebuilding Ground Zero

• Views: 1,401

With the current effort mired in politics and bureaucracy, is it time to step back and rethink the Ground Zero rebuilding strategy?

Since al-Qaida demolished the World Trade Center nearly seven years ago, New York’s naked emperors—Governors George Pataki and Eliot Spitzer and architect Daniel Libeskind—have viewed an historic rebuilding challenge as an opportunity to invent a square wheel and then deny for years that it can’t roll. This week, the Port Authority, which runs the site, released a report admitting that little progress had been made there—still more evidence that the government has responded to an external attack with a self-inflicted disaster. But all the dillydallying may provide an unlikely opportunity for Governor David Paterson and World Trade Center developer Larry Silverstein, who should examine an entirely different approach: building new twin towers at Ground Zero.

It may sound crazy to say that we should consider throwing away years’ worth of planning. But we’ve barely moved toward completion since 2002; in fact, last week’s report threw out cost estimates or timetables for rebuilding. “The schedule and cost for each of the public projects on the site face significant delays and cost overruns,” wrote Chris Ward, the new director of the Port Authority, to Paterson last Monday. Further, “at least 15 fundamental issues critical to the overall project” are “not yet … resolved.”

Indeed: all New York has to show for its hoping and waiting is a partial support structure for the Freedom Tower—which, when it’s built, will be a sad white elephant. And all that the state promises today is more waiting: waiting for officials to figure out how a poorly designed, half-billion-dollar memorial can withstand the weight of the trees that are supposed to go on top of it; waiting for them to figure out a workable plan for the fancy, multibillion-dollar, Calatrava-designed transit hub, where inevitable changes will mean more changes and delays to everything else on the site. Can anyone be confident that the eventual results won’t be physical evidence of unimaginable folly?

On 9/11, al-Qaida murdered 2,974 people and destroyed two iconic office towers that dominated New York’s skyline, another lone office tower nearby, and some smaller support buildings. We can’t recover stolen lives. But what would it take to make New York physically whole again, while paying tribute to 9/11’s history and victims? One obvious answer is to build two iconic office towers that dominate New York’s skyline once again, surrounded by some smaller buildings. Notice that the one project that has achieved completion after 9/11—Silverstein’s Seven World Trade Center, the lone office tower near the main site—did so partly because Silverstein realized that al-Qaida’s attack wasn’t a mandate to reinvent the obvious. He simply built a more elegant tower to succeed what al-Qaida had destroyed, modernized for the twenty-first century in terms of safety and aesthetics and placed in a superior setting.

New York could take a similar approach with the rest of the site.

Also see

UPDATE at 7/7/08 11:11:22 am:

Lawhawk has been covering the politics of the Ground Zero mess for some time. If you want the down and dirty details, start at the top and read downwards.

Jump to top

Create a PageThis is the LGF Pages posting bookmarklet. To use it, drag this button to your browser's bookmark bar, and title it 'LGF Pages' (or whatever you like). Then browse to a site you want to post, select some text on the page to use for a quote, click the bookmarklet, and the Pages posting window will appear with the title, text, and any embedded video or audio files already filled in, ready to go.
Or... you can just click this button to open the Pages posting window right away.
Last updated: 2016-01-01 10:29 am PST
LGF User's Guide RSS Feeds

Help support Little Green Footballs!

Subscribe now for ad-free access!Register and sign in to a free LGF account before subscribing, and your ad-free access will be automatically enabled.

Recent PagesClick to refresh
• Eumir Deodato - Rhapsody in Blue• 1973 LP •Great funky cover of this Gershwin classic. From Deodato 2 CTI LP, another classic album.
Thanos
2 hours, 11 minutes ago
Views: 54 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 1 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Likes: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
David Crosby - Behind the Scenes of Lighthouse Behind the scenes of David Crosby's new record "Lighthouse". Lighthouse is available for pre-order on CD and Vinyl now, and will be available October 21st worldwide. Pre-order digital: smarturl.itPre-order physical CD: bit.lyPre-order vinyl: bit.lyPre-order Amazon: smarturl.it Produced by Michael ...
Thanos
2 hours, 17 minutes ago
Views: 69 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 1 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Likes: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Eva Atmatzidou - Rondat - Acoustic Guitar Music downloads and Guitar Tabs available at: candyrat.com itunes: itunes.apple.comApple Music: itun.esAmazon: amzn.com Composed and performed by Eva Atmatzidou.Recorded by Vangelis Karapetros (Studio Puzzle).Filmed by Eleftheria Anthi. Visit Eva Atmatzidou at : Website: atmatzidou.grFacebook profile: el-gr.facebook.comFacebook page: facebook.com ...
Thanos
2 hours, 21 minutes ago
Views: 53 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 1 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Likes: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Live Corpse Flower Cam at NYBGA corpe flower is set to bloom....uh, sometime... and here is the live feed. Quite the rarity. Quite the aroma. Watch. Don't blink.
nines09
6 hours, 12 minutes ago
Views: 83 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 1
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Likes: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Dark Patterns: User Interfaces Designed to Trick PeopleThe ugly ethics of modern UI designs - where black hats are expected. Presented by Harry Brignull at the UX Brighton Conference. 90percentofeverything.com
Thanos
8 hours, 11 minutes ago
Views: 155 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 2 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Likes: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
DNA Study Reveals the One and Only Wolf Species in North America The first large study of North American wolf genomes has found that there is only one species on the continent: the gray wolf. Two other purported species, the Eastern wolf and the red wolf, are mixes of gray wolf ...
Thanos
12 hours, 25 minutes ago
Views: 128 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 1 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Likes: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Photographer Sues Getty Images for Selling Photos She Donated to Public A well-known American photographer has now sued Getty Images and other related companies—she claims they have been wrongly been selling copyright license for over 18,000 of her photos that she had already donated to the public for free, via ...
Thanos
12 hours, 31 minutes ago
Views: 225 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 29 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 1
Likes: 2
Comments: 1
: 4
Odalis Sharp, Kansas Mom Whose Kids Sang at Oregon Standoff, Loses Custody This woman uses her children as props for her wingnut theater. Odalis Sharp’s children had detailed to the Shawnee County District Court judge how their mother had beaten them, yelled at them and called them names. They talked about ...
Thanos
13 hours, 10 minutes ago
Views: 170 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 2
Tweets: 2 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Likes: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Linux Kernel 4.7 Released Linus Torvalds has been hard at work on an update to the Linux kernel, and now version 4.7 has been officially released. Review: 6 machine learning clouds Amazon, Microsoft, Databricks, Google, HPE, and IBM machine learning toolkits run the ...
Thanos
1 day, 2 hours ago
Views: 167 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 1 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Likes: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Unified Patents Files Legal Challenges Against Top Three Patent Trolls of 2016 The three biggest patent trolls of this year will all soon face new legal challenges to their most valuable "inventions." Unified Patents, a company that focuses on invalidating patents through the use of the inter partes review (IPR) process, ...
Thanos
1 day, 2 hours ago
Views: 178 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 1 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Likes: 0
Comments: 0
: 0