Rebuilding Ground Zero

• Views: 1,597

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 Tweet

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
No, My Right to Abortion Did Not Cost Hillary the Election Yesterday, New York Times op-ed contributor and religious professor Thomas Groome popped up as the latest in a long line of bros getting it wrong at our newspaper of record about what cost Hillary the election. His take? Trump ...
Birth Control Works
11 minutes ago
Views: 31 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
The Fred Rogers Company Statement Regarding Federal Funding for Public Broadcasting For more than two generations of Americans, The Fred Rogers Company has partnered with CPB and PBS to share what Fred Rogers called an “expression of care” for children and families through broadcast and digital media as well as ...
Birth Control Works
30 minutes ago
Views: 57 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
What’s Missing in Our Coverage of South Sudan’s Civil War In South Sudan, a civil war has now entered its fourth year of tearing open ethnic divisions and displacing millions. Since its onset in 2013, the conflict has threatened to pave a path to genocide and has led to ...
Birth Control Works
2 hours, 7 minutes ago
Views: 69 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Faux-Science- -Inside the Academic Journal That Corporations Love - Pacific Standard A recent lawsuit against Monsanto offers a clear and troubling view into industry strategies that warp research for corporate gain. In a lawsuit regarding the possible carcinogenicity of the pesticide Roundup, plaintiffs’ lawyers suing Monsanto charge the company with ...
Birth Control Works
2 hours, 12 minutes ago
Views: 75 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 1
Comments: 0
: 1
Cowboy Cookies Recipe - NYT Cooking Ingredients 3 cups all-purpose flour 1 tablespoon baking powder 1 tablespoon baking soda 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon salt 1 ½ cups (3 sticks) butter, at room temperature 1 ½ cups granulated sugar 1 ½ cups packed light-brown ...
The Vicious Babushka
6 hours, 32 minutes ago
Views: 91 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Foreigners Behind California Breakup Effortssalon.com Two Brexit British operators hired to promote Cali-Divorce, Russia behind efforts on both Left and Right to break apart California. This is consistent with higher ups in the Russian Government and Military publicly stating their desire to break apart ...
Rocky-in-Connecticut
6 hours, 56 minutes ago
Views: 69 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Timothy Caughman’s Murder Was a Lynching in Trump’s America. Just another day in Trumpmerica. The first thread that binds this killing to past lynchings is Jackson’s motivation. The self-proclaimed white supremacist told police that he hated black men in particular for their relationships with white women, a harkening ...
Tarkloon
2 days, 1 hour ago
Views: 372 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 1 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
OneRepublic - A.I. (Audio) Ft. Peter GabrielGet OneRepublic’s new album ‘Oh My My,’ featuring ‘Kids,' 'Wherever I Go' and 'Let’s Hurt Tonight:’ smarturl.itListen to the Best of OneRepublic on Spotify: smarturl.it Music video by OneRepublic performing A.I.. (C) 2016 Mosley Music/Interscope Records vevo.ly
Tarkloon
2 days, 1 hour ago
Views: 259 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
While Gorsuch Was Testifying, the Supreme Court Unanimously Said He Was Wrong About 40 minutes after Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch began his second day of testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, all eight of the justices he hopes to join said a major disability decision Gorsuch wrote in 2008 was ...
Birth Control Works
3 days, 13 hours ago
Views: 388 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 2
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Black & Missing in America - a Short Film Published on May 7, 2015 From OSCAR® and 16-time EMMY award-winning producer Arnold Shapiro and Director/Producer Marlene McCurtis - a short film that highlights the work of the Black and Missing Foundation, and their quest to provide a voice ...
Birth Control Works
3 days, 13 hours ago
Views: 363 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0