May 24th, 2006
With the opening of 7 World Trade Center, Larry Silverstein , often derided as a greedy developer, is now hailed a champion of perseverance and private sector know-how.
“The official opening yesterday of the newly rebuilt 7 World Trade Center is a vivid testament … to the never-ending harm that public officials inflict on New Yorkers,” says en editorial in today’s Post. After lambasting Governor George Pataki, Mayor Michael Bloomberg and other officials for “malfeasance and ineptitude,” the paper concludes, “Hats off to Larry Silverstein for 7 WTC. And for his rock-solid commitment to rebuilding the Ground Zero pit.”
In City Journal, Nicole Gelinas hails 7 World Trade Center as “a stunning piece of work… the first tangible evidence that lower Manhattan will triumph over 9/11. “ Like the Post, she criticizes public officials and then praises the private developer: “Silverstein has replaced with hope the dread that infused lower Manhattan after 9/11. Yet pols and the press condemn him — because he’s in the private, not the public, sector.”
Sunny (Brooklyn) also lauds Silverstein — “the first to come through with any promise down there on the ground” — and likes the building: “The David Childs designed monolith in mirrored glass towers over the gaping hole like a set piece from a Superman movie. “
But in the Times, David Dunlap is less effusive, focusing on 7 World Trade Center’s forlorn neighbor — Fiterman Hall, an office building converted to classroom space for Borough of Manhattan Community College and now mired in bureaucracy, awaiting demolition. As Silverstein, entertainers and other celebrated 7 World Trade Center, Dunlap, writes, “With its shattered walls and missing windows, its emptied floors behind shroudlike nets, the 15-story Fiterman Hall played silent counterpoint — like the unwanted party guest that everyone notices but no one acknowledges.”By Gail Robinson on May 24, 2006, 9:52 am
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