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Citizens Union

Rebuilding NYC

A Good Work in Progress

The recently released Freedom Tower is a well thought out design, and a lot of issues have been addressed. That said, there are a few things that still need to be developed. Given the early phase of design the building is in, there will be plenty of chances to make these improvements.

There are a lot of things about this building that I like. The idea of creating an open space with cables that resemble the Brooklyn Bridge is a good one, the building relates to the street grid in a way that makes sense, and the glass wall is going to have a texture that will pick up light differently throughout the day, which will mean that the look of the building will vary at different times. One of the clearest messages is that people want a new icon to replace the twin towers, and I think this will do that. At 1,776 feet tall, you’re going to see it from everywhere.

This building is tall enough to be graceful. The problem with modern office buildings is that you need a large floor size, which makes it hard to design an elegant skyscraper. In general, the tenants for “class A” office buildings want a 30,000 – 40,000 square foot floor plate, which results in buildings, even if they’re 40 or 50 stories, that look short and squat. They’re not as graceful as the Chrysler Building or the Empire State Building, which have much smaller floor plates.

The most ambitious aspect of the building is the area containing wind turbines in an open-air frame made of cables. Would you normally build a space like that for wind turbines? I don’t think so. But if you have the space, the idea of putting wind turbines in a place like that is a good one. Technically, it’s not a gamble; cable structures are a proven technology, and wind turbines are a proven technology.

I and many others feel the need to set an example by building a sustainable or green building. The wind turbines provide 20 percent of the buildings energy at peak times, and even more at night. As a symbolic statement about the need to reduce our dependency on oil, it is strong. It is also unusual to have a large section of a building that is basically empty. I think there’s a certain poetry in that. It’s an office building, but there’s also a void in the building that will remind us what we’ve lost.

The design isn’t perfect. I think that the asymmetrical spire on the top isn’t very well integrated into the rest of the building design. I’ve heard David Childs talk about an artist redesigning it, and I think it can be fixed and resolved. But right now it is a weak point.

There are also questions that have not yet been addressed. No one has talked much about the building at street level: What does it look like from the street? How are the entrances arranged? What does it feel like to walk by it? It’s not that I think these elements aren’t going to be good, it’s just that we don’t know.

It is not unusual at this stage of design for there to still be concerns that have not been addressed. In architecture, you typically start at the large scale and work down. There’s a long way to go, meaning that there is plenty of time to answer these unanswered questions. However, the schedule is being compressed, for political reasons, to have the design ready for the cornerstone to be laid by the third anniversary. That doesn’t leave a lot of time.

Mark Ginsberg is the President of the New York Chapter of the American Institute of Architects

Links To Other Tributes and Remembrances

Online there are a number of sites with information about other projects and organizations devoted to remember 9/11, from memorial quilts to comic books. Find out more about these tributes below.

Memorials Around The World
This online montage of photos shows the impromptu memorials created in countries all over the world after September 11.

Here Is New York
An online collection featuring donated photographs from a Soho gallery

NYC Diary
Metropolis Magazine chronicles impromptu memorials around New York City in this photoessay

The Memorial Quilt
An idea for a giant quilt made of photo image quilt blocks for each and every life lost on September 11th at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and on Flight 93.

September's Mission: Remembering The Children
A short slideshow of drawings and poetry reacting to September 11

Heroes by Marvel Comics
A comic book commemorating the heroes and the victims of September 11

Another comic book reflection on September 11, featuring artists and writers from DC Comics, Chaos! Comics, Dark Horse Comics, and Image Comics. Includes a gallery and an e-comic

The Sonic Memorial Project
This public radio project collected sounds that "capture the life and history" of the World Trade Center.

The Memorial Jury

One is officially a genius; two have already been dismissed as political hacks. One designed the new Brooklyn Library for the Visual and Performing Arts; another was president of the New York Public Library. One is a famous designer, another is responsible for Jeff Koons' flowering puppy in Rockefeller Center.

On April 10, the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation named the 13 people who will judge the competition for the 9/11 memorial. They include well-known artists, academics and architects, as well as a lower Manhattan resident and the wife of a 9/11 victim. David Rockefeller, who initiated the development of the original Twin Towers, will be the 14th member, an honorary member who will not vote.

The governor and mayor each appointed one representative, and the New York Post immediately criticized both political appointees for not having the arts background necessary to choose the memorial.

These 13 people will determine the future of the memorial largely on their own. There will be a public hearing about the memorial on May 28, before any of the designs have been submitted, [see timeline, right] and jury members will meet with interested groups, such as victims family members, throughout the competition to get input on their priorities for the memorial. But all decisions will be up to the jury.

Memorial Timeline

April 28, 2003
The competition will officially begin on April 28, when anyone 18 or older may register to submit a design for the memorial at www.wtcsitememorial.org.

May 28
There will be a public forum on the memorial, held at the Borough of Manhattan Community College's TriBeCa Performing Arts Center.

May 29
Registration, in which each applicant gets a number so that the first stage of the competition will be anonymous, will continue until May 29.

June 9 - 30
Only those who have registered will be able to submit designs, from June 9 to June 30.

The members of the jury will spend late summer evaluating all of the submissions, and will select five finalists in mid-September. The finalists will then get a stipend to refine their design and build a model.

There will be a public exhibition of the finalists before the jury decides on a single design in late October or early November.

The jurors are (listed alphabetically):

Paula Grant Berry
Paula Grant Berry's husband David was killed in the south tower of the World Trade Center on September 11. A member of the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation's Families Advisory Council, Grant Berry was one of four family members who traveled with development corporation members on a five-day tour of memorials around the United States. Grant Berry, who lives in Park Slope, also was a member of the committee that drafted guidelines for the memorial.

"I will work my hardest to ensure that the memorial helps us all find the peace and meaning we are seeking," Grant Berry said in a statement after her appointment.

Susan Freedman
Susan Freedman is president of the Public Art Fund , which coordinates projects like the current installation of art in City Hall Park and Jeff Koons' flowering puppy in Rockefeller Center in 2000. She is a board member at the Museum of Modern Art, the Municipal Art Society, and others, and worked for the city's Arts Commission under Ed Koch.

Vartan Gregorian, Ph.D.
Vartan Gregorian is president of the Carnegie Corporation of New York, and was Brown University's sixteenth president. From 1981 to 1989, he was president of the New York Public Library.

"New York is full of memorials to democracy, but this will be something much more powerful because it will commemorate the victims and celebrates the resiliency and will of all New Yorkers," Gregorian said in a statement.

Patricia Harris
Mayor Michael Bloomberg appointed Patricia Harris, his deputy mayor for administration, to the jury. She managed Bloomberg LP's corporate communications department before becoming deputy mayor. During the Koch administration, Harris was executive director of the city's Art Commission.

Maya Lin
When she was 21, Maya Lin created the winning design for the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington as an assignment for an undergraduate architecture class at Yale. At first, veterans groups did not support Lin's design, calling it a "black gash of shame" in a New York Times editorial. Eventually, a sculpture of three servicemen was added as a compromise near Lin's wall. Lin has said that the year she spent overseeing the development of the memorial in Washington was "beyond miserable." Her design has come to be recognized as one of the most moving monuments in the world.

Many had hoped that Lin herself would enter the 9/11 memorial competition, but by taking a place in the jury, she has withdrawn from competing. "I have fought very, very hard to get past being known as the Monument Maker," Lin told the New Yorker last summer. "I hope that my experience with memorials can help in the process to find a powerful and moving Memorial and can truly help people come to terms with such a painful and traumatic time in our lives," Lin said in a statement after her appointment.

Michael McKeon
Governor George Pataki chose Michael McKeon, his former communications director, as his representative on the jury. Family members and firefighters have criticized McKeon's appointment, saying that a person who represents the victims should be put on the jury instead.

"I was down at Ground Zero every day with the governor," McKeon told the New York Post . "I attended all the briefings with the governor. I was involved in the planning of the first anniversary ceremony. I've been actively involved in a whole range of issues on lower Manhattan for a long time."

Julie Menin
Lower Manhattan resident Julie Menin founded Wall Street Rising , a non-profit organization working to revitalize lower Manhattan, in October 2001. Menin owns Vine Restaurant in the financial district, and worked as an attorney for Colgate-Palmolive before founding Wall Street Rising.

Last spring, Menin's organization created a public art display in lower Manhattan called Art Downtown, with hundreds of works, including art by Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol and Louise Bourgeois, displayed in historic buildings.

"Whatever form the memorial ultimately takes, it must honor those who died on September 11th, it must be spiritually uplifting and architecturally memorable. It must serve as an instrument of healing for the families, the city and our nation. There is no greater challenge before us," Menin said.

Enrique Norten
A prominent Mexican architect, Enrique Norten beat out World Trade Center site finalist Rafael Vinoly in the 2002 competition for the Brooklyn Library for the Visual and Performing Arts. The Times architecture critic Herbert Muschamp has called Norten's design for the Brooklyn Library, "New York's first full-fledged masterwork for the information age."

"All of us are living in a unique historical moment, and are at a turning point in the history of western civilization. This Memorial is about both pain and loss, but also, about optimism and hope for the future," Norten said.

Martin Puryear
Martin Puryear , a sculptor, won the MacArthur Foundation's genius grant in 1989. Puryear works mainly with wood and metal, and has created works for the Walker Arts Center sculpture garden in Minneapolis, MN, and for the Getty Center in Los Angeles.

Nancy Rosen
An expert on public art, Nancy Rosen has given grants for artwork in public places for the National Endowment for the Arts and served as an adviser for the New York State Council on the Arts. She has worked with the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington D.C. and with a public art program in Battery Park City.

Lowery Stokes Sims, Ph.D.
Lowery Stokes Sims was a curator at the Metropolitan Museum of Art for more than 20 years, and in 2000 became director of the Studio Museum in Harlem . Sims has been a juror for exhibitions at the Queens Museum, New Museum of Contemporary Art, the Pratt Institute and other institutions. Her father, John J. Sims Sr., worked for the Port Authority.

"I have fond memories of my first visit to the two towers as their construction was being completed. I know that we will find the right project that will serve as a fitting memorial to the brave individuals who died in the line of duty as public servants, employees, co-workers, parents, children, siblings, friends and neighbors," Sims said.

Michael Van Valkenburgh
New York City landscape artist Michael Van Valkenburgh teaches at the Harvard Graduate School of Design. He has been a member of many other memorial juries.

"Living in New York after the September 11 attack gave me a renewed faith in people and the power of their spirit and will to live. For me, the memorial is a gift to the future -- for us and something for the next generations of New Yorkers. The memorial will afford us an opportunity to remember the World Trade Center attack and to honor those who lost their lives," Van Valkenburgh said.

James Young, Ph.D.
James Young, a professor at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst's Judaic and Near Eastern Studies department, was a member of the commission that selected the design for the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe in Berlin. The process to select the Berlin memorial spanned nearly a decade, with one design being selected in 1995 and then scrapped because so many disliked it. A new selection commission was created -- with Young as the only Jewish member -- in 1997. The group launched a new competition that year, and selected a design by Peter Eisenman and sculptor Richard Serra that creates a field of pillars on sloping ground. It is slated to open in 2004.

Young has said about Ground Zero: "If they hate our buildings, let's rebuild them here; if they hate our prosperity, let's prosper here; if they hate our culture, let's celebrate here; if they hate our lives, let's live them here."

The Top Rebuilding Stories of 2003

The Freedom Tower

On December 19, Governor George Pataki announced plans for a 1,776 foot tall Freedom Tower to rise at Ground Zero.

The design capped months of leaks to the press and battle between architects that began last Feburary when the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation selected Daniel Libeskind's design to guide the rebuilding at Ground Zero. It called for the 1,776 foot tower, the tallest building in the world, and a space for a memorial to be sunk 30 feet below street level, exposing a section of the "slurry wall" that kept the Hudson from flooding the area after the collapse of the Twin Towers. But Larry Silverstein, who holds the lease on the site, criticized the plan, saying it did not have enough office space and would cost too much to build. He chose his own architect, David Childs, to work with Libeskind on the Freedom Tower. This decision set off a collaboration that quickly turned rocky, with the two men reportedly refusing to talk to one another in the final days before the design for the building was released.

The Memorial Designs

In November, after months of secret deliberations, a 13-member jury selected eight designs as finalists in the competition for a Ground Zero memorial. Those chosen from 5,201 entries featured a dizzying array of devices for remembering the dead, including hanging candles, engraved walls, beams of light, waterfalls, prairies, trees and photographs. They have not been accepted warmly by the public. With no design emerging as a clear favorite with the public, the jury is expected to make a selection early in 2004, though it is not certain whether they will select a winner, pick several finalists, or present something that has been altered significantly.

Moving Downtown

New York State and New York City announced plans for a downtown transportation hub that would include easy access to nine subway lines and the PATH train. Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava, known for designing train stations in Europe, will design the $2 billion transportation terminal at the World Trade Center site.

Back in Business

Gradually services that were knocked out in the September 11 attacks are being restored to the area. For example, in November, the World Trade Center PATH station reopened. But the new $23 million station is only temporary: Eventually, PATH service will be incorporated into the planned downtown transportation hub. And Con Edison began rebuilding two power substations destroyed on 9/11. It expects them to begin providing electricity to lower Manhattan by next summer.

Health Issues

Concerns over air quality at Ground Zero immediately following the attacks heightened in August when the inspector general of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issued a report saying that the White House influenced the agency to tell New Yorkers that the air at Ground Zero was fine -- even before the agency had fully monitored the air quality. Soon after, the city health department announced plans for a comprehensive survey to follow the health of those people most directly exposed to the World Trade Center collapse and subsequent clean-up efforts. City health officials say that the registry was not launched in response to the recent accusations

Two Years After

New York marked the second anniversary of the attacks on the World Trade Center with a fairly low-key observance aimed primarily at the families of those who died. At the site, children related to the victims read all 2,792 names.

Latest Transportation News

Gotham Gazette Articles

Ground Zero Transportation Hub (01/2004)
The plan for the permanent PATH station at Ground Zero, made public in January 2004, is an oval-shaped structure of glass and steel with two "wings" rising from its spine. The retractable glass roof of the building allows daylight to reach the train tracks 60 feet below street level.

Transportation And Lower Manhattan: Where Do We Go From Here? (05/2003)
In 2015, if all goes as planned, people will be able to move easily to and from lower Manhattan by commuter trains and subways, and even take a one-seat ride to the airport. This vision of the future contrasts sharply with the realities of transportation in lower Manhattan today. Jeffrey Zupan explains what is planned and the decisions that must be made.

The (Proposed) Trains To The Planes (01/2003)
New York City is one of the few premier international cities without direct rail access to its airports. Mayor Bloomberg wants to fix that.

Save West Street (10/28/02)
"Downtown can be great again, without all the digging," argues Battery Park City resident John Dellaportas, who created a coalition opposing the plan to turn West Street into a tunnel. Dellaportas explains why transportation advocates, environmentalists, parents of schoolchildren and Battery Park City residents have come out against the tunnel plan.

Does Transportation Really Deserve Top Billing Downtown? (07/04/02)
If you ask any public official or civic leader what the top priority is for planning the city's rebuilding after Sept. 11, they will probably say transportation. Improving transportation downtown is a major part of the recommendations of almost every civic group dealing with the effects of Sept. 11, from the Civic Alliance to the principles of the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation itself. However, spending a large portion of the money that the federal government gave the city after Sept. 11 on transportation improvements may not be the best idea for New York City.

Ground Zero Artifacts to be Preserved in Transit Hub - Aug 27, 2004
A 66-foot-long, travertine-paved remnant of the original World Trade Center concourse - still used every day by hundreds of commuters walking between the Eighth Avenue subway platforms and the PATH station - will be permanently preserved as part of the new trade center transportation hub, the Port Authority said yesterday. (New York Times)

Port Authority Looks for JFK Ferry Link - Aug 27, 2004
The Port Authority invited ferry operators Thursday to submit proposals for boat connections between Lower Manhattan and Kennedy International Airport. (Newsday)

Verizon Receives $77 Million in 9/11 Funds - Aug 8, 2004
Verizon Communications Inc. received another $77 million in federal funds earmarked for restoring utilities and rebuilding infrastructure damaged in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, according to a regulatory filing Friday. (Newsday)

Metropolitan Transportation Authority Earmarks $495 Million for Security - Aug 3, 2004
The MTA has earmarked $495 million toward "enhancing security readiness" in an effort to protect the region's vast rail network, officials said yesterday. (New York Post)

Feds Plan to Extend Environmental Testing - Aug 1, 2004
Community members and scientific experts applauded an Environmental Protection Agency proposal to expand testing for 9/11 contaminants to residences and workplaces north of Canal St. (Downtown Express)

White House to Direct $2 Billion to Rail Link - Jul 30, 2004
The White House has agreed to let New York use $2 billion in Sept. 11 aid to help build a $6 billion rail link connecting the World Trade Center site to the Long Island Rail Road and Kennedy International Airport. (New York Times)

Vets Protest Iraq War at Ground Zero - Jul 25, 2004
Flashing peace symbols and yelling “Congress has spoken, the people have spoken: No more Vietnams,” eight members of Veterans for Peace came to the World Trade Center Site for about 20 minutes Tuesday to protest the war in Iraq. None of them made any mention of Sept. 11 during the protest. (Downtown Express)

Latest Memorial news

Memorial Winner:
Reflecting Absence

"Reflecting Absence," the design by Michael Arad that features two pools of water with pine trees and a paved stone field, has been chosen to be the memorial on the site of the World Trade Center.

The Eight Memorials
On November 19, 2003, the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation unveiled the eight finalist designs in the World Trade Center memorial competition. The designs were selected by a 13-member jury. Each design must recognize the twin tower footprints and each individual killed in the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 and February 26, 1993. The designs are on display at the Winter Garden and the jury will select the final design.

The eight finalists are:

  • Votives in Suspension (by Norman Lee and Michael Lewis)
  • Lower Waters (by Bradley Campbell and Matthias Neumann)
  • Passages of Light: The Memorial Cloud (by bbc art + architecture)
  • Suspending Memory (by Joseph Karadin with Hsin-Yi Wu)
  • Garden of Lights (by Pierre David with Sean Corriel, Jessica Kmetovic)
  • Reflecting Absence: A Memorial at the World Trade Center Site (by Michael Arad)
  • Dual Memory (by Brian Stawn and Karla Sierralta)
  • Inversion of Light (Toshio Sasaki)

The jury members are:

  • Paula Grant Berry -- A Brooklyn resident whose husband was killed on 9/11.
  • Susan Freedman -- President of the Public Art Fund, and a board member a the Museum of Modern Art, the Municipal Arts Society, and others.
  • Vartan Gregorian, Ph.D -- President of Carnegie Corporation of New York.
  • Patricia Harris -- Mayor Michael Bloomberg's deputy mayor for administration.
  • Maya Lin -- Designer of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington DC.
  • Michael McKeon -- Governor George Pataki's former communications director.
  • Julie Menin -- Owner of Vine Restaurant in lower Manhattan, and founder of Wall Street Rising.
  • Enrique Norten -- A Mexican architect who won a 2002 design competition for the Brooklyn Library for the Visual and Performing Arts.
  • Matrin Puryear -- A scupltor and a former winner of the MacArthur Foundation's genius grant.
  • Nancy Rosen -- An expert on public art.
  • Lowery Stokes Sims, Ph.D -- Director of Studio Museum in Harlem and former curator at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
  • Michael Van Valkenburgh -- New York City landscape architect who also teaches at Harvard Graduate School of Design.
  • James Young, Ph.D -- Professor at University of Massachusetts, Amhert's Judaic and Near Eastern Studies department.

Memorial Competition Website
The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation's official website for the memorial competition.

Memorial Mission Statement
Family members of 9/11 victims worked with the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation to develop a mission statement about the memorial for September 11. The mission statement was incorporated into guidelines for a memorial competition, which began in April, 2003.

Tributes and Remembrances
Immediately after the morning of September 11, New Yorkers and others around the world began commemorating the September 11 victims. Online, there are a number of sites with information about other projects and organizations devoted to remember 9/11, from memorial quilts to comic books.

Ideas For Memorials Downtown
Not long after the attacks, architects, designers and planners began developing ideas for memorializing the victims of September 11. See some of the ideas that they proposed.


Gotham Gazette Articles

My Memorial

Mike Kuo, the head of Imagine New York, writes about his group's report -- and how working on it affected him personally.

Transcript of Live Chat
Gotham Gazette held an online memorial chat with architectural experts Rick Bell and Fred Bernstein. Read a transcript here.

The Eight Memorial Designs
Most incorporate water, all use light, and together they are evoking strong reaction. A look at details of the designs, the criticism, the process of choosing them, and what is likely to happen now.

The Pentagon Memorial's Lessons for New York
By the time New York City's September 11 memorial jury narrows the Ground Zero memorial competition down to five finalists, the Pentagon will have already broken ground on its memorial - selected way back in March - for the 184 victims who died there on 9/11. What can New York learn from the other 9/11 memorial?

A Resident's Hopes for the Memorial
As the 9/11 memorial jury prepares to sort through design applications, lower Manhattan resident Tim Lannan writes that he wants the chosen memorial to convey the special sense of community he felt downtown after the attacks.

Competing to Design the 9/11 Memorial
Designers competing in the international 9/11 memorial competition were given until June 30 to figure out how to best memorialize September 11 and interpret the competition's guidelines, even as those closest to the tragedy disagreed on the details and concepts for the memorial.

Perspectives on the Memorial
Anthony Gardner, whose brother Harvey Joseph Gardner III was killed on 9/11, argues that a bus garage and commercial stores do not have a place in the sacred space where most of the remains of those murdered on September 11 were found.

Perspectives on the Memorial
In the first in a series of essays about the 9/11 memorial, retired firefighter John Finucane says that whatever design is chosen should list the names of the rescue workers together, with their name, rank, serial number and company.

The Memorial Hearing
At the May 28 hearing about the 9/11 memorial, Chris Ganci, whose father, Fire Department Chief Pete Ganci, died on September 11, urged the jury to chose a design that shows that rescue workers "willingly gave their lives to help other people." Julie Boryczewski said that the design should show what happened on 9/11 "honestly and equally." Read transcripts of their testimonies, and others, from the hearing.

The Memorial Jury
On April 10, the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation selected the jury that will select a design for the 9/11 memorial. A look at the 13 jury members, and a timeline for the competition.

Transcript of Live Chat with Anita Contini (08/21/02)
Read a transcriptof our live online chat with Anita Contini, director of memorial, cultural and civic programs for the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation. Find out what she said during our conversation as Contini fielded questions about the process of creating the memorial.

Looking At Memorials (08/19/02)
Anita Contini, who began her job as the person in charge of the memorial at Ground Zero this month, has a trip planned to help her figure out what her next steps should be. Her visits to the Oklahoma City memorial, the Vietnam memorial, a memorial to the victims of the atomic bomb in Hiroshima, Japan and others may have important lessons for Ground Zero.

Rebuild The Towers vs. All Memorial (08/05/02)
Preliminary results from Gotham Gazette's Ground Zero Planner show that over half the entries call for rebuilding the towers as they were, while a fifth insist all 16 acres should be a memorial. Also: what the experts make of these passionately-held, mutually exclusive views, and whether a real consensus can be reached.

Monica's Mission (06/29/02)
September's Mission founder Monica Iken describes her ideas for a memorialdowntown. She urges planners to make sure that everything built on the site reflects what happened on Sept. 11, saying, "the final resting place of our lost souls is not confined to the footprints of the towers."

Six Months Later (03/11/02)
The city has made an amazing recovery in the six months since the terrorist attacks. Ground Zero will soon be cleared of rubble. Subways, schools, and businesses have reopened. And two temporary memorials will be unveiled this week. But as New York moves to the next phase of rebuilding there are many unanswered questions about what to build, who is in charge, and how it will be funded. Gotham Gazette takes a lookat the status of recovery and rebuilding, how far we have come and where we are headed.

Two Views on How to Rebuild (11/26/01)
1. Make it fast, not fancy, Dick Netzer says, and in midtown, not downtown.

2. We must pause and reflect, says Nancy Biberman, before trying to build anything on the hallowed ground.

A History Of Crisis And Recovery (10/01/01)
In the very first week after the attack, the mayor looked to history for comfort and instruction in how New Yorkers could respond. The historical event he focused on was the blitz of London during World War II. But, as New Yorkers can discover in hundreds of history-related events starting this week, there is comfort and instruction as well in the long series of crises and recoveries that make up the history of New York City.


Staten Island Memorial Unveiled - Sep 12, 2004

Rounding out a long and intense day of events marking the third anniversary of 9/11, a memorial to Staten Island victims was dedicated on the borough's waterfront at the ferry terminal across the harbor from the Trade Center site. (NY1)

Fundraising For Memorial Has Yet to Begin - Sep 11, 2004
Eight months after the World Trade Center memorial design was unveiled, Gov. Pataki and Mayor Bloomberg have yet to find a prominent person willing to lead the foundation that's raising the money to build it. (New York Daily News)

Website Offers "Living Memorial" To 9/11 Victims, Families - Sep 9, 2004
A high-profile 9/11 organization launched an Internet-based memorial yesterday that will serve as a "portal of reflection, remembrance, interaction, education and scholarly research" about the terrorist attacks. (New York Daily News)

Memorial Planned For Flight 93 Victims - Sep 9, 2004
The 40 innocent passengers and crew who died on hijacked United Airlines Flight 93 should be honored because they played a role in the "only victory" during the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, said the father of one of the victims. That's what planners hope people remember as they submit designs for a crash site memorial in a national competition announced Wednesday. (Newsday )

Frederic Schwartz: Designer of Two 9/11 Memorials - Sep 9, 2004
Frederic Schwartz is standing on a peninsula at Liberty State Park where ground is to be broken tomorrow for the 9/11 memorial he has designed for New Jersey, only three-and-a-half hours after ground is broken in Westchester County for the 9/11 memorial he has designed there. But for a moment, his sad eyes are not focused on the empty sky across the Hudson River where the World Trade Center is supposed to be. (New York Times )

Construction on Staten Island's 9/11 Memorial Begins - Aug 17, 2004
Workers started installing a memorial to the September 11 victims on Staten Island Monday. (NY1)

Cantor Fitzgerald Finds New Home in Midtown - Jul 27, 2004
Nearly three years after 658 Cantor Fitgerald employees were killed in the attack on the World Trade Center, the stock and bond trading company has found a new home five miles from ground zero, on the East Side of Manhattan. Cantor signed a lease last week to move into space now occupied by Bloomberg L.P., the business information company founded by Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, at Park Avenue and 59th Street, where Cantor plans to erect a monument to the co-workers who died in the Sept. 11 attack. (New York Times)

Cultural Complex At Ground Zero

When museums, theaters, and other arts institutions were offered the chance to move to Ground Zero, they jumped at it. Between June and September, 113 organizations responded to the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation's general request for proposals for the cultural spaces on the. A report (in pdf format) released this week gives a clearer picture of the three cultural spaces for the site -- an underground museum, a performing arts center, and one or two 'cultural buildings.' It also narrows down the list of institutions it is considering to run these spaces.

Just as these organizations are eager to move downtown, New Yorkers are eager to have them. In a survey last summer, 69 percent of people "strongly agreed" that building cultural facilities at Ground Zero was important. The governor and the mayor have voiced their support for the creation of a cultural district downtown. Even developer Larry Silverstein, who has long been accused of caring for nothing but the sanctity of office space, has said he would like to see an arts center at Ground Zero.

Using culture to revitalize Lower Manhattan has been around since long before 9/11. According to Sharon Zukin, author of The Cultures of Cities the business improvement district for Lower Manhattan has been trying to bring cultural institutions downtown for at least fifteen years, following the model of Times Square, where theaters and non-profit arts groups were used to revamp the area.

Zukin claims that this strategy has become common worldwide. "Culture used to be seen as a by-product of wealth," she said. "Now culture is seen as a generator of wealth. And therefore, governments, businesses and various organizations pursue culture in a much more determined and ambitious way that they have in previous generations."

The report released this week named the fifteen institutions that the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation is considering for the cultural areas at Ground Zero, though it did not describe the institutions' proposals for these sites. By April, the agency expects to choose who will fill the three main cultural areas proposed for the site. Each area may be run by a single organization, or several organizations. After that, funding for the buildings and architectural designs will be worked out.

The three cultural sites proposed for Ground Zero are:

The Memorial Center -- an underground museum on the memorial site, sized between 50,000 to 70,000 square feet. Its mission will be to tell the individual stories of the victims of the 1993 and 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center and present the contributions of the rescue, recovery, and relief workers after 9/11. Artifacts from the attacks will be displayed here. Advisory boards comprised of victims' family members and community leaders will work with the public and museum directors, curators, and conservators to develop content.

• The Museum of the City of New York, The New York Historical Society, and the New York State Museum will be discussing developing content for and how to curate this site with the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation.

• Project Rebirth and Sound Portraits Productions/Story Corps. will be speaking with the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation about developing concepts for special events at the memorial center.

Performing Arts Center -- a 100,000 to 200,000 square foot building located due east of the Freedom Tower, on the northwest corner of Fulton and Greenwich Streets. It will house either a single organization operating a large theater program, or several organizations operating theaters of various sizes within the same complex.

• The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation is considering asking the Joyce Theater Company, the New York City Opera, the Signature Theatre Company, the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra and Tribeca Film Institute to operate in this space.

Cultural Buildings -- One or two on the southwest corner of Fulton and Greenwich Streets. Several uses are being considered for these buildings, which will create a total of 200,000 to 250,000 square feet of useable space. Possibilities include a museum focusing on the World Trade Center site, exhibits focused on international culture, educational institutions focusing on children, and a space for civic organizations to facilitate public discussion.

• The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation will be speaking with the Children's Museum Of The Arts, The Drawing Center, The Museum Of Freedom and the New York Hall Of Science about developing this site. The buildings may also offer space to international public programs and educational events from organizations like the 92nd Street Y.

The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation will also be considering institutions not on the 'short list.' To read the full report, which includes a list of all 113 cultural institutions that responded to the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation's call for proposals, click here (in pdf format).

Responses To The Enviromental Impact Statement

Jenna Orkin of 9/11 Environmental Action doesn't think much of what's happening at Ground Zero. "This is a rush job," she said. "The reasons have to do with image and politics."

Patricia Noonan of the Partnership for New York City reached the opposite conclusion, praising the plan for its "balanced approach."

On the stage, officials from the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation sat and listened politely to the two of them, and dozens more -- each required to say their piece in three minutes or less.

The occasion was the public hearing for a 2000-page technical document issued by the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation: The Draft Generic Environmental Impact Statement for the World Trade Center site. Just as in the public hearings in January 2003, anyone who wanted to could sign up to speak. Since then, those who spoke - and those who couldn't make it - have been refining written comments that the corporation will accept until March 15.

Responses were not limited specifically to issues of the environment; the environmental impact statement process is the major remaining chance for the public to respond to the plan for Ground Zero. The cooperation of public and private interests working on the site, the historic significance of the site, and the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation itself were all subject to critique.

Business As Usual -- Sort Of

Environmental impact statements are a required part of any proposed building in the city, and comment periods for these statements present a major opportunity for members of the public to voice concerns or offer suggestions. Writing the statement, holding public hearings, and accepting comments are business as usual for developers.

The Draft Generic Environmental Impact Statement for Ground Zero is different mainly because of its scope. The document is referred to as a generic statement because it discusses buildings that have not yet been designed, and covers a large area that will be built over many years. This will release the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation from having to have a similar process for each building that goes up. Also, since the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation is exempt from the city's land use review process, the environmental impact statement is the only officially required avenue for public response on the Ground Zero project as a whole.

Despite its size, the environmental impact statement process for Ground Zero is proceeding on a tight timeline. The draft statement was made public on January 22, the hearings were held about a month later, and public comments are being accepted for about another month, until March 15.

All of these comments will be incorporated into the final environmental impact statement, according to the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation. Below are excerpts of comments that have been submitted so far:

Keep The Process Moving -- Patricia Noonan
Slow Down -- Caroline Martin
Tell The Whole Story -- Ernest Hutton
Skimming Over Environmental Concerns -- Jenna Orkin
Define the Footprints -- Anthony Gardner
This Is A Collaboration, So Work Together -- Jordan Gruzen
Don't Miss The Opportunity To Build Green
There Is An Alternative - Rebuild The Towers -- Alexander Butziger
Decide What Is Historic In Order To Preserve The Past, Not To Clear The Way For The Future -- Robert Kornfield, Jr.
Don't Bury West Street -- John Dellaportas
Environmental Impact Extends Beyond Ground Zero
--Catherine McVay Hughes
Miscalculating Open Space -- Diane Dreyfus

Keep The Process Going To Keep Businesses Downtown
The business community commends the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation and its partners in the EIS. They have set forth a balanced approach to expedite construction while minimizing the impacts on businesses, residents and workers in Lower Manhattan. A host of major Lower Manhattan businesses will soon be faced with renewing leases; they will be making location decisions within the decade. In order to remain in Lower Manhattan, they must be confident about its future.

If they decide not to stay in Lower Manhattan , there is no guarantee they will stay in the city at all. Once they begin evaluating alternative locations, it is possible that they will choose to locate elsewhere. Some place where rents are lower and labor costs less. Neither Lower Manhattan nor the city at large can afford to let these firms relocate

The business community believes that it is important to expedite the rebuilding process of the commercial sites in order to maintain the commercial character of Lower Manhattan and keep this important business district, which is the third largest CBD in the country.

The same sense of urgency and focus that drove the clean up of the World Trade Center site -- which took 9 months rather than one year and cost $750 million, not the projected $2.5 billion -- must continue to drive the rebuilding process.
-- Patricia Noonan, Partnership for New York City

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Slow Down
In the Catskills an Environmental Impact Statement is being prepared, and due to public pressure the time for comment is being extended an additional two months. I formally request that the public comment period for this draft EIS be extended from the current minimum of 45 days by an additional 2 months e.g. until May 15.

If you have made comments on the Draft EIS, you are entitled to a copy of the Final EIS under NEPA rules - no mention of it only being available electronically, or having to pay for the privilege. I would like to go on record as stating that I want a free hard copy on the day the Final EIS is made available to the public, and I want to be affirmatively informed when that date is, and where I can pick up my copy.
-- Caroline Martin, Family Association of Tribeca East

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Tell The Whole Story
The World Trade Center Draft Generic Environmental Impact Statement before us may fulfill the legal and administrative requirements as set forth in federal, state and city regulations, but its scope is limited to the areas required by environmental law. The Draft Generic Environmental Impact Statement can't and doesn't look at the full planning context of the proposed site plan, nor of that plan's relationship to the many other planned improvements within Lower Manhattan.
-- Ernest Hutton, New York New Visions

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Skimming Over Environmental Concerns This is a rush job. Although the rebuilding of Ground Zero will be one of the largest construction projects in the world, the usual three year EIS process has been condensed to one for reasons that have nothing to do with the environment or public health. Once again, the reasons have to do with image and politics. In this respect as in others, the rebuilding process shows signs of repeating the reckless behavior of the cleanup operation...

The Draft Environment Impact Statement consists in large part of sanguine projections into the future and assurances that where there are problems they'll be handled appropriately "when practical." Who determines what's practical? Who defines it and according to what criteria? During the cleanup it was often found to be impractical to wet down dust during the winter for fear the water would freeze. Is that going to happen again? Will other actions protective of human health be considered impractical because they require too much time or money? Will it be considered impractical to enforce the rules against truck and bus idling? And how will those rules be enforced?
-- Jenna Orkin, Steering committee, 9/11 Environmental Action

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Define the Footprints The Draft Environmental Impact Statement does not define what it means by the term "footprints." Although this has been a matter of discussion for more than two years, LMDC continues to refuse to acknowledge that the "footprints" are the outlines of the Twin Towers perfectly delineated by the remains of the exterior support box-beam columns presently visible at the lowest exposed level of the site-not some mythical void suspended in mid-air.
-- Anthony Gardner, Coalition of 9/11 Families

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This Is A Collaboration, So Work Together
Each part of the plan is being developed by a separate group of design professionals, each working for a different client, whether it be Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, the Port Authority, Metropolitan Transportation Authority, New York State Department Of Transportation, or Silverstein. In examining these plans we have observed a weakness in the continuity between adjacent elements. There also may be a difference of opinion between groups about how these land use and circulation issues should be resolved. This is not surprising since these ideas are now just emerging in physical form and can now be measured and evaluated when seen in the light of the overall master plan. This master plan, broadly conceived by Daniel Libeskind, has had many evolutionary changes since its introduction but still remains the dominant concept. New York New Visions has been supportive of this overriding vision. We encourage Lower Manhattan Development Corporation and the other controlling authorities to work more closely together so that we do not end up with powerfully expressive individual solutions to the parts without the connectivity that makes for an integrated urban fabric.
-- Jordan Gruzen, New York New Visions

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Don't Miss The Opportunity To Build Green
We appreciate the effort that has been made to incorporate guidelines for sustainability. While recognizing that this is a work in progress, it is important to note that what has been proposed is focused primarily on the individual development projects and makes no call for a comprehensive master plan for sustainability. What is needed, as part of the design guidelines and incorporated into the standards established for the Generic Environmental Impact Statement, is a study of the entire site and its environs that sets forth sustainability measures that will be common to all projects -- and allocates responsibility for those measures. While the guidelines presented are at the leading edge of the norm for large-scale developments, they generally do not seize the unprecedented opportunity afforded here to set new benchmarks that will advance state-of-the-art of sustainability practices and technologies. The fact that tenants, the occupants of 80-85 percent of the above-grade floor space, are not mandated to comply with the guidelines suggests business as usual.
-- Ethel Sheffer, New York New Visions, Metro Chapter of American Planning Association

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There Is An Alternative - Rebuild The Towers If you choose to replace the Twin Towers with the Libeskind World Trade Center, the other office towers besides Freedom Tower should be super tall (taller than 1,000 feet) too. After all, we did not lose just one "skyline element" (as you like to call it) on September 11, 2001, but two. How can the two lost Towers be replaced by just one building? - Given the mediocrity of all aspects of the Libeskind plan and its buildings, I am glad that you recognize that "The Proposed Action is not, however, the only option considered by or open to LMDC." The only truly worthwhile way of rebuilding is the Restoration Alternative. The new WTC should conform more to that what was taken from us on September 11, 2001, than to Mr. Libeskind's plan. It is obvious that you do not evaluate the Restoration Alternative fairly, but try to denigrate it as best you can, to whitewash the Proposed Action.
-- Alexander Butziger, World Trade Center Restoration Movement

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Decide What Is Historic In Order To Preserve The Past, Not To Clear The Way For The Future
The risk of having developers perform their own historic assessment is obviously that their historic consultants may act as advocates of the proposed plans rather than impartial experts. This Determination does not attempt to identify the historic resources that exist on the site thoroughly and accurately, or to recognize their integrity and significance. Rather, it appears that the purpose of the Determination is to insure that the redevelopment can proceed without finding any adverse effect, and without the obligation to mitigate any adverse effects.

The World Trade Center is one of the nation's most significant historic sites and it deserves a thorough and legitimate Determination. The failure to produce this would be a grave injustice, and an insult to those who lost their lives in the disaster and those who risked their safety in the aftermath. The historic resources of this site must be evaluated based on their merits, not on tactical considerations for the redevelopment.
-- Robert Kornfield, Jr, Historic Districts Council

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Don't Bury West Street
I believe the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation's three and a half year projected tunnel construction is wildly optimistic. The problem with highway tunnels is that no one knows what they will find underground until they start digging. That is why the Big Dig in Boston, which was originally projected to take only five years, has now been going on for 15 years and counting. Expect similar delays for the West Street tunnel, as anyone who has lived in NYC for any amount of time knows that these projects always run extra long.

Second, whether construction takes three years or 10, the plan to reduce West Street to four lanes during the entire construction period will be economic disaster for Battery Park City. During these years of construction, access to and from Battery Park City will be degraded to a similar extent as it was in the months after 9/11. The gridlock will not just hit West Street. The vehicle traffic will invariable try to find alternative north-south routes, which will spell lots of traffic jams for Greenwich, Broadway and Church as well.
-- John Dellaportas, Save West Street

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Environmental Impact Extends Beyond Ground Zero
Your Generic Draft Environmental Impact Statement needs to adequately address the accumulative impact beyond the immediate WTC site since more was severely damaged on September 11, 2001 and more than that remains to be damaged two and half years later. These large projects listed below must be included in the cumulative construction period analysis since they "represent a change from conditions existing prior to September 11, 2001":

- 130 Liberty Street (Deutsche Bank) "de-construction" and site "re-construct" of contaminated and exposed building which covers two city blocks
- 30 West Broadway (Borough of Manhattan Community College's Fiterman Hall) "de-construction" and site "re-construct" of contaminated and exposed building which covers one city block
- South Ferry Subway Station
- 7 World Trade Center (construction in progress)
- 90 West Street renovation and conversion to residential building (construction in progress)
- Infrastructure Repair which consists of digging up many streets to access cables, pipes, and wires

All these projects combined with your construction phasing has and will have an enormous impact on air quality from the exposed contaminated Deutsche Bank & Fiterman buildings to the truck traffic to construction machinery. These projects will include traffic beyond the estimated 176,000 truckloads calculated from the various tables listed in Appendix J.
-- Catherine McVay Hughes, downtown resident

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Miscalculating Open Space
Let's look at what passes for Open Space...Examining the original World Trade Center Plan you will notice that the side along 9A West Street did not count as open space until after 9/11. But the legend shows us that, now the road shoulder on the other side of 9A is included in the LMDC open space calculations. [The figures that Dreyfus is referring to are DGEIS figures 1.2 and 6.5] I bring this up only to indicate the acres of "open space" can include such unsavory parcels. Essentially, this quality of Open Space is as hospitable as the traffic triangle in Harold Square. Yes, there is a tree and a statue to admire and you could have a cup of coffee or meet a friend there. But would you want to?
-- Diane Dreyfus, M.S Architecture, Urban & Regional Planning

Public Hearings for Ground Zero

Testimonies From The Public Hearings

At the public hearings, people from throughout the metropolitan region testified about the rebuilding downtown. Some criticized the public process, while others reacted to the specific plans.

See what participants said below.

Every three minutes, a new person stood up at the public hearings for the new Ground Zero plans and offered his or her opinion, though rarely about the new plans themselves. The gentleman from the Audubon Society called on the planners to design "bird-friendly buildings." Laurence Russo presented his own plan for the site. Andrew Oliff stood up to say that the only buildings he could accept were the Twin Towers, rebuilt. Sally Regenhard said that the city of New York, not the Port Authority, should have control over Ground Zero.

So it went, every three minutes for four long hours. If there was one thing that absolutely everybody agreed on it was this: these public hearings were done wrong. It was almost as if, some say, officials wanted to be seen listening to public opinion rather than actually having to take the public's opinions into account.

"Three minute sound bites do not allow for substantive input," said Ron Shiffman, director of the Pratt Institute Center for Community and Environmental Development. "It was just structured the wrong way."

Engaging the public
Back in December, Bob Yaro, head of the Civic Alliance to Rebuild Downtown, and other civic leaders had predicted that the hearings, where whoever shows up gets to talk for three minutes while everyone else listens, would be much less productive than the Listening to the City town hall meeting in July, where a demographically diverse group of 5,000 people talked in small groups about specific details of the first six plans. Instead, the recent hearings looked to some like a show of public participation that the development corporation could conveniently dismiss as unfocused and unproductive.

In early January, the Municipal Art Society's project Imagine New York held roundtable discussions about the new plans. 300 participants highlighted important likes and dislikes about the designs, said co-director Holly Leicht. A report summarizing the responses is available online. During the workshop, three plans emerged as favorites: those by Daniel Libeskind, Norman Foster and Peterson/Littenberg.

These three plans were also ranked as favorites by people sending in comments to the development corporation's web site and in a New York Times poll. The top two plans for Gotham Gazette readers are by Foster and United Architects, with Libeskind's design and the THINK team's Sky Park plan tied for third.

Asking the same questions
Times reporter Ed Wyatt covered the first hearing without quoting from a single actual testimony, saying that most who spoke just repeated things that have already been said over and over.

Diane Horning, whose son was killed on September 11, responded to Wyatt's article at the second hearing, saying that people are bringing up the same questions because they haven't yet been addressed. "I suggest then that the LMDC answer those questions and address those problems so that we don't have to be so annoyingly repetitive," said Horning, who belongs to the group WTC Families for a Proper Burial. The group is calling for all of the unknown remains that were brought to the Fresh Kills landfill during the cleanup to be interred as part of the memorial.

While Horning called for assurances about the memorial, Hugh Hardy, from New York New Visions, a coalition of 21 architecture, planning and engineering organizations, suggested that the nine new plans be set aside until the agencies in charge of rebuilding resolve questions about a development strategy for the World Trade Center site. "The schemes represent a quandary. They are hampered without a realistic program and development strategy for the site, caused by a lack of clearly directed leadership," he said at the hearing. New York New Visions has a report evaluating all of the designs, which is available online (PDF format).

Shiffman, from the Pratt Institute, has also advocated for a new development plan. He said that the guidelines for rebuilding given to the architecture teams, which call for building most of the office and retail space that existed before the attacks, don't make sense for lower Manhattan today. "To adopt a 1970's program as the basis for rebuilding as is just as idiotic as rebuilding the towers the way they were," he said.

Testimonies From the 2003 Public Hearing

Reactions to the Plans

Opinions of 300
Holly Leicht, co-director of Imagine New York

The Skyline Is A Symbol Of Hopes And Dreams
Matt, city resident

The Centrality of the Memorial
Norman, lower Manhattan resident

Is This The Right Program? Is This The Right Process?
Jay Allen Zimmerman, former Lower Manhattan resident

A Virtual Declaration of War On Our Community
John Dellaportas, Coalition To Save West Street

Rebuild The Twin Towers

Don't Acknowledge Bin Laden as Your Urban Planner
Andrew Oliff, Manhattan resident

Safe Skyscapers

Do The Land Swap Deal
Sally Regenhard and Laura Weinberg, Skyscraper Safety Campaign


A Truly Democratic Process?

Where Has The Dialogue Been?
Michael Kuo, Municipal Art Society

Not Just One-Way Communication
Paul Epstein, Civic Alliance to Rebuild Downtown

We Have A Charter, Let's Live By It
Ron Shiffman, Pratt Institute Center for Community and Economic Development

Creating An Appropriate Memorial

Create Something Respectful, Embracing, Reverent And Life-Affirming
Nikki Stern, member of the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation Families Advisory Committee

Honestly and Truthfully Report What Happened
Jack Lynch, Coalition of 9/11 Families

A Separate Space For the Rescue Workers
Bill McLoughlin, Bronx resident

Respect the Dead, Not the Deadline
Diane Horning, WTC Families for Proper Burial, and Laura Walker, Rockland County resident and widow

Money for Rebuilding

From the beginning, 9/11 has been a story about money. Terrorists attacked the Twin Towers because they symbolized finance and power. People from around the world responded to the attack by donating money to charities. The city lost huge amounts of income and revenue and is still struggling as a result. And, as authorities draw closer to deciding on a final design for Ground Zero, some wonder where the money will come from to build whichever plan is chosen. Money remains a much more central question than television and newspaper reports may suggest.

Funding the grand plan for the World Trade Center site is just one of many money troubles left over from 9/11. Politicians fight over the rebuilding funds. Relatives of victims say that the federal funds for compensating the families are being distributed unfairly. And lower Manhattan businesses and residents complain that they are not getting the financial help they need.

After September 11, the federal government set aside $5 billion for victim´s families and agreed to spend over $21 billion to help New York recover. But the attacks´ ultimate costs to the city, in areas like jobs and tourism, will be some five times greater than that – as high as $95 billion, according to city Comptroller William C. Thompson, leaving people with competing plans and needs scrambling for the funds.

How are the city and state going to untangle the confusing mess of 9/11 funds and make sure there is money to pay the most important bills and to build a worthy project where the World Trade Center once stood?

Grand Plans and Empty Coffers

If not exactly a consensus, there is clear movement toward the selection of a design for the World Trade Center site. Rebuilding officials gathered in closed-door meetings last week to discuss the designs for Ground Zero, and announced on February 4 that they had decided on two finalists, Studio Daniel Libeskind and the THINK team.

Libeskind's design exposes the Twin Towers´ original foundations and leaves the hole at Ground Zero for a memorial. The plan has been trumpeted on the New York Times editorial page and in the New York Observer, while the civic group R.Dot, endorsed the Berlin-based Libeskind as the "best man to help rebuild New York's spirit and skyline."

The World Cultural Center plan by the THINK team, with its open steel latticework towers, has also gotten its share of praise. Times critic Herbert Muschamp has said the design is his favorite and called it a "a work of genius, a towering affirmation of humanism in modern times." THINK architect Rafael Viñoly has said that this plan requires a great investment -- as much as $1 billion -- in public spaces, because the towers would not be filled with offices, but with a museum, an amphitheater and other cultural spaces.

But some wonder whether there will be enough money to build either of these plans, and if they make economic sense. World Trade Center lease holder Larry Silverstein could bring billions in insurance money to the rebuilding effort, from $2.4 billion to $3.55 billion to $7.1 billion, depending on how federal judges interpret his insurance agreements, particularly whether they agree with Silverstein that the attack was two separate events. But Silverstein has said that the designs do not fit his requirements, and that he wants to have more of a say in the design for a master plan.

Some have suggested that the Port Authority or the city buy out Silverstein´s lease, but as the New York Times wrote the day after the new plans were released, no developer would necessarily be obligated to build any of the designs. "The demand for office space, which is remarkably weak today, and the nature of the corporations, businesses and institutions that will move into any buildings on the site will have just as great an influence on what the buildings will look like and when they are built" as the architects´ ideas, wrote Charles Bagli.

Bob Yaro, president of the Regional Plan Association, has said that it will take a decade to fill the 17 million square feet of vacant or available office space that already exists downtown. Yaro advocates spending the next ten years building and improving transportation and public spaces in Lower Manhattan, instead of constructing more office towers.

Funding has been secured for one part of the rebuilding puzzle: $4.55 billion in aid from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the federal Department of Transportation has been aside to remake lower Manhattan´s transportation system. Washington has agreed to spend some of that money on rebuilding the World Trade Center PATH station. The federal government will also fund a total renovation of the Broadway Nassau subway station near Ground Zero, as well as the new underground concourse that each of the architecture teams included in their designs. Whether the aid will be extended to Mayor Michael Bloomberg´s idea for a direct rail link between downtown and Kennedy Airport is still unresolved.

But Washington won´t release any of the money for transportation projects until there is a transportation plan, one of reasons that officials have been pushing for a quick decision on a master plan for the World Trade Center site. Some also say that businesses will be more likely to invest downtown after they have a better idea the site´s future. "Once everyone is committed to a plan, it´s going to spur even more economic activity than construction itself," Deputy Mayor Daniel Doctoroff told Newsday.

Political Wrangles

"When there is a big pot of money, everybody gets creative," Bloomberg has said about the federal rebuilding funds. And, although the money will not cover all of New York´s losses, there is undoubtedly a lot of it.

New York City´s federal aid package is being distributed by several different agencies. In a September 2002 report, the White House´s Office of Management and Budget described(pdf) how $20.8 billion of the aid will be distributed: The Federal Emergency Management Agency is in charge of giving out $8.8 billion, much of which has already been spent or allocated for projects like the cleanup at Ground Zero, Project Liberty crisis counseling and rebuilding lower Manhattan transportation. The federal Department of Transportation has $2.3 billion to distribute. The Empire State Development Corporation and the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation are spending $3.7 billion on small business loans and development grants. Another $1 billion will come from other federal agencies for things like job training and reimbursement for hospitals. The package also includes at least $5 billion in tax-free bonds to encourage developers and investors to build in New York City, aid that has gone largely untouched in the city´s current economic climate.

Such money would be coveted in any time, but particularly when the state and city face serious fiscal difficulties. So, for example, Mayor Michael Bloomberg – saying that he needs a new emergency bunker and help paying extra police and fire department costs – has asked the Federal Emergency Management Agency to give him about $690 million that was already promised to other projects.

The federal agency has set aside $800 million for the Port Authority, but Bloomberg suggested that the Port Authority receive just half of that. The mayor also thinks that nearly a third can be shaved from the Federal Emergency Management Agency´s budget to rebuild Fiterman Hall, a Borough of Manhattan Community College building near Ground Zero, and that the Project Liberty counseling project can spare $55 million, since it has had a lower use than expected.

Bloomberg included $1.3 billion in federal funds in the budget for his $10.6 billion vision for lower Manhattan, but he will need to vie with other agencies and even other states to secure the federal money. The mayor had counted on $100 million from the Department of Transportation to be used exclusively for New York City ferry projects. Instead, the department recently pledged $43.4 million of that for New Jersey´s ferry plans.

Meanwhile, in his budget released last week, Governor George Pataki pulled what the Daily News called a "budgetary sleight of hand," and included federal 9/11 disaster funds as part of the total the state is giving to New York City. Critics chided Pataki for taking credit for money that the federal government had already promised the city.

As politicians squabble, funding for a health program for rescue workers is uncertain. President George W. Bush initially included $90 million for the program in his major aid package for the city, but then Democrats shifted the program into a different spending plan. Bush rejected that spending plan outright last August, and the health program didn´t get the funding. Since then, Senator Hillary Clinton and other New York representatives have been lobbying the president and the Federal Emergency Management Agency to support the health program.

9/11 Scams
In order to reap some of the charity and federal disaster relief money after September 11 2001, people invented brothers, husbands, wives -- one man even posed as his brother in order to report himself killed. A San Diego man collected more than $136,000 from disaster relief agencies after falsely claiming that his wife had died in the attacks. By the time he was indicted, he had gambled away all of the money.

Cassaundrea Montgomery, from Missouri, described her made-up brother Joseph – including his preferred cigarette, Marlboro Light 100s -- in applications for aid from the Red Cross, the September 11th fund, Safe Horizon and the Robin Hood Relief Fund. She said he had gone to the World Trade Center for a job interview on 9/11. Now awaiting a federal court trial, she managed to collect $63,817 before she was caught.

The Manhattan District Attorney’s office has prosecuted nearly 500 cases of 9/11 fraud, and expects to see several hundred more.

A worker at the city morgue took coffins that charities had donated to 9/11 victims, sold them to funeral homes and pocketed the money. An elderly millionaire who had already begun renovations on her lower Manhattan apartment tried to get federal rebuilding funds and charity money to cover $500,000 in home improvements.

Companies even took advantage of a Federal Emergency Management Agency program that reimbursed people for air filters or vacuums to clean 9/11 dust from their apartments. The companies advertised products as "FEMA approved" and raised prices so that they could keep an extra chunk of the federal rebate as profit.

Unfair Compensation?

On January 25, the families of seven 9/11 victims who worked at Cantor Fitzgerald in the trade center sued Kenneth Feinberg, the administrator of the federal fund to compensate victims´ families. They are upset about the way Feinberg has treated family members and say that he is unfairly and illegally calculating families´ awards.

Families who agree not to sue the airlines involved n the September 11 attacks are eligible for federal compensation based on a formula The formula tabulates the amounts of the award using a victim´s age, income and number of dependents. But the lawsuit says that Feinberg is not giving enough to families of victims who were not married and puts a cap on the amount--around $6 million—that any family can receive even if, under the formula, the award should much higher.

Feinberg, who has the unenviable task of assigning a dollar amount to people´s suffering, has made few friends. He earlier aroused fury when a New Yorker profile reported that he said "Staten Island, that´s a Third World country," during a drive to the island for a meeting with victims´ families. Feinberg´s remarks prompted Staten Island Representative Vito Fossella to call for his resignation.

Help for Businesses and Residents

The Federal Emergency Management Agency, used to dealing with tornadoes and floods, has struggled with spending the nearly $9 billion it is in charge of distributing to help New York City recover from September 11. Many of the agency´s programs, now coming to a close, were fraught with glitches, criticisms and calls for extensions. Last November, the agency missed payments on the Albany post office box where New Yorkers had been told to send aid applications. The box closed, and hundreds of applications were stamped "return to sender." The Urban Justice Center analyzed the agency´s awards and found that people from less affluent areas like the Lower East Side and Chinatown applied in fewer numbers and got less help than Tribeca residents.

On January 31, the agency stopped taking applications for one of its most contentious programs, which was set up to help people struggling to pay their home mortgage and rent after September 11. The Federal Emergency Management Agency did not begin publishing brochures for the program in languages other than English until last June, when it relaxed some of the program´s eligibility requirements. Right up until last week´s deadline, advocates for immigrants, local politicians and others called for an extension, saying that not enough people who needed help knew about the program.

The agency´s federal recovery officer, Brad Gair, has said that he is confident the agency reached the people who really needed help. However, when the Federal Emergency Management Agency´s Inspector General´s office did its own review of how well the agency did its job, it concluded that it should have been more flexible and fair when distributing aid after 9/11. The review, released in January, also said that the agency should have worked harder to understand the indirect economic effects of the attacks.

But the Federal Emergency Management Agency is not the only office under fire. Residents and businesses have also criticized the state and city agencies that administer 9/11 programs, saying that people entitled to rebuilding funds cannot always get them because of circumstances beyond their control. The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation is giving out $281 million in federal funds to tenants near Ground Zero, but people who live in buildings with outstanding fire or building code violations can´t get grants until their landlords make repairs. Meanwhile, 9/11 scam artists have managed to bilk charities and government agencies alike (see box).

The World Trade Center Business Recovery Grant Program, which stopped taking applications from small businesses at the end of last year, will give out at least $492 billion, $11 million more than the fund actually has in its coffers. The agency in charge of the program, the Empire State Development Corporation, has said it may need to reallocate money from other 9/11 programs to make sure that every qualifying business gets its grant.

But even though the program will give more than it planned, many small businesses say the individual grants are small change compared to actual losses. As of last November, half of the grants given out were for less than $13,000.

While such programs have helped some people and businesses that suffered losses from the attack, their importance will fade in the months ahead, as many cease operation and government and business begin to rebuild downtown. For that to succeed – and for any of the proposed designs to appear on the skyline – business deals and the overall economy could prove more important than any government aid package. Whoever funds the redevelopment projects, assuming anyone does, the story will continue to be about money.

Gotham at War

Long before September 11th, the threat of terrorist acts kept New Yorkers in a panic and local authorities in a state of alert -- though not alert enough.

In November, 1864, a dozen agents of the Confederacy infiltrated the city and, using a "combustible liquid" prepared by a chemist in a secret laboratory off Washington Square, they set fire to major hotels, public buildings and ships in lower Manhattan.

Damage was not as severe as the plotters had hoped for, because the material they set aflame did not ignite as easily as they had expected. But this was neither the first nor the last attempt at sabotage during the Civil War, according to Gotham At War: New York City, 1860 - 1865 (213pp. Wilmington: Scholarly Resources Inc., $17.95), by Edward K. Spann, just published. There were reports of an attempt at germ warfare and rumors of an effort to poison the water supply, as well as speculation that a huge waterfront fire that destroyed some 30 vessels along the Hudson River below 14th Street was arson.

At a time when America is again at war, a war that may escalate, historians and curators are looking back at New York City during wartimes past. Although there have been surprisingly few books written on New York City at war over the years (see list), there are three new books out now about the city during the Civil War and Revolutionary War, and an exhibition recently opened downtown comparing New York City's renaissance after the revolution with the city's recovery after 9/11. A fourth book, though first published in 1927, and devoting only two chapters to wartime New York, is likely to get by far the most attention: The Gangs of New York, by Herbert Asbury, has been made into a movie directed by Martin Scorsese and starring Leonardo DiCaprio, scheduled to be in the movie houses in December.

Although no army of enemy soldiers have been on Gotham's shores since 1783, when the last British redcoats left Manhattan, New York City has been heavily involved with all American wars. "New York has always been a symbol for its enemies." said Barnet Schecter, author of the new Revolutionary War book The Battle for New York (454 pp. New York: Walker & Company, $30.00).


Civil unrest and rioting swept New York City at the start of the American Revolution, as New Yorkers struggled to choose sides; rebel or royalist. "We are all in Confusion in the City.... What will be the end of this, God knows," a New Yorker wrote in 1770 to a friend in London. Richard Ketchum's new book Divided Loyalties (447pp. New York: A John Macrae Book/Henry Holt & Company, $30.00) tells the story of how the revolution began in New York City, and how religious and business ties helped decide where New Yorkers' allegiances fell. In 1775, tensions were so high that local patriot committees spied on their neighbors, and even tarred and feathered supposed British informers.

The most actual combat in New York City history took place in 1776, when the British defeated troops in Brooklyn and captured Manhattan. "Before September 11, 2001, the last time New York was attacked by an outside force was on September 15, 1776," said Schecter, whose new book The Battle for New York picks up the story of the Revolutionary War in New York City just after the point that Divided Loyalties closes.

Schecter spoke after a reading at the Revolutionary War-era Fraunces Travern, where a current museum exhibition, called "New York Battles Back" celebrates New York City's recovery after the revolution and draws parallels to recovery efforts after 9/11. The city rebuilt after suffering great damage and devastation during the Revolutionary War, said Fraunces Tavern Museum executive director Andrew Batten. "In 1776, large portions of the city burned to the ground. The Fraunces Tavern itself was hit, when at least one cannonball from a British ship went through the roof," said Batten.

In The Battle for New York, Schecter argues that the British lost crucial battle time wrapped up in New York City's whirling social life and devoted too many needed troops to protecting Gotham. "The British had a fondness for New York City, and were, in a sense, captured and captivated by the city," he said.

On September 15, the British first invaded Manhattan at Kips Bay, which was an actual bay before it was filled in and became a neighborhood in the East 30s. (Schecter's book is filled with similar details, which connect battle scenes to present streetscapes. A New York City Revolutionary War walking tour is online at www.thebattlefornewyork.com.) After landing, British commander General William Howe and his staff did not immediately send the first division of troops after the Americans. Instead, they visited the Murray family of Murray Hill--prominent loyalists--for refreshments while waiting for the second division to arrive.

The British stayed for several hours, drinking Madeira, eating cakes and chatting with the Murray daughters, leaving General George Washington and the American army just enough time to retreat uptown. A (highly unproven) legend has grown that Mary Murray was a patriot in disguise, and delayed the British on purpose.

Less than a week after the British invasion, a fire started in lower Manhattan that spread up the city's west side. A quarter of the city burned down, including Trinity Church, the tallest building at the time.

Both the British and the Americans blamed each other for setting fire to New York City. However, in The Battle for New York, Schecter writes that the fire most likely happened of natural causes. Its impact on the city's psychological well-being was tremendous. "The fire introduced an element of paranoia and contributed to a siege mentality that made British commanders fiercely protective of the city," writes Schecter. The British occupation lasted seven years, during which 11,000 American prisoners aboard jail boats in the harbor starved to death. "People were living under a military regime," Schecter said, "in charred ruins and tents."

The war's end brought Gotham a change of fortune. General Washington made a triumphant entry into New York City after winning the war, and the city, its population booming, was rebuilt to become the new nation's first capital. "The city never returned to its prewar status, but it immediately jumped ahead," said Batten of the Fraunces Tavern Museum. "New Yorkers take adversity and run with it."

WAR OF 1812

After U.S. Congress declared war on Great Britain in June of 1812, and British ships arrived at Sandy Hook with the threat to invade, New Yorkers widely volunteered to defend their city. "Women organized in Brooklyn Heights to dig trenches and the Council of Defense recruited artisans, free blacks, and students to build barricades," writes Arnold Markoe in the Encyclopedia of New York City. Their preparations, however heroic, were never tested, as the city itself was not attacked.


If the only actual battles in New York during the Civil War were riots and acts of sabotage, the city had a great influence on the war, and the war, a great effect on the city.

Few New Yorkers welcomed the conflict. In fact, the city was a center of anti-war sentiment. "The most dangerous foes of the Republic are in New York City," said Frederick Law Olmstead, the chief architect of Central Park and ardently pro-Union. Businessmen feared that a break with the South, their lucrative trading partner, would cripple the city's economy. And many New Yorkers, says Edward Spann in Gotham At War, were resentful of the rich citizens' ability to opt out of the draft, and were also anti-abolitionist and outright racist -- wary that the war would free the slaves, who would then take away their jobs. The infamous Draft Riots of 1863 -- which, in a startling inversion of current events, were said to have been instigated by resentful firefighters -- resulted in the death of more than 100 New Yorkers, many of them black.

Several books have been written about the draft riots alone, and there are two chapters about it in The Gangs of New York, by Herbert Asbury. He writes that the riots began, "as a protest against the Conscription Act which had been passed by Congress in March, but that phase of the struggle was soon forgotten, and thereafter the riots were an insurrection of the criminal element against the established order. The disturbances were the natural end of the ruinous road along which the city had traveled during the preceding fifteen years, and the logical result of the governmental corruption which had permitted Manhattan Island to become the Mecca of criminals from all parts of the United States and the slums of Europe."

Despite the fear and anger, the war proved to be a great boon to the city's population and to its economy; New York, wrote New Yorker George Templeton Strong, had become the "grand commercial money-making center of the universe," the city having won a central role in the new economy. This was due in part to massive government purchases of goods manufactured in New York, especially of clothing -- not always to the benefit of the nation. It is in New York City during the Civil War that the term "shoddy" got its modern meaning. At the time, shoddy simply meant ground-up rags. But the New York clothing manufacturers who were contracted to make army uniforms used shoddy, and the uniforms fell apart. That company is still in business, Brooks Brothers. Much of the prosperity focused on the wealthy elite, while many New Yorkers, especially women, were increasingly impoverished. Two years before the draft riots, some soldiers' wives rioted on the Lower East Side. "One woman warned that she would get her husband to desert from his unit," she said, "rather than see her family starve."

The story of New York during the Civil War is clearly not all uplift. But neither is it thoroughly downbeat. The city's bankers lent the Union government most of the money it needed to conduct the war. New York was at the forefront of medical advances to treat the war-wounded, witnessed a rise of organized labor to combat the increasing exploitation of workers, and a rise of organized charity to meet the needs of the unfortunate.


New York City was home to the planning and propaganda that led up to the Spanish American War. Cuban leader Jose Marti, exiled in Manhattan, built the momentum for an uprising against Spain among Cuban cigar worker communities in New York. In 1895, Marti rolled the order for a revolt into a cigar, and sent it to be smuggled into Havana. Prominent New Yorkers like William Randolph Hearst and John Jacob Astor supported the Cuban rebellion, urging President McKinley to declare war against Spain in 1897. "Within weeks, the war was over, both Cuba and Puerto Rico taken," write Mike Wallace and Edwin Burrows in Gotham: A History of the City up to 1898. "New Yorkers went wild over America's emergence as an imperial power."


During World War I, anti-German paranoia spread to New York City's cultural and educational institutions. City public schools stopped offering German-language classes and German works were banned from the Metropolitan Opera's repertoire. The U.S. Department of Justice carried out "slacker raids," rounding up draft evaders in New York City during the spring of 1918.

New Yorkers feared an attack in the city itself after ammunition stores in Black Tom, New Jersey exploded in 1916, probably because they were set alight by German saboteurs. The explosion broke windows in Brooklyn and shell cases hit the Statue of Liberty. However, German forces never targeted the city.


The onset of the Second World War brought new fears to Gotham. "With the outbreak of war, a terror of a kind not felt since the British invasion of 1776 gripped New York, widely presumed to be the number one target for transatlantic German bomb runs," write Ric Burns and James Sanders in New York: an Illustrated History. The fear never materialized, because the Germans weren't able to create a bomber capable of making the round trip.

The war returned prosperity to a New York City downtrodden by the depression years. "In an odd way, what happened during the Second World War was that the city returned to an 18th century mode. Not since the British colonial era had the city been a supply base," said historian Mike Wallace who was astonished to find that there is no book yet written about New York City during World War II. He is researching the era for a companion volume to Gotham: A History of the City up to 1898, the history of the city Wallace spent 20 years writing with Edwin Burrows.

The war's effect on the city replayed what went on during the Civil War, only to a much greater degree. Over three million soldiers and 63 million tons of supplies were shipped through New York during the war. New defense contracts at the New York Navy Yard and business in medicine, electronics and other industries helped end city unemployment for many. But not for all. African Americans were excluded from working in the weapons industry until 1941, and a Harlem riot began in 1943 after a white police officer shot a black soldier during an argument.

During World War II, the city became synonymous with the two r's: rest and recreation. "The whorehouses were happy, the entertainment industry was happy, sailors were flooding the bars and night clubs and the rest of it," said Wallace. "This is a time when the b-boppers are inventing an analogous new kind of music uptown...ballet, film, and the Broadway theater goes to the ceiling."

It is at this time as well, said Wallace, that President Franklin Roosevelt transferred many of New York's New Deal labor and social programs onto a national level. "Also, the deals were cut to bring the United Nations here, making this place the de facto capital of the world," he said.


Anti-war protests were common in the Vietnam-era New York City, and many influential demonstrations took place here. In 1967, Martin Luther King and 125,000 anti-war demonstrators marched from Central Park to the United Nations. Poet Allen Ginsberg was arrested for blocking the entrance to the Whitehall Street building where New Yorkers reported for the draft. In April 1968, the anti-war group Students for a Democratic Society occupied five Columbia University buildings.

The Vietnam War's drain on the national budget led to inflation, and after the war's end in 1975 many New York City businesses verged on bankruptcy.


What will it mean for New York City if the U.S. goes to war with Iraq? Many New Yorkers are already fighting to keep paranoia in check, while the press stokes fears about possible retaliatory attacks. "Among American cities, none is as tempting a target as New York," wrote the New York Observer in October. "Those who say that Saddam Hussein would never be able to unleash smallpox in Times Square, or deliver a crude nuclear weapon into New York harbor, would surely also have dismissed the possibility--as we all did--of men armed with box-cutters flying airliners into the Twin Towers and the Pentagon, killing thousands of U.S. civilians."

Not everyone is panicking about the same thing. A recent article in Crain's New York about tourism and the brewing international conflict went so far as to say that it is very poorly timed. "A war that begins in the next few months would be particularly damaging for New York's tourism industry. From late September to just before Christmas, [hotel] rooms are typically full of conference attendees, shoppers and people in the city to enjoy the fall season." The article cited in all seriousness a recent report by PFK Consulting, which predicted that a lengthy war with Iraq would cause hotel industry revenues to fall by 4.6 percent.

Market analyst Jude Wanniski said that the prospect of war is already making havoc on Wall Street. She tells investors that their biggest risk is "the possibility that President Bush will pull the trigger on Iraq." A war with Iraq could drive oil prices through the roof, deepening the current recession into a full scale depression, said Wallace. "The consequences [for New York City] could be homelessness, unemployment and food lines."

Some disagree with such a gloomy forecast. New York City has a tradition of continuing on with its business, oblivious of national or global struggles, said Kenneth Jackson, president of the New York Historical Society. "During the Civil War, many commentators said that you couldn't tell there was a war going on. During World War I, there were blackouts, and more people in uniform, and many more ships, convoys lined up in East River, but on the streets, the city remained the same."

"Most of the time in New York," Jackson observes, "you wouldn't know there was a war on."

Books About New York City During Wartime

You can sort the list by clicking on the categories at the top of the list.

Title Author Release Date Publisher Subject

American Scoundrel: The Life of the Notorious Civil War General Dan Sickles Thomas Keneally 2002 Doubleday and Company Civil War
An often "spellbinding" biography of Dan Sickles, a notorious New York politician and Civil War general who was acquitted of murdering his wife's lover.

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Banished Children of Eve: A Novel of Civil War New York Peter Quinn 1995 Viking Penguin Civil War
A novel focusing on the experiences Irish immigrants in Civil War-era New York.
Battle of Brooklyn 1776 John J. Gallagher   Perseus Publishing Revolutionary War
Despite a British victory, this first major battle of the Revolutionary War symbolized the spirit of independence that eventually lead the United States to win the war.
Behind the Lines Isabelle Holland 1994 Scholastic Trade Civil War
A "moving historical novel" for young adults about class and race differences that is set against the New York City draft riots.
Chaining the Hudson: The Fight for the River in the American Revolution Lincoln Diamant 1994 Citadel Press Revolutionary War
Tells the story of the struggle for command of the Hudson River during the Revolutionary War and the story of the chain stretched across the Hudson River at Bear Mountain.
Divided Loyalties: How the American Revolution Came to New York Richard M. Ketchum 2002 Henry Holt and Company, Inc. Revolutionary War
Describes how the Revolution's arrival in New York City tore apart the community. Ketchum explains why New Yorkers with similar life experiences--even members of the same family--chose different sides when the war erupted. Ketchum "weaves a complex but forceful narrative web from many diaries and memoirs."

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Duty, Honor, Privilege: New York City's Silk Stocking Regiment and the Breaking of the Hindenburg Line Stephen L. Harris 2002 Brasseys, Inc. World War I
Elmira: Death Camp of the North Michael Horigan 2002 Stackpole Books Civil War
History of the Elmira, New York prison camp, which had the highest death rate of prison camps in the North
Father Knickerbocker Rebels: New York City During the Revolution T. J. Wertenbaker 1948 C. Scribner's Sons Revolutionary War
Generous Enemies: Patriots and Loyalists in Revolutionary New York (Early American Studies) Judith L. Van Buskirk 2002 University of Pennsylvania Press Revolutionary War
Van Buskirk examines loyalists and rebels in New York, showing how personal concerns -- among British and American soldiers, free blacks, slaves, and businessmen -- often triumphed over political ideology.
Gotham at War: New York City, 1860-1865 (The American Crisis Series, No. 9) Edward K. Spann 2002 Scholarly Resources Civil War
A history of the complex role New York City played in the Civil War.
History of New York During the Revolutionary War Thomas Jones 1879 New York Historical Society Revolutionary War
New York City Draft Riots: Their Significance for American Society and Politics in the Age of the Civil War Iver Bernstein 1994 Oxford University Press Civil War
A "Rashomon-like investigation" of the 1863 New York City Draft Riots.
New York City During the War for Independence Theodore Barck Jr. 1931 Columbia University Press Revolutionary War
New York in the American Revolution Wilbur Cortez Abbott 1973 Haskell House Publishing Revolutionary War
A picturesque account of New York in the time of the Revolutionary War.
Paradise Alley: A Novel Kevin Baker 2002 HarperCollins Civil War
A historical novel set during the Draft Riots of 1863, widely regarded as the worst episode of civic unrest in New York's history.

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Redcoats and Petticoats Katherine Kirkpatrick and Ronald Himler 1999 Holiday House, Inc. Revolutionary War
"Basing the book on true incidents and real people of the Revolutionary War, Kirkpatrick re-creates the actions of Patriot spies begun by Robert Townsend and assisted by strong-willed, cool-headed Nancy Strong in the little town of Setauket, New York," wrote Kirkus Reviews.
Reluctant Revolutionaries: New York City and the Road to Independence, 1767-1776 Joseph S. Tiedemann 1997 Cornell University Press Revolutionary War
In a study of New York City between 1763 and 1776, Tiedemann explains how residents labored to build a consensus under difficult circumstances. He pays close attention to the dynamics of British colonial rule and its impact on New York.
Second Founding: New York City and the Reconstruction of American Democracy David Quigley 2003 Hill and Wang Civil War
David Quigley argues that New York City's politics and politicians lay at the heart of the post-Civil War Reconstruction era.

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