Gotham Gazette

The Place for New York Policy and politics


Rebuilding NYC April 2004

Bush "Candid" in Meeting With 9/11 Commission - Apr 30, 2004
President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney were questioned in the Oval Office for more than three hours on Thursday by the commission investigating the Sept. 11 attacks. They said intelligence warnings they received throughout 2001 suggested that Al Qaeda was poised to strike overseas, not on American soil, according to accounts of commission and administration officials. (New York Times)

Jury Deals Blow to Developer in WTC Insurance Trial - Apr 30, 2004
A federal jury in Manhattan handed the developer Larry A. Silverstein a major setback yesterday in his bitter legal battle with two dozen insurers over how much money will be available for rebuilding the sprawling World Trade Center site. The panel ruled that many of the insurers were not liable for the double payments he had sought. (New York Times)

Westchester Picks 9/11 Memorial - Apr 30, 2004
Westchester County unveiled the winning design on Thursday for its own Sept. 11 memorial, a soaring sculpture with 109 intersecting steel rods, each representing a victim who lived in the county. The memorial, named "The Rising," was designed by Frederic Schwartz, an acclaimed Manhattan architect and a founder of the Think team. Think's entry in the master plan competition for ground zero was the runner-up in that contest. The Westchester memorial will be built at Kensico Dam Plaza, a county-owned park in Valhalla. Unveiling is scheduled for Sept. 11, 2005. (New York Times)

Governor Wants Additional Anti-Terror Team For New York - Apr 30, 2004
Gov. George Pataki is pushing federal authorities to launch a second specialized National Guard team in New York to detect weapons of mass destruction, saying the current outfit needs more help. Currently, 31 states have Civil Support Teams to screen for chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons. The group in New York has been used at times of heightened security alerts, often in New York City. (Albany Times Union)

Broadway Ticket Sales Back to Pre 9/11 Levels - Apr 29, 2004
Broadway ticket sales have been soaring on the Great White Way. Tourists are back in numbers not seen since before Sept. 11. A more diverse range of productions than at any time in memory is attracting new audiences. An unusually large number of smash-hit musicals is bringing in crowds. (Crains New York )

Midtown Retail Rates Surpass Pre-9/11 Levels - Apr 29, 2004
Midtown retail asking rents have not only returned to pre-Sept. 11 levels but have surpassed them. In the spring of 2004, according to the Real Estate Board of New YorkÕs spring retail report, asking retail rents in midtown averaged $125 per square foot. That tops the $122-per-square-foot average midtown rent in spring 2001; the terrorist attacks helped bring prices as low as $107 in the fall of 2001. Downtown and midtown south have yet to recover, according to REBNY. Downtown retail asking rents are averaging $59 per square foot, compared with $60 in the spring of 2001. Asking rents for midtown south retail space are averaging $75 a square foot, still shy of pre-Sept. 11 levels of $78. (Crains NY )

New Documentary Film Looks at NY Firefighters Post 9/11 - Apr 29, 2004
Thomas Burke has been a firefighter for 25 years. He's just one of the firefighters featured in "Brotherhood," an up-close and very personal look at New York's Bravest as the department rebuilds after 9/11. (NY1)

New Subway Tunnel May Require that Sphere Statue Be Moved - Apr 29, 2004
It appears that a subway tunnel leading to the planned new South Ferry terminal would come close to Fritz Koenig's "Sphere for Plaza Fountain" -- which has been in Battery Park since soon after 9/11 -- suggesting strongly that the sculpture may have to be relocated. (New York Times)

Police Parking Impeding Chinatown's Post 9/11 Recovery - Apr 29, 2004
Even though the attack on the World Trade Center happened two and a half years ago, residents and business owners in Chinatown say their neighborhood, just a short distance from ground zero, has not recovered. Because of the security measures imposed on the nearby police headquarters and other government offices, they say, conditions in their part of Lower Manhattan have actually grown worse. (New York Times)

Bush, Cheney to Meet With 9/11 Commission Today - Apr 29, 2004
President Bush and Vice President Cheney will meet privately for several hours with the Sept. 11 commission on Thursday. Bush faces the same challenge as he does on the campaign trail: convincing Americans that he responded appropriately to an intelligence system that CIA Director George Tenet said was ``blinking red'' with warnings of a terrorist strike. (Associated Press)

The Quiet But Aggressive Staff of the 9/11 Commission - Apr 29, 2004
When Dietrich Snell first felt his office shake on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001 Ă‘ the reverberations from the first jetliner crashing into the World Trade Center down the street Ă‘ he ran into the office of his boss, the attorney general of New York, Eliot L. Spitzer. In the spring of 2003, Mr. Snell again walked into Mr. Spitzer's office, this time after he received an offer to be an investigator on the independent commission looking into government actions before the Sept. 11 attacks. "Well, you have no choice," Mr. Spitzer recalled telling Mr. Snell, who was a deputy attorney general. "You can't say no to that request." (New York Times)

$5 Billion in Antiterror Aid Reportedly Stuck in Pipeline - Apr 28, 2004
More than $5 billion in federal money to help communities brace for terrorist attacks has not yet reached the local authorities and remains stuck in the administrative pipeline, Congressional officials said Tuesday. That is more than 80 percent of the money approved by Congress to help cities, counties and states since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, and efforts to prepare for possible attacks may be lagging as a result, a new Congressional analysis has found. (New York Times)

How Will the 9/11 Insurance Case Affect Commercial Real Estate? - Apr 28, 2004
So, One or Two: besides the not insubstantial sum of $3.6 billion, what difference will it make? A fascinating one. Commercial landlords across the city have to be feeling torn. Of course, they want to see their colleague Larry Silverstein emerge triumphant, a patrician warrior hero with an unfathomable bundle of cash in hand. But if he does, then they smell trouble. (Slatin Report)

Bush-Cheney Interview With 9/11 Commission Thursday Won't Be Recorded - Apr 28, 2004
The White House said on Tuesday that there would be no recording or formal transcription of the historic joint interview of President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney by the independent commission investigating the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. The interview, to begin at 9:30 a.m. on Thursday at the White House, will be recorded by two note takers, one from the White House. Under a pact with the White House that allowed all its 10 members in the interview, the commission is permitted to take a note taker, but not a recording device. The panel said it did not press for a formal transcription of the session, letting the White House decide. (New York Times)

Homeland Security Funds Going To Communities That Don't Need It, Finds Congressional Study - Apr 28, 2004
Millions of dollars in federal homeland security aid has gone to communities that don't need it, and billions more remain unspent, according to a congressional study released Tuesday. The report affirms complaints of New York officials who say they've been shortchanged in homeland security grants and will fuel their push to require that the federal government give a greater share of funds to high-risk areas. (Newsday)

Feeling Shortchanged on Security Funds, Police, Firefighters Plan Convention Protest - Apr 28, 2004
Feeling shortchanged by Washington, some city firefighters and police are vowing to protest against President Bush and the Republicans at their convention in New York this summer. Unions representing cops and firefighters have requested permits to protest at the Republican National Convention in August at Madison Square Garden. (New York Daily News)

New York Emergency Responders Not Prepared for Chemical Attack - Apr 28, 2004
More than two years after 9/11 and nine years after a Japanese cult released a toxic gas on the Tokyo subway system, the majority of New York City's emergency medical technicians are not properly trained to enter a contaminated zone and treat victims, officials said Tuesday. Of 3,000 paramedics and emergency medical technicians in the city, only 133 have the necessary training. (New York Times)

St. Paul's Embraces Role As 9/11 Icon - Apr 28, 2004
St. Paul's Chapel, where Americans worshiped even before they were American, has long been known as the oldest public building in Manhattan. Old, it certainly was. But the Episcopal chapel did not really become public until Sept. 11, 2002, when the doors opened to "Out of the Dust," a temporary display about its ground zero ministry. Now this public role has been institutionalized (New York Times)

Juror Asks to Leave 9/11 Insurance Trial - Apr 28, 2004
A juror's unofficial request to be excused from the trial over insurance coverage at the World Trade Center sent a tremor through the courtroom yesterday during the sixth day of jury deliberations in the multibillion-dollar case. (New York Times)

British Minister of Parliament Back NY 9/11 Memorial for British Victims - Apr 27, 2004
British Minister of Parliament Gisela Stuart is supporting a campaign to construct a permanent memorial to the 67 British citizens who died in terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center. (Evening Mail)

Many in Dance World Want Smaller Theater At Ground Zero - Apr 27, 2004
Many in the New York dance world are rallying behind the Joyce Theater's proposal to build a 900-seat home for dance as a cultural anchor for the World Trade Center site, favoring it over the New York City Opera's proposal to build a 2,200-seat opera house that would be used in part for dance in the off-season. (New York Times)

Agent Who Rebuilt ATF Headquarters After 9/11 Takes High Post - Apr 27, 2004
The man who led the rebuilding of the department of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearm's New York operations after its World Trade Center office was pulverized in the terror attacks was appointed yesterday to the agency's No. 2 spot. (New York Daily News)

After Nine Month Delay, Metropolitan Transportation Authority Begins To Spend Security Funds - Apr 27, 2004
The MTA began spending $591 million in security funds Monday, nine months after the money was first approved. A committee that oversees major projects approved the hiring of four firms to bolster the system's terrorism preparedness through several projects. Officials declined to say what exactly the firms will do, citing security concerns. (Newsday)

First Class Graduates From Fire Department's Anti-Terror School - Apr 27, 2004
A group of elite firefighters graduated yesterday from the FDNY's first-ever anti-terror school. In a City Hall ceremony, Mayor Bloomberg praised the graduates - top fire chiefs, captains, marshals and medics - who spent 14 weeks delving into the minds and means of the world's vilest terrorists. (New York Daily News)

Terrorism Concerns Inspire More Training for Transit Workers - Apr 27, 2004
Although the need to evacuate subway trains because of fires or other problems has always been a part of travel underground, emergency training for transit workers has taken on newfound importance in a jittery world of orange alerts and terrorist threats. Partly because of terrorism concerns, transit officials are planning to offer the daylong fire safety and evacuation training sessions to more workers and make those who have already gone through it do so more often. (New York Times)

Community Board One Battles Over Rebuilding Funds - Apr 26, 2004
In the face of a report that most of the remaining $1 billion in post-9/11 aid has already been slated to build a commuter-airport rail link to Downtown, Community Board 1 recommended spending much of the money on affordable housing, park space, community centers and a school. (Downtown Express)

Memorial Designer Joins NY Architecture Firm - Apr 25, 2004
Girding for the commission of a lifetime - translating an evocative idea into the reality of a permanent World Trade Center site memorial - New York's best-known unknown architect, Michael Arad, has joined a 50-person firm in Manhattan. On Monday, Mr. Arad was named a partner in Handel Architects, a 10-year-old firm that reshaped the Lincoln Center area in the 1990's with mixed-use projects for Millennium Partners. (New York Times)

9/11 Commission to Criticize Domestic Air Defense System - Apr 25, 2004
The commission investigating the Sept. 11 attacks is expected to offer sharp criticism of the Pentagon's domestic air-defense command in its final report, according to commission officials who said they believed that quicker military action might have prevented a hijacked passenger plane from crashing into the Pentagon itself. (New York Times)

City Comptroller Aims to Stop Companies From Dealing With Terror Sponsors - Apr 24, 2004
The city comptroller wants to change a loophole which lets the foreign subsidiaries of U.S. companies deal with countries that sponsor terrorism. William Thompson says the firms are dealing in blood money and he vows to change the law. He's fighting several companies over their dealings with Iran and Syria. New Jersey Senator Frank Lautenberg says he will introduce a bill preventing this exception. They singled out Halliburton Company, ConocoPhillips, and General Electric for exposing a loophole in the law. (NY1)

Federal Reports Reveal Weakness of Airport Security - Apr 23, 2004
Passenger screening at the nation's airports is like Swiss cheese - full of gaping holes that are endangering travelers' lives, according to two top-secret federal reports. The alarming findings revealed yesterday outraged congressmen and immediately prompted calls for an emergency meeting to boost efforts to make the skies safe. (New York Post)

Fire Department Lagging on Communication, Terror Training - Apr 23, 2004
New York City Fire Department, while retaining a strong esprit de corps after the Sept. 11 attack, is nonetheless hurt by an inability to communicate during fires and other emergencies, a new workplace study reports. Moreover, half of the firefighters and their supervisors who participated in the study said they had not received enough training to handle "terror-related incidents." (New York Times)

New York Keeping Ground Zero Out of Olympic Bid - Apr 22, 2004
Ground Zero is so close to New York's Olympic bid-city headquarters, it's impossible not to think the two are intertwined. But bid officials, right from the days following Sept.11, said they would not use the terrorist attacks for sympathy in trying to win the 2012 Summer Olympics. (The Gazette )

Does the Port Authority Really Own Ground Zero? - Apr 22, 2004
What is said about the World Trade Center site can sometimes be at odds - if ever so slightly - with fine-grained reality. Case in point: The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey owns the 16-acre trade center site. That statement of fact is repeated reflexively in accounts of the ground zero rebuilding. But it turns out that it may not be quite true. (New York Times)

Firefighters' Post 9/11 Stress Not Unusual, Says New Study - Apr 21, 2004
City firefighters reported increased stress and emotional problems after 9/11, but that should be expected in such a high-risk job, according to a study by Cornell University. The report also said that firefighters are no different than the general population when it comes to possible alcohol abuse, despite several highly publicized events involving firefighters and drinking in recent months. (Newsday)

City Claims it Hasn't Received $2.6 Billion in Promised 9/11 Aid - Apr 21, 2004
New York City estimates it has not received some $2.6 billion in promised Sept. 11 aid, and is quietly seeking to swap that shortfall for hard cash as part of a key Senate vote expected as early as next week. (Associated Press)

City Seeks Formal Governing Role in Ground Zero Development - Apr 21, 2004
The Bloomberg administration called yesterday for a formal agreement with the Port Authority and the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation to govern the redevelopment of the World Trade Center site, much as a 1967 compact did. Then, the biggest issues were television reception and how much money the city would receive in lieu of real estate taxes. Now, the goal is to ensure that rebuilding "is not delayed or hindered by lack of coordination or misunderstandings," Deputy Mayor Daniel L. Doctoroff said in a letter to state officials. (New York Times)

Train Crash Tests First Responders - Apr 20, 2004
Since the 9/11 terror attacks, cops and firefighters have been drilling regularly to coordinate their response to major emergencies. Penn Station has been of major concern, especially with the Republican National Convention coming this summer. A train crash yesterday tested their reactions. (New York Daily News)

Name Added to 9/11 Death List - Apr 20, 2004
The following name has been added to the list of those lost in the 9/11 World Trade Center attacks: Thomas J. McCann, 45. (New York Post)

Firefighters Still Suffer Stress From Working At Ground Zero - Apr 20, 2004
Firefighters who worked at Ground Zero are experiencing high rates of depression, anxiety and stress, a new study shows. The survey of 2,000 firefighters found that 62% of those who worked at the World Trade Center site in the month after 9/11 still suffer from depression, said Samuel Bacharach, director of Cornell University's Smithers Institute, which conducted the study. (New York Daily News)

9/11 Suits Reveal Law Allowing Absentee Parents to Profit From Their Children's Deaths - Apr 20, 2004
The legal aftermath of the World Trade Center attack has revealed what some lawyers say is a flaw in New York State law: a parent who abandons a child may still be entitled to death benefits if that child is later killed on the job. The benefits come from the state workers' compensation fund, which awards $50,000 to the parents of people who die while working and do not leave spouses or children. And in two recent decisions, reported this month in The New York Law Journal, a state appellate court in Albany has ruled that the Workers' Compensation Board was right to split the money between a mother who raised a son alone and the biological father. (New York Times)

Amidst the Battles, Quality World Trade Center Plan Emerges - Apr 19, 2004
In the city that supposedly never sleeps, the redesign of the World Trade Center site has been the story that truly never stops. Lawsuits. Turf battles. Heavy political pressures. Intense emotional appeals. High-voltage international design contests. Daily press coverage of every big and little fight. It has been an exciting, confounding, downright messy process with surprises at every turn in the twisting road. And yet, so far, the biggest surprise of all is the high quality of the results. (Washington Post)

Suit Attempts to Stop Use of Liberty Bonds For Queens Power Plant - Apr 19, 2004
Five New York lawmakers plan to file suit today to keep a proposed power plant in Queens from getting $400 million in state Liberty Bonds, The Post has learned. The company that wants to build the plant, SCS Energy, has received preliminary approval for the bonds from the New York Liberty Development Corp., a quasi-governmental entity set up by the state. The legislators say the tax-free funds should not go to a project that has nothing to do with rebuilding lower Manhattan. (New York Post)

Police Department Racks Up Big Bill in Anti-Terror Efforts - Apr 19, 2004
The U.S. occupation of Iraq has cost the New York City Police Department more than $200 million as it has beefed up efforts to protect the city. That stark figure underscores how financial support for the domestic fight against terrorism remains a critical issue, with still no sizable amount of money from the federal government, Commissioner Raymond Kelly said. (New York Daily News)

Jury To Begin Deliberations On World Trade Center Insurance Suit - Apr 19, 2004
It will probably take more than 90 minutes for the judge to deliver a complex set of jury instructions this morning in the bitter multibillion-dollar court battle between developer Larry A. Silverstein and insurers over what coverage was in effect at the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001. But after hearing 10 weeks of testimony, the jury will begin to deliberate over matters that will ultimately dictate how much insurance money will be available to rebuild the sprawling trade center complex. (New York Times)

For Disabled, Safer Way To Cross West Street Near Ground Zero Planned - Apr 18, 2004
By late June or early July, nearly three years after the Twin Towers were destroyed, officials hope to restore the first safe and reliable way near the World Trade Center site for wheelchair-bound people to enter Battery Park City. State Transportation Dept. officials told Community Board 1Õs Battery Park City committee Tuesday that elevators on the east and west sides of the Vesey St. pedestrian bridge will be running by the early summer and should not have the same mechanical problems that have plagued the neighborhoodÕs other pedestrian bridge elevators in the winter. The escalator on the west side of the bridge is expected to open Friday, April 16, and the escalators on the east by mid-to-late June. (Downtown Express)

Environmental Protection Agency Watchdog Panel Looks to Expand Health Testing Downtown - Apr 18, 2004
Experts charged with reviewing the Environmental Protection AgencyÕs response to the World Trade Center collapse have recommended broader testing to determine what, if any, contamination remains from the disaster. (Downtown Express)

Downtown Has One Billion Dollars in Federal Funds Left - Apr 18, 2004
The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation board voted on Tuesday to earmark $176 million in federal Community Development Block Grant funds Ă‘ most of which will go to buy and demolish the Deutsche Bank building. If the money is allocated, it will leave about $1 billion to pay for a competing set of priorities for Lower Manhattan including affordable housing, park space, part of a rail link to J.F.K. Airport and the Long Island Rail Road, a new school, a recreation center and cultural facilities. (Downtown Express)

New York Police Department's Ongoing Fight Against Terrorism - Apr 18, 2004
Hours after terrorist bombs killed 191 people on trains in Madrid, New York City Detective First Grade Mordecai Dzikansky, a bombing expert assigned to Tel Aviv, flew in to the Spanish capital. Within 17 hours, three more city cops joined Dzikansky, and the NYPD's Team Spain quickly connected with Spanish investigators. Less than two hours after the March 11 attacks, cops had poured into the New York subways to step up intensified patrols. Within days, the NYPD made a half-dozen tactical adjustments to how it safeguards the city's transit system, based on what the intelligence cops learned in Madrid. This is how it works in the new, post-9/11 NYPD, as Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly takes the fight against terrorism around the world. (New York Daily News)

Park Used Since 9/11 by Police Returned to Chinatown - Apr 17, 2004
The small stretch of asphalt is surrounded by 1 Police Plaza, Murry Bergtraum High School, a strip mall and the Gov. Alfred E. Smith Houses. Central Park it is not. But even a little bit of open space is better than none, so it was with some fanfare yesterday that residents and community leaders in Chinatown celebrated their reclamation of the park, James Madison Plaza, which the Police Department had been using as a parking lot since 2001. (New York Times)

Schumer Opposes Burying West Street - Apr 17, 2004
The loudest shot to date against the idea of building a short tunnel through Lower Manhattan was fired yesterday by Senator Charles E. Schumer, who said that he opposed the plan if it would divert money from other transportation projects. Mr. Schumer took issue with a plan to turn several blocks of West Street-Route 9A into a covered roadway between the World Trade Center site and Battery Park City. That plan is backed by Gov. George E. Pataki, but nearby residents have opposed it because of the potential disruptions. It is undergoing environmental review, with two others. (New York Times)

9/11 Commissions Find That Warnings of Attack Were Urgent and Persistent - Apr 17, 2004
The attacks of Sept. 11 seemed to come in a stunning burst from nowhere. But now, after three weeks of extraordinary public hearings and a dozen detailed reports, the lengthy documentary record makes clear that predictions of an attack by Al Qaeda had been communicated directly to the highest levels of the government. (New York Times)

Emergency Truck Is One Officer's 9/11 Legacy - Apr 16, 2004
George Howard's legacy weighs in at 12-1/2 tons - and saves lives. Howard, one of 37 Port Authority cops killed in the World Trade Center attacks, created the special rescue unit that handles emergencies at Kennedy Airport. Now his team is ready for plane crashes, hijackings and worse, thanks to the million-dollar rescue truck Howard designed before he died. (New York Daily News)

Deutsche Building To Come Down Piece by Piece - Apr 16, 2004
Later this year, if all goes according to plan, the monolithic 40-story office tower immediately south of ground zero - shrouded in black netting and far too like a 536-foot-high tombstone for many New Yorkers' tastes - will be coming down. Piece by piece. (New York Times)

City Agency Eyes Site of a 9/11 Memorial -- Without Considering Negatives - Apr 15, 2004
A city agency is planning to build a science park on the site of a Sept. 11 memorialÑbut it will "not reveal all negatives" of the project, according to an internal document obtained by The Observer. The cityÕs Economic Development Corporation (E.D.C.) is eyeing Memorial Park, which sits under a large white tent on the corner of East 30th Street and the F.D.R. Drive. Most of the tent is occupied by refrigerated trailers that hold unidentified body parts found at the World Trade Center siteÑ11,499 of these painful relics. The indoor park, which Mayor Michael Bloomberg dedicated at the end of 2002, is lined with shrines to the dead. (New York Observer)

Closing Arguments Begin in Silverstein Insurance Trial - Apr 15, 2004
Closing arguments began after a contentious, 10-week trial that World Trade Center leaseholder Larry Silverstein hopes is the first round in a bid to collect twice the $3.5 billion insurance policy he took out on the center, one for each tower that fell on Sept. 11, 2001. (Associated Press)

Activist Who Lost Mother on 9/11 Snaps Back into Action - Apr 15, 2004
Theresa M. MocGovern has never shied away from speaking her mind. But the death of her mother in the World Trade Center attack stunned her into silence. This public person became very private. Ms. McGovern is an assistant professor at the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, though she is best known as the founder of the H.I.V. Law Project, where for a decade she fought to change policies affecting women and poor people with AIDS. Now, she is snapping back (New York Times)

Development's Effects on Fish and Birds Taken into Account at Ground Zero - Apr 15, 2004
Fish and birds, the smallest stakeholders in the redevelopment of the World Trade Center site, have been accounted for in the final environmental impact statement, which is to be made public today. And they may end up influencing some very large projects. (New York Times)

9/11 Commission Faults CIA in Failure to Act on Terror - Apr 15, 2004
George J. Tenet and his deputies at the Central Intelligence Agency were presented in August 2001 with a briefing paper labeled "Islamic Extremist Learns to Fly" about the arrest days earlier of Zacarias Moussaoui, but did not act on the information, the independent commission investigating the Sept. 11 attacks said on Wednesday. (New York Times)

Group of 9/11 Families Thanks Condoleezza Rice for Testimony - Apr 14, 2004
A group of 9/11 families has released an open letter thanking National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice for her testimony to the commission probing the attacks and saying it should end "the incredible notion" that President Bush knew 9/11 was coming and did nothing. (New York Post)

Extra $20 Million Earmarked for Demolition of Deutsche Bank Building - Apr 14, 2004
The Lower Manhattan Development Corp. earmarked an extra $20 million in public funds yesterday to tear down the Deutsche Bank building next to Ground Zero. (New York Daily News)

Secret Service Worker Accused of Stealing Cars from Ground Zero - Apr 14, 2004
Hundreds of cars were destroyed when the World Trade Center collapsed. But several United States Secret Service cars listed as "crushed," prosecutors said yesterday, were actually stolen by the head of the agency's motor pool at 7 World Trade Center, a retired police sergeant who received a commendation for rescue work on Sept. 11, 2001. (New York Times)

Giuliani: No One To Blame For Missed Clues - Apr 14, 2004
Laying blame for missed clues that could have signaled the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks is ``Monday morning quarterbacking,'' says Rudolph Giuliani, who was New York's mayor at the time. (Associated Press)

Noise and Congestion Downtown Until 2015, Says Revised Environmental Impact Statement - Apr 14, 2004
A decade of development at the World Trade Center site will create noisy, congested streets, cast longer shadows over parks and probably remove some remnants of the original trade center, a new report says. ``Some adverse impacts are inevitable'' in downtown Manhattan until 2015, when the site should be finished, according to the report issued Tuesday by the agency overseeing rebuilding. (Associated Press)

Associate Architect Chosen for Ground Zero Memorial - Apr 14, 2004
A decade after preparing a sweeping plan to revitalize the public spaces at the World Trade Center, the firm of Davis Brody Bond was designated yesterday as associate architect for the memorial that is to be built on the trade center site. The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation also approved a $45 million contract with the Gilbane Building Company of Providence, R.I., to dismantle 130 Liberty Street, a 40-story building near ground zero. (New York Times)

9/11 Commission Criticizes FBI for its Handling of Terror Risks - Apr 14, 2004
The F.B.I. came under withering criticism on Tuesday from the independent commission investigating the Sept. 11 attacks, with its chairman describing new staff reports on the bureau's performance before and after the attacks as an "indictment of the F.B.I." (New York Times)

Lower Manhattan Development Corporation Leans Towards JFK Rail Link - Apr 13, 2004
The remaining $1.2 billion in federal aid that the shepherds of Lower Manhattan's rebuilding have sitting in their treasury is, even in New York's exorbitant terms, no small amount of money. While the Lower Manhattan Development Corp., the agency that controls the money, has been largely silent about how it should be spent, the agency's position can in some ways be gleaned by public statements from Gov. George Pataki and the corporation's president, Kevin Rampe. (Newsday )

Bloomberg Defends Bush's Pre 9/11 Actions - Apr 13, 2004
Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Monday he stands behind remarks he made two years ago -- that it was "ridiculous" to believe President George W. Bush was warned about the Sept. 11 attacks and failed to act. But the mayor didn't repeat the adjective -- and shifted his focus to include calling the first World Trade Center bombing, during Democrat Bill Clinton's presidency, a missed "wake-up call." (Newsday)

Panel Calls For More Environmental Testing at Ground Zero - Apr 13, 2004
In a major breakthrough for advocates, a panel of experts looking at the 9/11 health fallout agreed yesterday to recommend the federal government do more comprehensive testing around Ground Zero. (New York Daily News)

Bloomberg: Drunken Firefighters Dishonor Memory of 9/11 - Apr 13, 2004
Furious about the weekend arrest of two firefighters on DWI charges, Mayor Bloomberg yesterday demanded that the city's Bravest clean up their act - and not dishonor their heroic brothers who died on 9/11. (New York Post)

New York, Feds End Dispute Over 9/11 Medical Claims - Apr 13, 2004
New York will not be held liable for up to $350 million in medical claims arising from the cleanup of the World Trade Center site, since city and federal officials said yesterday that they had resolved a dispute over the matter. (New York Times)

Draft Report by 9/11 Commission Critical Of Attorney General - Apr 13, 2004
Draft reports by the independent commission investigating the Sept. 11 attacks portray Attorney General John Ashcroft as largely uninterested in counterterrorism issues before Sept. 11 despite intelligence warnings that summer that Al Qaeda was planning a large, perhaps catastrophic, terrorist attack, panel officials and others with access to the reports have said. (New York Times)

Bush Defends Response To August Briefing on Al Qaeda Threat - Apr 12, 2004
President Bush said on Sunday that the intelligence briefing he received on Al Qaeda one month before the Sept. 11 strike contained no specific "indication of a terrorist attack" on American soil. He also defended the adequacy of his response to the warnings that terrorists in the United States might be planning hijackings. (New York Times)

Senator Schumer Criticizes Security at Passenger Ship Terminals - Apr 11, 2004
The failure to install high-tech "fingerscanners" at Manhattan's passenger ship terminal leaves a "gaping hole on the Hudson" for terrorists to exploit during the Republican National Convention, U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer said Saturday. (Newsday)

FBI Gives 9/11 Commission Report on Islamic Fundamentalist's Attempt to Co-opt Mafia - Apr 11, 2004
The FBI last week turned over to the panel looking into pre-9/11 intelligence lapses a pile of documents detailing the efforts of terrorist Ramzi Yousef to recruit the American Mafia into a murderous alliance. (New York Post)

9/11 Commission To Question Giuliani in New York - Apr 11, 2004
Former Mayor Rudolph Giuliani will appear before the 9/11 commission when it comes to New York next month, to answer questions about the level of cooperation between federal and local law enforcement. The commission is scheduled to take testimony from Giuliani and others on May 18 and 19. The first date will be devoted to the city's emergency response and the second to the terror plot. (New York Post)

Investigation of Attack on USS Cole Almost Uncovered 9/11 Plot - Apr 11, 2004
The American investigators probing the October 2000 terrorist attack against the Navy destroyer Cole came tantalizingly close to detecting the Sept. 11 plot, F.B.I. and C.I.A. officials now say. But the government missed the significance of a series of clues because some investigators believed that the evidence fit narrowly into their case against the ship bombers and, others say, they did not have access to all the information. (New York Times)

Text: President's Daily Brief, August 6, 2001 - Apr 11, 2004
Following is the text of the president's daily brief for Aug. 6, 2001, "Bin Laden Determined to Strike in U.S.," as provided by the White House. Omitted material is indicated by ellipses. (New York Times)

Pre-9/11 Secret Briefing Released; Said That Al-Qaeda Was Active In US - Apr 11, 2004
The classified briefing that President Bush received 36 days before the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks reported that the Al Qaeda terrorist network had maintained an active presence in the United States for years, was suspected of recent surveillance of federal buildings in New York and could be preparing for domestic hijackings. But the briefing did not point to any specific time or place of attack and did not warn that planes could be used as missiles. (New York Times)

Bush Was Warned Of Attack In August, 2001 - Apr 10, 2004
President Bush was told more than a month before the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, that supporters of Osama bin Laden planned an attack within the United States with explosives and wanted to hijack airplanes, a government official said Friday. The warning came in a secret briefing that Mr. Bush received at his ranch in Crawford, Tex., on Aug. 6, 2001. A report by a joint Congressional committee last year alluded to a "closely held intelligence report" that month about the threat of an attack by Al Qaeda, and the official confirmed an account by The Associated Press on Friday saying that the report was in fact part of the president's briefing in Crawford. (New York Times)

Clinton, Gore Meet With 9/11 Commission - Apr 10, 2004
Former Vice President Al Gore met with the Sept. 11 panel privately Friday, a day after President Clinton told commissioners that intelligence wasn't strong enough to justify a retaliation against al-Qaida for the 2000 bombing of a Navy ship. (Associated Press)

Politics of 9/11 Has Republicans Second-Guessing New York Convention - Apr 10, 2004
When the Republican Party chose New York City as the site of its 2004 nominating convention, the symbolism was apparent: the G.O.P. would be rallying around its nominee in the city that had come to embody the nation's resolve in the wake of the 9/11 attacks, a place where President Bush once stood on a pile of debris at ground zero, rallying the nation to unite in the war on terror. Now, as the administration faces increasing scrutiny of its handling of pre-9/11 terror threats and the wisdom of extending the war on terrorism into Iraq, the question has emerged whether New York is the best place for the Republicans to be gathering this summer. (New York Times)

Some 9/11 Families Skip Rice's Testimony - Apr 09, 2004
While some families of Sept. 11 victims eagerly awaited Rice's nationally televised testimony, others chose not to watch. They said they didn't care to hear her speech or had more pressing daily concerns. (Associated Press)

Rice Knew of Al-Qaeda Surveillance of New York - Apr 09, 2004
Condoleezza Rice told the 9/11 Commission Thursday that the Bush Administration was aware of al-Qaida's "surveillance" of buildings including the Federal Courthouse in lower Manhattan and threats that the building could be the target of a possible terrorist attack. (Newsday)

9/11 Families Rip Rice Over Testimony - Apr 09, 2004
Relatives of the Sept. 11 victims ripped into Condoleezza Rice yesterday after she insisted the Bush administration had no clue the U.S. would be attacked. "Shame," Terry McGovern, a New Yorker whose mother was killed, yelled at the national security adviser during Rice's testimony before the 9/11 commission (New York Daily News)

New Yorkers React Favorably to Rice's Testimony - Apr 09, 2004
A politically diverse panel of New Yorkers assembled by The Post generally gave Condoleezza Rice high marks yesterday for showing grace under pressure during her appearance before the 9/11 commission. (New York Post)

Advisory Committee For Cultural Complex Selected - Apr 09, 2004
The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation yesterday introduced a 24-member Memorial Center Advisory Committee to assist it in developing a cultural complex at the World Trade Center site. (New York Post)

Impact of Ground Zero Still Powerful - Apr 09, 2004
The topic of Sept.11 was a powerful draw on Tuesday. Local older residents flocked to the Inn at HillenVale to hear Carl Askew, Columbus American Red Cross director of labor relations, speak about his experiences during three months at Ground Zero. Askew used his labor and union background to act as the liaison between the ARC and the AFL-CIO union during the three months immediately following the terrorist attacks in New York. During that time, the current Apple Valley resident became deeply immersed in the disaster relief efforts. (Mount Vernon News)

New York Could Be Liable for up to $350 Million in 9/11 Claims - Apr 09, 2004
New York City may be liable for up to $350 million in medical claims as a result of a tangle with the federal government over who is responsible for the claims of workers who cleaned up the World Trade Center site. The dispute focuses on a federal program that would provide $1 billion in liability coverage to New York City and the four construction companies whose workers toiled at the site. They could not get coverage because commercial insurance companies had refused to issue such policies, contending that the financial risk there was too great. (New York Times)

9/11 Commission Grills Rice on Early Warning Signs - Apr 09, 2004
In her long-awaited sworn testimony before the independent commission investigating the Sept. 11 attacks, Ms. Rice acknowledged that the special intelligence briefing that had been requested by Mr. Bush and presented to him on Aug. 6, 2001, at his Texas ranch had carried an ominous title: "Bin Laden Determined to Attack Inside the United States." Under often harsh questioning from Democratic members of the panel, Ms. Rice dismissed the importance of the still-classified August 2001 report that had been prepared by the Central Intelligence Agency, describing it as "historical information based on old reporting Ă‘ there was no new threat information." (New York Times)

Transit Workers Will Be Included In Anti-Terror Training - Apr 08, 2004
Transit workers will take part in anti-terror exercises, police said yesterday - a day after the Daily News detailed union gripes about being shut out of the training sessions. (New York Daily News)

Ten Members of the 9/11 Commission - Apr 08, 2004
The 10 members of the Sept. 11 commission, formally known as the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States: (Associated Press)

Rice to Testify in Front of 9/11 Commission Today - Apr 08, 2004
US national security adviser Condoleezza Rice is set to give her defence of the White House to the body looking into the 11 September attacks. After weeks of refusal, President Bush has agreed to let one of his closest aides testify publicly about policy in the months before the attacks. (BBC News)

Four '9/11 Moms' Keep Heat on 9/11 Commission - Apr 07, 2004
Mashing spinach in her kitchen in East Brunswick, N.J., for a family Seder on the first night of Passover, Lorie Van Auken can hardly have looked like one of the driving forces behind new developments with the 9/11 commission as she cradled a telephone in the crook of her neck and spoke with this writer, firing off a list of angry questions that she wants to ask Ms. Rice. (New York Observer)

Federal Grant Gives $81 Million for 9/11 Health Monitoring - Apr 07, 2004
Firefighters and volunteer rescue workers who toiled at Ground Zero for months after the Sept. 11 attacks will now be eligible for a long-term health screening program paid for by an $81 million federal grant, officials announced Tuesday. (Newsday)

Transit Workers Say They're Being Left Out of Anti-Terror Training - Apr 07, 2004
Transit workers complain they're being left out of NYPD anti-terror training exercises - potentially putting riders in greater danger if there's an attack. Concerns over the Madrid train bombings and a federal warning that New York buses and subways could be targeted prompted union leaders to demand a role in the training sessions. (New York Daily News)

Top Architecture Firms Eye Collaborating Role on Ground Zero Memorial - Apr 07, 2004
Some of the best-known, largest and most prolific design firms in New York are vying to be named associate architect for the World Trade Center site memorial. Technically, the associate's role would be to help Michael Arad and Peter Walker realize their competition-winning plan, "Reflecting Absence," with two voids where the twin towers stood. But the caliber of the firms being considered by the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation suggests that they might also play an influential role in refining the evolving design. (New York Times)

9/11 Charity Will Give Artifacts Back to Fire Department - Apr 06, 2004
A New York charity that draws raves from educators but ran afoul of city fire marshals because of its traveling exhibit of Sept. 11 artifacts has agreed to return some items to the FDNY. (New York Post)

Low Crime Rates in Subway Attributed to Post 9/11 Tactics - Apr 06, 2004
Police are on track to beat last year's historic low tally of subway crimes - and cops are crediting part of the ongoing decline to anti-terror efforts. Crime in all major categories combined is down about 2% from last year, which was the lowest in more than three decades. From January through Sunday night, there were 775 felonies, compared with 789 during the same period last year. (New York Daily News)

Bloomberg: Reopen Statue of Liberty Completely - Apr 06, 2004
A week after Mayor Michael Bloomberg attended a ceremony in which federal officials announced that the Statue of Liberty would remain closed to visitors, he said Monday the statue should be reopened, even if each tourist is escorted by a police officer. (Associated Press)

Senate Committee Seeks Statue of Liberty Foundation's Records - Apr 06, 2004
The Senate committee that oversees charities' compliance with the nation's tax laws requested records yesterday of contracts, staff salaries and other financial information from the nonprofit foundation managing the reopening of the Statue of Liberty. The Finance Committee, prompted by reports that the statue's opening had been stalled because of governmental delays and fund-raising by the Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation, wants the foundation to justify staff salaries that exceed $100,000 and explain any contracts that were awarded without competitive bidding. (New York Times)

9/11 Commission Plans Tough Questions for Justice Department, Federal Bureau of Investigation - Apr 06, 2004
Current and former leaders of the Justice Department and the F.B.I. are expected to come under criticism from the commission investigating the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks at public hearings next week, with Attorney General John Ashcroft and Louis J. Freeh, the former F.B.I. director, being called to account for their agencies' failures before the attacks, panel officials say. (New York Times)

Memorial to British 9/11 Victims Planned for Hanover Square - Apr 05, 2004
Sculptor Anish Kapoor is to create a memorial in New York to the British victims of the 11 September 2001 attacks on the World Trade Centre. The 19.5ft (6m) sculpture, Unity, will form the centrepiece of a memorial garden in Hanover Square, near the twin towers site. (BBC News)

Architect Who Designed Glass Wall for Times Warner Center Will Work on Fultron Street Transit Center - Apr 05, 2004
James Carpenter, 54, whose work includes the astonishingly transparent cable-net glass wall at the new Time Warner Center on Columbus Circle, was awarded a $340,000 contract by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority last week to join the architectural and engineering team working on the Fulton Street Transit Center, which is to be completed in 2007. (New York Times )

Representative Calls For Investigation Into Statue of Liberty Foundation - Apr 05, 2004
U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner called Sundayy for a federal investigation into a non-profit organization that raises funds for the Statue of Liberty that he said misled contributors by telling them their donations were needed to re-open the monument. (Newsday)

9/11 Commission: White House Won't Block Final Report On Security Grounds - Apr 05, 2004
Leaders of the commission looking into the Sept. 11 attacks don't expect the Bush administration to order major changes to the commission's final report on national security grounds (Associated Press)

Charity Displaying 9/11 Artifacts Under Investigation - Apr 05, 2004
A New York charity that runs a traveling exhibit of Ground Zero "artifacts" - including part of a plane, pieces of destroyed buildings and earrings, shoes and eyeglasses belonging to victims - is under investigation by city fire marshals, The Post has learned. (New York Post)

US Investigates How Donations to Reopen Statue of Liberty Were Spent - Apr 05, 2004
Federal investigators have begun an inquiry into the National Park Service's dealings with a nonprofit foundation it relied on to handle the reopening of the Statue of Liberty, according to a government official. The inspector general of the Interior Department, which oversees the Park Service, is investigating how the Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation spent donations it raised for projects at the monument and whether it followed federal guidelines on competitive bidding for certain contracts, the official said. (New York Times)

US Investigates How Donations to Reopen Statue of Liberty Were Spent - Apr 05, 2004
Federal investigators have begun an inquiry into the National Park Service's dealings with a nonprofit foundation it relied on to handle the reopening of the Statue of Liberty, according to a government official. The inspector general of the Interior Department, which oversees the Park Service, is investigating how the Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation spent donations it raised for projects at the monument and whether it followed federal guidelines on competitive bidding for certain contracts, the official said. (New York Times)

9/11 Commission Head: 9/11 Could Have Been Prevented - Apr 04, 2004
The terrorist strikes of Sept. 11, 2001, could have been prevented had the United States government acted sooner to dismantle Al Qaeda and responded more quickly to other terrorist threats, the chairman of the commission investigating the attacks said today, even as the White House sought to dispel the notion that the attacks were avoidable. (New York Times)

9/11 Commission To Decide Whether Bush Inappropriately Held Back Clinton-Era Documents - Apr 03, 2004
The federal panel reviewing the Sept. 11 attacks will determine early next week whether thousands of classified counterterrorism documents from the Clinton administration were unduly held back by President Bush's aides. (Associated press)

Clinton Calls For $570 Million For Tunnel Security - Apr 03, 2004
Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton said Friday that the current wave of terrorism concerns surrounding the nation's railways make it imperative for officials to increase security around New York City's rail tunnels. (Associated Press)

Man Who Left Family Collects On Their 9/11 Cash - Apr 03, 2004
A heartbroken mother whose son was killed in the 9/11 attacks blasted a court ruling that allows her ex-husband - who abandoned the family 30 years ago - to cash in on her son's estate. (New York Daily News)

FBI To Return Paperweight Taken From Ground Zero To Its Owner - Apr 03, 2004
The Justice Department is looking for the rightful owner of a Tiffany globe paperweight taken by an FBI agent from the wreckage of the World Trade Center - the same paperweight that a New Jersey woman whose son died on Sept. 11 claims belonged to her son. (New York Post)

In Storage, 9/11 Artifacts Vulnerable To Elements - Apr 03, 2004
Water, daylight, gravity and salt air have taken their toll as the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey - improvising a curatorial mission no one could have imagined - has transformed an abandoned Tower Air hangar, five miles from the Atlantic Ocean, into a storehouse, conservation workshop, temporary museum and shrine. (New York Times)

City Agencies Spar Over Roles In Future Disasters - Apr 03, 2004
More than two and a half years after the World Trade Center attacks exposed weaknesses in New York City's emergency response system, the city still lacks what many experts say is the most basic and essential tool for handling disasters: a formal agreement governing which city agency would lead the response at the scene of any catastrophic accident or terrorist strike. (New York Times)

Extra Fund-Raising Put Off Statue Of Liberty Reopening - Apr 03, 2004
Millions of dollars held by the nonprofit Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation have long been available for the monument's emergency needs but went unspent. The National Park Service, which is responsible for the landmark, never asked Congress to provide the $2.3 million that they initially estimated was needed to do the work. (New York Times)

Victims Compensation Fund Has Paid Out $2.6 Billon - Apr 02, 2004
The federal compensation fund for Sept. 11 victims has paid out more than $2.6 billion so far, officials said Thursday. The fund, created to compensate those killed and injured in the attacks while protecting U.S. companies from potentially crippling litigation, is scheduled to finish processing claims June 15. (Associated Press)

10,000 Police Officers Train in Terror Preparedness For Convention - Apr 02, 2004
Police officers from across the city played out terrorist scenarios yesterday, from a gas attack in a hotel room to an explosion in a subway in preparation for the Republican National Convention in August. The two-day drill, called COBRA training, is part of a goal of Police Commissioner Ray Kelly to train 10,000 members of the department in terrorist preparedness for the upcoming convention. (Newsday)

Health Concerns Keeps Some Businesses Away From Downtown - Apr 02, 2004
When Gov. George E. Pataki announced plans 21 months ago to move 750 to 1,000 state employees to Lower Manhattan, he said he was doing so to show confidence in its viability as it struggled to rebuild. The only problem is that 425 State Health Department employees do not want to go. They are concerned about health conditions at 90 Church Street, the Art Deco tower at the edge of ground zero where the state is negotiating a lease. (New York Times)

Bush Aide Keep 9/11 Commission From Seeing Clinton-Era Papers - Apr 02, 2004
The commission investigating the Sept. 11 attacks said on Thursday that it was pressing the White House to explain why the Bush administration had blocked thousands of pages of classified foreign policy and counterterrorism documents from former President Bill Clinton's White House files from being turned over to the panel's investigators. (New York Times)

The 'Jersey Girls' Behind the 9/11 Commission - Apr 01, 2004
Kristen Breitweiser was at home in Middletown, N.J., cleaning out closets. Patty Casazza of Colts Neck was dashing to the dry cleaners. Lorie Van Auken of East Brunswick was headed out to do grocery shopping. Her neighbor Mindy Kleinberg had just packed her children off to school. Then came word, Tuesday morning, that President Bush had agreed to allow his national security adviser, Condoleezza Rice, to testify publicly about the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. All at once, the cellphones started ringing and the e-mail started flying and "the Jersey girls," as the four women are known in Washington, were getting credit for chalking up another victory in the nation's capital. (New York Times)

Federal Panel Split On Clean-Up Of Ground Zero - Apr 01, 2004
A panel of experts began its critical review yesterday of the federal government's cleanup of Lower Manhattan after the collapse of the World Trade Center, and immediately found itself torn between the needs of science and the health concerns of residents. The 17-member panel, meeting publicly for the first time, released the outlines of a plan to retest 250 to 1,000 of the 4,167 apartments that were tested and cleaned by the United States Environmental Protection Agency in 2002 and 2003. (New York Times)

Stock Exchange Is Now Policing Public Streets Downtown - Apr 01, 2004
At the present time, a private police force controls the public streets in the vicinity of the New York Stock Exchange," Justice Walter B. Tolub of State Supreme Court wrote last month. "The specter of private police forces patrolling public streets is unacceptable," he concluded, "and private entities may not take the law into their own hands, no matter how well intentioned." (New York Times)

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