WTC Budget Report
This article is from the archive of The New York Sun before the launch of its new website in 2022. The Sun has neither altered nor updated such articles but will seek to correct any errors, mis-categorizations or other problems introduced during transfer.
Governor Pataki and Mayor Bloomberg are expecting a report tomorrow from a construction executive whom they tapped last month, Frank Sciame, to figure out how to build the World Trade Center Memorial at the original budget of $500 million.
Mr. Sciame has been meeting with advisers and consultants, including Roland Betts and Peter Lehrer, who had been heading a separate committee reviewing the design for the World Trade Center Memorial Foundation.
The process is drawing criticism even before Mr. Sciame delivers his recommendations, which may include significant changes to the memorial design. The chairman of the City Council’s Lower Manhattan Redevelopment Committee, Alan Gerson, penned an open letter lambasting “undemocratic decision-making” by top officials and offering a series of proposals that he says would maintain the original design of the memorial while keeping costs down.”I’m very concerned that we not redesign the memorial behind closed doors using the budget as a false excuse,” Mr. Gerson said.
Mr. Gerson said officials should first evaluate safety issues at the memorial quadrant, which would avoid future cost overruns if security gaps were overlooked. Mr. Gerson is also backing suggestions to remove basic infrastructure costs. An LMDC spokesman responded by saying Mr. Sciame’s recommendations would be made available for public comment and review after they were given to the governor and mayor.