Thursday, March 25, 2010

The Rebuilding of Ground Zero, Part 98

A deal has been tentatively reached that would enable Silverstein Properties and the Port Authority to build 2 and 3 WTC using a combination of insurance proceeds and Liberty Bonds. The buildings would fill the space in the lower right foreground of the image to the right:
The Port Authority is already building 1 World Trade Center, a 1,776-foot tall skyscraper; a $3.2 billion transit center; the national memorial, and new streets and utilities that serve the site. Mr. Silverstein, who held a lease on the twin towers when they were destroyed and has continued to pay rent to the Port Authority, has the right to build three other towers at ground zero.

Unable to secure financing in the current real estate market or corporate tenants for the three towers, Mr. Silverstein asked the Port Authority to finance them. Under the tentative deal, the Port Authority would finance one of them, a 64-story building on Church Street. The city and Port Authority have already agreed to rent space in the building.

The authority, Gov. David A. Paterson and Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg would agree to secure contributions of equal amounts of money to serve as backup financing for the second, 71-story tower, providing that Mr. Silverstein raises $300 million in cash and signs leases with corporate tenants for a portion of the space, about 400,000 square feet.

All sides have agreed to pool the remaining insurance money from the 9/11 attacks, about $1 billion, and tax-free Liberty Bonds for the two buildings. Mr. Silverstein’s third tower would be delayed until some future date.

The total proposed public investment in Mr. Silverstein’s buildings was still unclear. On Wednesday the various parties were still working out possible limits on development fees Mr. Silverstein could earn.
In a related development, the Flight 93 Memorial in Shanksville, Pennsylvania is on track to be completed by next year's 10th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks.

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