Construction on 9/11 museum halted because of fight over money

As museum officials, politicians, family members, rescuers, nearby residents, survivors, real estate and commercial interests and more argue over what the 9/11 museum should contain, the Port Authority and the memorial and museum foundation are fighting over who pays the bills. The planned Sept. 11, 2012 opening has already been delayed until next year and still there is no resolution.  Why haven’t Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey and Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York stepped in to resolve the deadlock, since they run the Port Authority?

Here’s the New York Times story

Construction Frozen in a Fight Over Financing

Published: June 2, 2012

For more than six months, work on the National September 11 Memorial Museum has been at a virtual standstill because of a multimillion-dollar dispute between the foundation creating it and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which is responsible for the construction.

At issue is how much the National September 11 Memorial & Museum at the World Trade Center Foundation owes for work on the surrounding infrastructure and for cost overruns. The Port Authority says the foundation’s share is more than $300 million. The foundation says it owes nothing; it argues that the authority’s delay in opening the memorial plaza has cost it $100 million.

Negotiations are proceeding, but late last year the authority all but stopped approving contracts for work.

The foundation is putting the total budget for the memorial and museum at $710 million, which it says it has raised through private donations and aid from the state and the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation.

But no one expects the Port Authority to absorb the remaining bills, and powerful egos and competing agendas are complicating the negotiations: The foundation’s chairman is Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, while the Port Authority is jointly controlled by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo of New York and Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey.

All sides agree on one thing: there is no way the museum will be finished in time to open this year……

[continue reading]


4 responses to “Construction on 9/11 museum halted because of fight over money

  1. The big concern for me when I hear about these delays is that I have been told repeatedly by senior management of the memorial that the operating policies which prohibit candles and which require security screening while visiting the cemetery have a chance of being re-evaluated once all construction is completed. (In October 2011 I was told the policies would change after construction but in January 2012 that assurance changed to only a commitment to re-evaluate the policies eventually.) Originally, this date was intended I believe for sometime in 2013 when the “Interim Operating Period” was scheduled to end. It seems clear that the date will be much later, and this, I believe, is a strong reason to work on these family services issues now. The direction we move in today, concerning the policies which affect personal memorial at Ground Zero, will determine where we end up in a few years. But it’s hard to get many people to talk about this direction for the future as long as the project is so deeply immersed in political and financial confusion.

    Thanks again for your in-depth articles… it is much appreciated.

  2. Pingback: Comment on “The painful choices behing the making of the 9/11 museum” (Patricia Cohen) | Working Sandbox

  3. This memorial embodies a lot so it’s sad that this is happening over it’s construction. Why not remember what it represents?

  4. Pingback: Delays… in…. museum….. construction…… | Working Sandbox

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