Should we sell the Freedom Tower?

From the Home News Tribune:

N.Y., N.J. govs would sell tower at Ground Zero

The governors of New York and New Jersey said Tuesday they support continued construction of the 1,776-foot Freedom Tower but also would favor selling the multibillion-dollar symbolic skyscraper being built at Ground Zero.

New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer, New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine and Mayor Michael Bloomberg appeared together to sign off on the delayed, redesigned skyscraper that has been under construction for more than nine months.

Spitzer, who once called the planned building a “white elephant” that could not be profitable for the government agency that owned the World Trade Center, said after he was elected governor that he would look at the project again.

He said Tuesday that a booming commercial real-estate market and the need to move forward with long-delayed rebuilding at Ground Zero changed his mind.

“We’re confident that this is not only viable, but profitable,” said Spitzer. The federal and state government has promised to lease half of the tower’s office space and the skyscraper — which will cost more than $2.4 billion to build — is on budget, he said.

But Spitzer added, “I don’t have any opposition” to selling the tower, which the Port Authority is scheduled to finish building by 2011. “We will entertain these options if and when they arise.”

Corzine said that selling the tower “would be good public policy.” He said the Port Authority, which is run by both governors and owns airports, shipping terminals and bridges, should stay focused more on transportation than real estate.

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4 Responses to Should we sell the Freedom Tower?

  1. James Bednar says:

    From the NY Post:


    Gov. Spitzer, overcoming some understandable reservations on the Freedom Tower, has decided to go ahead with construction.

    “It is clear that after long delay this project – while it may not have been the one we would have designed – must be built and we must get moving,” he said.

    Not exactly gung-ho, we’d say.

    With good reason: The faulty design, inattention to security, bureaucratic inertia and other missteps by his predecessor have left a void at Ground Zero more than five years after 9/11.

    Pataki’s Pit, as it were.

    Spitzer wasn’t left a lot of options.

    One of them, happily, could be to take advantage of the hyper-hot commercial real-estate market in lower Manhattan and find a private-sector buyer for the Freedom Tower.

    Not so long ago, this would have been a preposterous notion.

    No one, it seemed, would voluntarily return to Ground Zero – certainly no private-sector interests.

    This no longer is the case.

  2. bairen says:

    Let’s sell it and give all state employees a bonus. It’s not fair they don’t get bonuses like those in the private sector do. I’m sure that will stimulate the economy, balance the budget from the extra tax revenues, and keep housing from deflating.

  3. Jamey says:

    Capital idea, Bairen: Those fat bonuses will keep alive the RE markets on the north end of LBI!

  4. UnRealtor says:

    The feckless UN should be moved to the top 50 floors. Should help bring them into focus.

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