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Twin Towers Bulletins

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Michelle Jahn
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« on: February 09, 2011, 01:20:12 pm »

1/26/11 — “Coming Full Circle…” We have been receiving a lot of calls and emails asking what the chances are that we will ever see the Twin Towers back where they belong. To be clear, we at the Twin Towers Alliance have always believed that where they truly belong is exactly where they stood when thousands of people walked through their doors, never to walk out again — standing tall beside a fitting memorial. And if only Governor George Pataki had led, instead of pandering, that is where they would be today. He, and every Governor since, has actually had the executive power to correct a terrible error in judgment — once our national concussion cleared — if they had had the courage and vision to admit the mistakes.

One thing we’ve learned over the past five years of relentless effort is that not only do politicians cover up their own [mistakes], but they apparently feel obliged to cover up each other’s as well, while the public is left out in the cold. A recent comment on the petition expressed the current situation perfectly: “I don’t want to look down from the new WTC and be forever reminded of a sick past.” Fighting Michael Bloomberg’s memorial was not winnable, because there are too many PR dollars manipulating the outcome. But restoring the familiar face of New York — instead of making the world look at the results of botched plastic surgery — is winnable. And that would be the most inspiring memorial of all.

Restoring the skyline with state-of-the-art towers never required going back to the beginning, as officials knowingly tried to misrepresent. That is what the fully designed “Twin Towers II” plan by structural engineer Kenneth Gardner and the late Herbert Belton, AIA, offered. When Ken Gardiner and the directors of the TTA spent the better part of an hour in September, 2008, in the office of Port Authority Director Christopher Ward, it seemed that he was going to keep his word to look into the claims that a transition to the plan the American people much prefer would save billions of dollars and years of time.

If he had done what he said he would do, when the World Trade Center was nothing but contracts and promises — as it was his duty to do — he would have discovered those claims were true. But that would have been inconvenient and would have involved admitting that mistakes were made, which is against their code of omerta.

So where do things stand now that the Freedom Tower is more than halfway up? Over the weekend we received the following message from Alex Davison, a supporter who last summer updated many of the “Twin Towers II” graphics to reflect the newer facade:

“I have been supporting this movement since the minute the North Tower fell. I’ve tried to help in all the ways I can. For example, I made all of those images for you a few months ago. But I’m beginning to wonder (and I know I’m not alone here) if it is possible anymore. One World Trade Center is almost finished, and I don’t think the PA is listening anymore. I refuse to accept the notion that building the twins in New Jersey is an acceptable alternative. If you can, please tell me what you plan to do in the coming months and years.”

We don’t know when the Port Authority has ever listened, but they are not quite as all-powerful as it may seem. We are working on “Full Circle” — our answer to Alex and all who have hoped to see America’s Skyline made whole — which will be posted at the top of the Home page when it is complete. Anyone who wants to see it develop will find it here. Just bear in mind that it may change quite a bit before it is posted. It is being developed at the same time that we are pursuing the LMDC Freedom of Information requests, reaching out to the Governors, and finalizing our book to Washington, which we have been adding to for the past year, and which we will soon launch as the consummation of all we have been doing.

The Twin Towers Alliance campaign to rebuild the Towers is definitely coming to an end. And the mission of the Twin Towers Alliance Foundation is beginning. Because whether the Towers are rebuilt or if they are not, the breakdown in the Social Contract that allowed things to go so wrong has to be diligently examined, understood, and repaired. The very fact that in this tenth anniversary year the documentaries have started and yet there is still no honest inquiry into what happened to rob people of the World Trade Center they wanted, needed, and deserved is a clear warning that something is very wrong.

Meanwhile, either our final maneuvers are going to register and grab the nation’s attention, or not. But anyone who thinks that such a clear-cut case of right overcoming might doesn’t have a chance is misguided. It was reported this week that “New York State and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey are both grappling with severe financial problems, but selling off One World Trade Center to bail them out would be a mistake, according to Port Authority executive director Christopher Ward.”

That may be true, but we finally have two dynamic and savvy Governors who could suddenly wake up to the fact that selling the entire property to the people would do wonders for the two states and be a tremdous net-gain for the country as a whole. If they recognize that soon enough, we could cap the Freedom Tower while it would still blend into the downtown skyline, before it really starts to resemble a tombstone. (Click on the link and give it time to download.)

A day after a Reuters puff piece announced that “Selling One World Trade Center not an option,” the Port Authority had its credit outlook cut to negative from stable by Moody’s Investors Service. “The biggest mistake we would make now would be to sell short now — to think that we could make up either the state’s financial difficulties or the Port Authority’s,” according to Christopher Ward. “This has to be an asset that returns value to the Port Authority for years to come,” he added. But try as they may to inflate their prospects, the fundamentals are against them. Whatever their two or possibly three towers could return pales beside the return-on-investment that would be realized by building new Twin Towers. That could be easily established.

How ironic that Ward warns against selling the Freedom Tower short, while his version of the World Trade Center is selling our whole country short. But he is out of step with the bipartisan mood that was captured at the end of last night’s State-of-the-Union address. As the President reminded us: “We Do Big Things” — and we’ll never get a better chance to prove it.



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