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Developer Stalls, Looks to Port Authority on 3 World Trade

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TWC News: Developer Stalls, Looks to Port Authority on 3 World Trade
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As the September 11th Memorial Museum marks its debut, the development at the World Trade site is hitting some stumbling blocks, especially when it comes to one building. NY1's Jon Weinstein filed the following report.

One World Trade Center is nearing completion, and the office buildings known as 4 World Trade and 7 World Trade are open for business. What’s happening at 3 World Trade Center, however, remains a major question mark.

Right now, construction is stalled at 8 stories and developer Larry Silverstein wants the Port Authority to pony up $1.2 billion in loan guarantees or he says he can't move forward.

"There are so many benefits to the Port, so many financial benefits to the Port that come into place as a result of doing this deal. It makes sense for them to do it, so they want to get it done," says Silverstein.

Not everyone sees it that way though.

Some members say its time to end the subsidies for commercial buildings and for Silverstein. They want to refocus on the Authority’s core mission of transportation infrastructure, especially in light of the Bridgegate scandal. 

Some have said Silverstein should put more of his own money into this. But he points to the billions he's given the Authority from his 9/11 insurance settlement and says he's risked a lot.

"Skin in the game? There's a ton of skin in the game all over this place, and very significant skin. In addition, we've only been at this 13 years trying to get this thing done. So it's been a long haul, but we're confident at this point," Silverstein says.

Silverstein says they’ve already signed up one anchor tenant for 3 World Trade: advertising firm GroupM. 

With millions of square feet in office space available at other buildings in the area, including on the World Trade Center Site, though, filling another building is a concern for many on the Port Authority board who worry the public’s money is at risk. 

Silverstein says this new deal protects against that.

"If you build a good quality office building, with good mass transit, in a good location with space that people can use, it's gonna rent," he says.

The next chance for a vote on the 3 World Trade Center proposal is the next Port Authority Board Meeting. That is on May 28.

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