What’s the Problem with the Memorial?

What’s funny about the debate over the World Trade Center Memorial’s cost and fundraising is that only one of them can be a problem. If the cost can be limited to $500 million, as Bloomberg wants, then it is almost paid for: there is already $480 million in private and public funds received or pledged, if one counts the $100 million recently chipped in by the Port Authority.

The real question is who is paying for the $300 million in infrastructure costs anticipated in the latest estimate by Bovis Lend Lease, and carried in The Times and the Daily News. If the memorial foundation is supposed to bear that bill, the fundraising to date looks particularly meek. But the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, the city-state agency overseeing the site’s redevelopment, is pushing to get the Port Authority to bear that cost.

Guess what? Expect more bickering among governmental agencies at Ground Zero.

Matthew Schuerman

Article continues below
More from Politics
STAR OF DAVID OR 'PLAIN STAR'?   If you thought "CP Time" was impolitic, on July 2 Donald Trump posted a picture on Twitter of a Star of David on top of a pile of cash next to Hillary Clinton's face. You'd think after the aforementioned crime stats incident (or after engaging a user called "@WhiteGenocideTM," or blasting out a quote from Benito Mussolini, or...) Trump would have learned to wait a full 15 seconds before hitting the "Tweet" button. But not only was the gaffe itself bad, the attempts at damage control made the BP oil spill response look a virtuoso performance.  About two hours after the image went up on Trump's account, somebody took it down and replaced it with a similar picture that swapped the hexagram with a circle (bearing the same legend "Most Corrupt Candidate Ever!"!). Believe it or not, it actually got worse from there. As reports arose that the first image had originated on a white supremacist message board, Trump insisted that the shape was a "sheriff's star," or "plain star," not a Star of David. And he continued to sulk about the coverage online and in public for days afterward, even when the media was clearly ready to move on. This refusal to just let some bad press go would haunt him later on.
Donald Trump More Or Less Says He’ll Keep On Tweeting as President