Following a self-imposed deadline of Thursday to come up with a road map forward on the World Trade Center, Mayor Bloomberg is asking for at least a few more days to figure things out. From a statement his office just sent out:
Governor Paterson, Governor Corzine, Speaker Silver and I spoke today, and – together with Larry Silverstein and the Port Authority – we agreed to extend the conversation through the weekend. Everyone remains committed to finding a resolution. We’ll have another update on Monday.
The project has been gripped by an impasse that threatens to further delay much of the site, as the numerous stakeholders fight over who will put up money to finance two office towers. Last month, the mayor called for all the stakeholders to come up with a general resolution by Thursday, though, at least as of the morning, the sides appeared to be quite far apart, as neither the Port Authority (controlled by Governors David Paterson and Jon Corzine) nor the city were willing to put up the hundreds of millions of dollars needed to finance a second Silverstein tower.
The Port Authority has not moved much from its prior position, which has been to finance one tower in which it is already a tenant, so if the agency is indeed going to put up any more money—as private developer Larry Silverstein and city officials are calling for—the decision would be made by the two governors. Neither have shown much willingness to spend further, and even if Mr. Paterson were compelled to spend more (politically, the project falls in his turf, and further delays could reflect poorly upon him), it would seem there’s little political benefit for Mr. Corzine agreeing to added funds.