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Transcript of DOWNTOWN EXPRESS, SEPT. 11, 2014



    Editors Letter


    The funny thing is the inevitable World Trade Center briefi ngs every September didnt seem much dif-ferent this year.

    The optimism was the same, so was the mutual admiration, the con-gratulations, and all of the talk of working well together.

    The difference this year is there was much more truth to many of the proclamations.

    For the fi rst time since the 2001

    attack, part of the 16-acre site is open to the public, thanks to the opening of the 9/11 Museum in May. Yes, the memorial plaza opened three years ago, but the ticketing system denied strolling residents, commuters and the wandering tourist access to the site.

    For better or worse and some nearby residents say things have recently gotten worse a large part of the site is now open.

    It is no longer a plan for the future, its a real place, architect

    Daniel Libeskind, who developed the site plan, said Tuesday at a briefi ng in 4 World Trade Center.

    Libeskind, a Downtown resident who defi nitely doesnt agree with some of his naysaying neighbors, said he walks through the memorial almost every day to get from his home to his offi ce.

    But surprisingly, even with the addition of roughly eight acres of

    The change is real this year at the World Trade Center

    Downtown Express photo by Milo Hess

    It continues to get busier around One World Trade Center, which offi cials hope will open this year.

    Continued on page 6



    Sophia Gasparro was in pre-school when the planes hit the Twin Towers 13 years ago.

    I think it is a really inter-esting thing to grow up in the aftermath, said Gasparro, now a 16-year-old senior at Millennium High School. I feel it is a real thing around all the time.

    Gasparro lives in Park Slope, Brooklyn, but wanted to go to high school in the Financial District. Millennium High School was found-ed in 2002 after 9/11 to bring youth back into the neighborhood, she said in a phone interview, and the schools mascot is a Phoenix, the mythical creature that rises from the ashes.

    Her family spends Sept. 11th with her mothers good friend, who lost her firefighter husband that day. Gasparro says that even when she goes to college next fall, she will make sure to call her moms friend.

    She and three of her friends at Millennium spoke to Downtown Express about their views on 9/11 all said they had vague memories of it in separate phone interviews, even though they were only 3 or 4 at the time.

    Gasparro is interested in study-ing international relations and said that the events of 9/11 are pres-ent when they talk about the U.S. Patriot Act or the Iraq war in her history and government classes.

    Deena Finegold, 17 and a senior, was also at preschool on 9/11. Her father had dropped her off at school and was going to drive her mother to work in the Financial District her office building was right across from the Twin Towers. While on the

    Continued on page 19

  • 2 September 11-September 24, 2014


    The old World Trade Center retail area was the most profitable per square foot in the country, and many Downtowners have been waiting for its return for over a decade.

    Were sorry to deliver bad news on that front. Even though part of the transit hubs retail area is already open to the public, John Genovese, senior vice president of Westfield World Trade Center the firm recruiting tenants for the mall told us this week that the company will wait until the entire hub is open, and will not open any sections early.

    That means the retail opening is over a year away, but given the well-chronicled delays at the $4 billion station designed by Santiago Calatrava, we conceivably could have a new president before anyone does any shopping there (and yes, we think its a safe bet that President Obama will not be impeached and removed from office before 2017).

    Meanwhile its not just the residents who are anxious for stores. During his presentation to Community Board 1 on progress at 3 and 4 W.T.C., Malcolm Williamsof Silverstein Properties included a slide of a New York Post clipping suggesting that Eataly would be opening at 4. Williams suggested it was much more than an idle rumor.

    At the same meeting, Glen Guzi of the Port Authority, which is essentially Westfields landlord, claimed to have no inside info, but he also said, I guarantee youll have a couple of options for Starbucks for sure.

    Genovese laughed when we told him of the guarantee, but made no promises thered be any Venti Lattes at the W.T.C. The only bean

    he threw our way was that someone there would be selling coffee.

    TRIBECA DRONE REPORT If you live in New York City,

    chances are youre not afraid of a drone strike as much as some-one living in, say, Pakistan. Robert Gluckstadt at least wasnt until last weekend, when he says he had his own encounter with one of the high-flying vessels that could have killed him.

    He told us he was reading a book in the park in front of the Citibank building on Greenwich St. near his Independence Plaza apartment last Sunday morning. All of a sudden a drone fell out of the sky, he said.

    He said the drone sounded like a lawnmower when it hit a near-by tree. But it was not dead, he added. It made a tremendous racket on the ground trying to right itself like a wounded animal for ten minutes.

    Disturbed by the spectacle, he told a security guard for the nearby bank headquarters to call the police, which the guard and his supervisor refused to do even as the two pilots of the drone came running.

    With the leverage of a little piece of the drone that he had picked up, Gluckstadt said he then convinced one of the two men to accompany him to the First Precinct, where the officer on duty simply told the drones owner to be more careful in the future and didnt even take his ID.

    I was upset, as I usually am when I talk to the police, he said. Apparently the operators of the drone werent breaking any laws.

    If it was a Monday morning, somebody may have been hurt.

    It was not clear what the men were doing with the drone.

    STREET CLICKING MANPhotographer Scot Surbeck, a

    regular contributor to Downtown Express, currently has an exhibi-tion, Street Seen, on display until Oct. 2 at Soho Photo Gallery, which is actually in Tribeca at 15 White St. Gallery hours are 1 p.m.-6 p.m., Wed. Sun.

    Visit Poly Prep!Learn How Your Child Will Grow in Mind, Body, and Character.

    Lower School (N4th Grade)

    Attend an Open House on our Park Slope campus:

    Reserve your space online

    and learn more about Poly Prep at

    Or, call Admissions at (718) 663-6003

    NuRSeRy & PRe-KtOuRS At 9:00 Am Wednesday, 9/24 Tuesday, 9/30 Wednesday, 10/1 Friday, 10/3 Tuesday, 10/7 Friday, 10/10

    K & 1st GRADetOuRS At 9:00 Am Friday, 9/26 Wednesday, 10/8 Friday, 10/17 Tuesday, 10/21

    Note: 2nd-4th gradetours in late Oct./Nov.

    Polys Lower School 50 Prospect Park West Brooklyn, NY 11215

    Do you remember when _____________ happened downtown?...We do. Visit our archives at

    I N P R I N T O R O N L I N E

    W W W. D O W N T O W N E X P R E S S . C O M

  • September 11-September 24, 2014

    Gina Gibney has devoted her-self to the Downtown dance scene since 1991 when she started her first studio at 890 Broadway in Flatiron. She has since expanded. Now, Gibney Dance has taken over the former Dance New Amsterdam space at 280 Broadway near City Hall, and is renovating it. Gibney sat down with Downtown Express on Thurs., Sept 4, to talk communi-ty, choreography and construction.

    Interview has been condensed and edited.


    Youve expanded from one studio to three to eight. Why take on 280 Broadway?

    There are some practical reasons for us and theres the larger rationale for the [dance] fi eld. There are many things that we were not really able to do at 890 Broadway given the profi le of the building. Within this new confi guration, were able to hone 890 Broadway to be a choreographic center. It is not a good place for really large classes, for really large public assemblies, for performances. So this did give us the opportunity to venture into those areas that weve always been interested in. I think there was a certain amount of confi -dence in our organization because we had managed to do these expansions [before].

    I, for one, and I think that I speak for the field, did not want to see this space lost. So there was a sort of urgency to it, given the time pressures that someone needed to step up.

    What are the opportunities and challenges of taking over DNAs former space?

    [We want] to really expand the number of classes that were offer-ing. We went from having about three classes a week to now [] probably having 60 classes a week. And thatll continue to grow.

    Another really obvious thing, which is completely new for us, is the whole realm of presenting dance. We didnt do that before and were making our first venture into that very soon. We will not only have one theater here, but we will have two more performing spaces.

    Studio C is our newly combined extra large studio. So it will be a class space by day, but at night it will be a really beautiful memorable studio theater.

    Were also making a perfor-mance lab downstairs. It will be ground floor, perfect for instal-lations, immersive performances, film screenings, just