The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation today released a draft Funding Allocation Plan to guide the allocation of remaining LMDC funds. The draft Allocation Plan articulates principles and objectives, priorities, and allocation categories for the remaining LMDC funds. The LMDC also released a report detailing the direct correlation of major themes of public input received over the past three years and the projects funded by the LMDC to date. The report and plan were submitted to both Governor George E. Pataki and Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg as called for in the Governor’s November speech before the Association for a Better New York (ABNY).
The report, "Guiding the Process: The Public Dialogue and Lower Manhattan Revitalization Initiatives," demonstrates how the public discourse shaped the funding process thus far. It details all of the funding allocations made to date as well as summaries of the public dialogue received at LMDC-sponsored and other public events, comments submitted in letters and via the internet, position papers and letters prepared by civic organizations representing a range of interests, and comments and proposals presented by elected and appointed officials.
The Allocation Plan was guided by over 75 public meetings and tens-of-thousands of public comments. The draft Allocation Plan lays out a framework for allocating the remaining funds creating principles, priorities, and allocation categories. The Plan established a set of principles and objectives to determine eligibility or ineligibility for remaining LMDC funds. The draft Plan is being offered for public comment through May 1, 2005 and will be finalized after further incorporation of the public dialogue. Once the Allocation Plan is finalized in upcoming months, the LMDC Board of Directors will begin to approve Partial Action Plans (PAP) that will include specific projects recommended for funding consistent with the Allocation Plan. There will be additional opportunities for the public to comment on particular projects that are recommended for funding through the PAPs.
"From our inception we have continuously turned to the public for their input and the release of this draft Plan demonstrates our ongoing commitment to ensuring that everyone affected by the attacks of September 11th has a chance to have his or her voice heard, " said LMDC Chairman John C. Whitehead. "We encourage the public to actively and meaningfully participate by commenting on the draft Plan."
"We welcome the opportunity to hear from the community on the draft Allocation Plan," said LMDC President Kevin M. Rampe. "As a vital part of our rebuilding and revitalizing plans, the LMDC has been gathering valuable input for the past three years from the many constituencies involved with Lower Manhattan. We have received tens-of-thousands of public comments to date from individuals all over the world regarding the creation of a memorial and the rebuilding of the World Trade Center site and beyond. The public dialogue has played an integral role in guiding all of our efforts in the rebuilding and revitalization of Lower Manhattan."
The Draft Allocation Plan sets forth the following objectives:
- Create a fitting memorial to those lost on September 11, 2001 and February 26, 1993, that will honor the victims and forever respect this place made sacred through tragic loss;
- Invest in public infrastructure at the World Trade Center site that will enable and trigger the private investment needed to sustain and enhance Lower Manhattan, including commercial and cultural development;
- Develop Lower Manhattan with a focus on the vital components of a diverse, mixed-use community such as arts, culture, residential, commercial, retail and civic amenities;
- Create a connected community that links the neighborhoods within Lower Manhattan with new or enhanced public spaces, builds upon its natural assets, draws upon its resources, and improves the pedestrian experience; and
- Implement a comprehensive, coherent plan for transit access that better connects Lower Manhattan to the region and the world.
The Draft Allocation Plan also provides the following principles that generally exclude projects from eligibility (in no particular order):
- Venture capital risks
- Relief of previously existing commitments or debt
- Operational funding (instead of capital and planning funding)
The following categories (in no particular order) set out priorities that have been identified by the LMDC:
- Memorial complex
- WTC site (including public infrastructure)
- Planned high-impact, large-scale, off-site initiatives
- Long Island/JFK Rail Link
- Broader Lower Manhattan recovery and revitalization projects
The LMDC will host a public forum on the report and draft Allocation Plan on Wednesday, April 27 at 6:00 pm at the U.S. Customs House at 1 Bowling Green. "Guiding the Process: The Public Dialogue and Lower Manhattan Revitalization Initiatives" and the Draft Funding Allocation Plan can be viewed in their entirety at www.RenewNYC.com. LMDC will be accepting comments on the draft Plan through May 1, 2005 by email on www.RenewNYC.com or in writing to:
Lower Manhattan Development Corporation
Attn: Draft Funding Allocation Plan
One Liberty Plaza, 20th Floor
New York, NY 10006