Governor George E. Pataki today announced the nomination of Robert P. Balachandran to the Board of Directors of the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation (LMDC). Mr. Balachandran is a Managing Director in the Public Finance Department at Bear Stearns and the former President and Chief Executive Officer of the Hudson River Park Trust.
"Robert Balachandran is a proven leader who will make an outstanding addition to the LMDC Board," Governor Pataki said. "At the Hudson River Park Trust, he oversaw the largest open-space project in Manhattan since the creation of Central Park. Rob’s leadership, vision and experience will be invaluable resources to the Board as we continue our efforts to rebuild and revitalize Lower Manhattan and ensure that New York remains the financial capital of the world for generations to come."
Robert P. Balachandran said, "I am honored to be chosen by Governor Pataki to serve on the Board and look forward to working with Chairman John C. Whitehead, President Kevin M. Rampe and the entire LMDC Board. On September 11, 2001, I stood three blocks away in our Hudson River Park offices and witnessed the greatest tragedy in my lifetime. After working hand and hand with rescue workers and government officials over the weeks and months that followed, it is now a great privilege for me to continue my role in this historic effort to rebuild and revitalize Lower Manhattan."
John C. Whitehead, Chairman of the LMDC said, "Robert is an important addition to the LMDC since his extensive career in the law and years of serving as the Governor’s Counsel and liaison to the Empire State Development Corporation and other state agencies will provide outstanding background for our Board. Most importantly, his experiences during the past five years as the Chief Executive of the 550-acre Hudson River Park, will provide our Board with extremely useful expertise for the LMDC’s efforts in revitalizing and rebuilding Lower Manhattan."
LMDC President Kevin M. Rampe said, "Robert will make an outstanding addition to the LMDC Board. I would like to commend Governor Pataki for making this significant appointment to the Board of Directors. Robert brings a wealth of insight and experience and has been the driving force behind the revitalization effort of Lower Manhattan’s West Side waterfront."
The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation was created in the aftermath of September 11, 2001 by Governor Pataki and then-Mayor Giuliani to help plan and coordinate the rebuilding and revitalization of Lower Manhattan, defined as everything south of Houston Street. The LMDC is a joint State-City corporation governed by a 16-member Board of Directors, half appointed by the Governor of New York and half by the Mayor of New York.
LMDC works in cooperation with its partners in the public and private sectors to coordinate long-term planning for the World Trade Center site and surrounding communities, while pursuing short-term initiatives to improve the quality of life in Lower Manhattan during the revitalization effort.
Mr. Balachandran joined Bear Sterns in February of 2004 after serving as President and CEO of the Hudson River Park Trust since 1999. As President, He oversaw the planning, construction, operation and maintenance of the Hudson River Park, the 550-acre Park consisting of piers, upland and water areas stretching from Battery Park to 59th Street.
Prior to his appointment to the Trust, Mr. Balachandran served as a Senior Assistant Counsel to the Governor since 1995 and played an integral role in the development and passage of legislation creating the Hudson River Park Trust. As part of that effort, he worked closely with state and local legislators, community groups, and City Hall -- winning wide praise for his consensus-building abilities. In addition to the Park legislation, Mr. Balachandran worked on matters concerning public authorities, transportation, and economic development. A former partner of Coppola/Ryan/McHugh, he also served as Assistant Attorney General in 1992 and 1993. He is a Cum Laude graduate of SUNY Albany with a B.A. in Political Science and holds a law degree from Albany Law School.
Mr. Balachandran has been nominated by the Governor to the seat formerly held by Christy Ferer who was appointed to the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Board of Commissioners.
More information about the LMDC is available at www.RenewNYC.com.