The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, the joint State-City corporation formed to oversee the rebuilding and revitalization of Lower Manhattan, announced today the creation of two additional Advisory Councils. The Councils provide input to the LMDC on issues of concern to their respective constituencies, while also helping to formulate goals for the future of Lower Manhattan.Meetings of the previously announced Advisory Councils are ongoing, and today's announcement brings the total number of Councils to seven: Families; Residents; Arts, Education and Tourism; Restaurants, Retailers and Small Businesses; Commuters and Transportation; Development; and a General Advisory Council comprised of government officials, business leaders and heads of major civic organizations. Additional Advisory Councils representing Financial Services Firms and Professional Firms will be announced next week.LMDC Chairman John C. Whitehead said, "As we work to revitalize Lower Manhattan, it's important that the many different individuals and groups affected by the September 11th attacks have a voice in the process. The input of the Advisory Councils is already proving invaluable in identifying present concerns that should be addressed and future goals that could be pursued. I want to personally thank all of the dedicated men and women who have agreed to serve on the Councils. Their work will play a pivotal role in the renewal of Lower Manhattan."Governor George E. Pataki said, "The driving force behind the revitalization of Lower Manhattan will be the ideas and suggestions of countless individuals who were affected by this tragedy. The Advisory Councils ensure that the revitalization process is as inclusive as possible and draws upon the creative energies of a wide cross-section of New Yorkers. I want to thank the Advisory Council members for agreeing to perform this important work."Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg said, "The creation of these additional committees -- along with the recent selection of top-quality staff - will enable the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation to move forward with confidence and skill when thinking about how to rebuild Lower Manhattan. It is especially important that everyone who has an interest in Lower Manhattan have a voice in the planning efforts and these committees are a crucial step."Deputy Mayor Daniel Doctoroff said, "The cooperation between the City and State has been extraordinary, and now with the addition of these advisory groups, our collaborative work will prove vital in ensuring the successful rebuilding of Lower Manhattan."Empire State Development Corporation Chairman Charles Gargano said, "I'd like to applaud the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation for appointing these additional Advisory Councils. Under the leadership of Governor Pataki and Mayor Bloomberg, New Yorkers continue to inspire the world. These Advisory Councils will allow New Yorkers to have the input they deserve and will enable the residents of this city and state to preserve the great spirit of unity we have had in responding to the challenges presented to us by the events of September 11th."Senate Majority Leader Joseph L. Bruno said, "The impact of the devastation of Lower Manhattan is so broad that we must look at revitalization from every angle. The creation of new advisory councils will ensure a thorough process and fresh ideas and recommendations on what can and should be done to rebuild and revitalize. I look forward to appointing members of the Senate to participate on these advisory councils so they will have a voice on the future of Lower Manhattan."Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver said, "Over the past five months, I have worked to ensure that the concerns of my constituents in Lower Manhattan are addressed in any plan to rebuild our community. I applaud the LMDC for creating Advisory Councils that will provide residents a strong voice in the rebuilding process. I look forward to working with the LMDC and the Advisory Councils to restore Lower Manhattan to its position as the greatest place in the world to live, work and visit."LMDC President Lou Tomson said, "Under the leadership of Governor Pataki and Mayor Bloomberg, a tremendous spirit of optimism about the future of Lower Manhattan has taken hold in New York City. The Advisory Councils are a means to translate that optimism into tangible ideas and goals for LMDC to consider. The Councils give a voice to the concerns and aspirations of the groups they represent, and their input is essential to the success of this process."The Advisory Councils are charged with communicating concerns and issues to the LMDC Board on an ongoing basis throughout the redevelopment process. Two or more Board members preside over each Council. The LMDC will call upon the members of the Advisory Councils to reach out within their constituencies to solicit broad input. To ensure participation by government officials and major civic organizations, a General Advisory Council was also created. Each of the members of this General Advisory Council may participate as ex-officio. The Residents Advisory Council and the Arts, Education, and Tourism Council have already met, and the remaining Councils will be holding initial meetings over the next several weeks.The two Councils that were announced today are:* Transportation and Commuters: The September 11th attacks severely damaged and disrupted the transportation infrastructure of Lower Manhattan. The impact has been felt not only by residents and businesses, but also by the thousands of individuals who rely on that infrastructure to commute into Lower Manhattan. This Advisory Council will focus on developing goals for restoring and enhancing the transportation infrastructure in Lower Manhattan. It will be co-chaired by Lew Eisenberg, Howard Wilson and Bob Harding.* Development: The revitalization of Lower Manhattan will require a tremendous amount of collaboration and coordination between the public and private sectors. The Advisory Council will serve as a forum for the development community, civic and labor organizations, and environmental groups to provide professional advice and expertise on key matters as they relate to rebuilding in Lower Manhattan. It will be co-chaired by Paul Crotty, Ed Malloy and Roland Betts.The five Councils that were previously announced are:* Families: The main focus of this Advisory Council will be to listen to and seek input from victims' families. Their input will be invaluable to the LMDC on a wide range of issues, including the creation of an appropriate memorial.* Residents: Retaining and attracting businesses and residents to locate in Lower Manhattan is critical to economic renewal. The Residents Advisory Council will provide a forum for residents and members of the local community board to discuss concerns, such as quality of life issues, public safety concerns, transportation, road repairs, construction disruptions and the ongoing cleanup.* Restaurants, Retailers and Small Businesses: September 11th affected the small business community in ways separate and apart from the broader financial community. For example, these businesses rely heavily on foot traffic to thrive. This Advisory Council will focus on issues and concerns of the small business community throughout Lower Manhattan.* Arts, Education and Tourism: Arts and cultural institutions generate economic activity, create a better quality-of-life and will contribute greatly to the revitalization of Lower Manhattan. Encouraging tourists and cultural enthusiasts to visit the theaters and the many museums in Lower Manhattan must be emphasized. The Council will work with the various organizations and academic institutions to ensure their continued presence and examine ways to expand, promote and market the cultural assets of Lower Manhattan.