Ground Zero Excavation Slow, Pricey

NY Port Authority faces millions in penalties on delays
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 13, 2008 10:37 PM CST

(Newser) – Ground Zero in New York City is a magnet for patriotism, skepticicm and frustration; underground, it continues to be a very costly challenge. Excavation preparatory to rebuilding is moving so woefully slowly that New York's Port Authority has accrued late fees of $300,000 a day since Jan. 1, with penalties of over $13 million due to Silverstein Properties, which will build two office towers on the site. 

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The delays are typical of the authority, says a former director, "thanks to the bureaucratic maze that exists there." But the current director says “paperwork” isn’t the problem; rather, “it was the challenge of doing a project of this scale in this short a time.” Work on the 6.7-acre “East Bathtub” has cost $250 million thus far. (Read more World Trade Center stories.)

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