The Real Deal New York

WTC bonds must sell by end of year or risk delay: Port Authority

April 13, 2011 01:13PM
By Adam Pincus

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Chris Ward and a rendering of 4 WTC

The state funding entity New York Liberty Development that pulled a $900 million bond offering Monday needs to sell the securities by the end of the year or risk stalling the construction schedule of 4 World Trade Center, Christopher Ward, executive director of the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey, said today.

Larry Silverstein’s Silverstein Properties has enough money to fund the project through the end of the year, but the additional funds are needed to be certain that work proceeds into 2012.

“We would need to price those [4 World Trade Center] bonds at least by the end of this year to ensure that construction continues. And we are very optimistic that is going to happen,” Ward said.

Ward was talking with reporters after speaking this morning at a construction industry breakfast forum in Midtown, hosted by the trade group, New York Building Congress.

In addition, he said the Port Authority was deep in negotiation with publisher Conde Nast for about 1 million square feet at 1 World Trade Center. He hoped to have a deal ready to go before the Port Authority board in “the next two or three months.”

That represents another delay. In February, Douglas Durst, the chairman of the Durst Organization — that has agreed to invest $100 million in 1 World Trade Center — said the deal was likely to be completed in March.

“They don’t have to sign by a certain date,” Ward said, “but we would like to get this transaction done sooner rather than later.”

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