Dialogue about the direction of security plans for the World Trade Center area appears to be opening up, as the New York City Police Department’s new commissioner Bill Bratton takes a different tack than his predecessor.
Bratton’s first meeting with Port Authority officials this week took place in their offices — a symbol of the department’s new openness, participants said.
“It’s a new day,” one official told DNAinfo. “Now we hare having conversations.”
The NYPD is charged with protecting the World Trade Center site under a memorandum of understanding reached in 2008. The department has since drawn Port Authority’s ire over plans to shield the site with barriers, police guard booths and long sally ports where cars could be examined for explosives — measures the PA argued would discourage business and traffic flow in the area.
The PA attempted conversations with former commissioner Ray Kelly about reducing the police footprint in the area as its revival moved forward, but the NYPD reportedly turned a deaf ear. Finally, frustrated PA officials opted to wait and deal with Kelly’s successor, who they hoped would be more open to negotiation.
“Let’s just say, there’s a decidedly better environment for discussion now,” a PA official told DNAinfo. [DNAinfo] — Julie Strickland