Toll hikes on the George Washington Bridge and the Holland and Lincoln tunnels, pushed by Port Authority of New York & New Jersey chiefs, are a means to cover up wild overruns in costs at the World Trade Center site, the New York Post reported. Rebuilding the site will apparently cost about $2 billion more than was forecast 2008 in the official financial plans by agency head Chris Ward.
“Everybody knew that it wasn’t the full numbers,” said one expert on the Port Authority’s financial problems. “Everybody knew the numbers were off from the start.”
According to documents obtained by the Post, construction has gone over budget by $186 million at Silverstein Properties’ 1 World Trade Center, work on the transportation hub has run $200 million over budget and other work on the site’s infrastructure has surpassed expected costs by $422 million.
Overruns could swell to almost $2.7 billion if the agency fails to re-coop $650 million in costs from the 9/11 Memorial Foundation, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and the state Transportation Department, the Post said. [Post]