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Thu, Jul 17, 2003 - Page 12 News List

Architect and real-estate chief negotiate over WTC

DPA , NEW YORK

A Berlin-based architect and the American developer who holds the lease to the destroyed World Trade Center met on Tuesday to patch up differences over plans for the site.

Daniel Libeskind of the Berlin Studio architectural firm, who won an international contest to rebuild the center, met with Larry Silverstein to work out an agreement so reconstruction can begin under a timetable set by New York Governor George Pataki.

Pataki has asked that Libeskind's 592m tower in the new World Trade Center be completed by 2006 to coincide with the end of his second, four-year term as governor.

Silverstein, who holds the 99-year lease over the site known as "ground zero," has demanded that the tower be moved from the northeastern corner to the east in the designed plan, closer to a planned transit hub, in order to create more office space.

Libeskind opposed the idea, saying that his winning design should be respected and that his strong vision for the new center, which will have a memorial for the 3,000 people killed by the terrorist attacks, cannot be altered.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which administers main airports, public transportation and the World Trade Center, has asked Libeskind to study Silverstein's proposal.

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