REX’s Performing Arts Center at the World Trade Center may lose federal funding



Construction at the REX Performing Arts Center at Ground Zero could be delayed if the federal government decides to revoke millions of dollars in funding.

After September 11, the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) provided nearly $ 3 billion to the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation (LMDC), the public regeneration program for the region. The LMDC has $ 150 million of this spending subsidy and the group plans to use about $ 100 million of these funds on the bright Ronald O. Perelman Performing Arts Center at the World Trade Center (the Perelman Center for short) .

However, this plan was questioned at a recent LMDC board meeting. The REX project would be built on the Port Authority lands, but the agency says the LMDC owes it money for the work it has done to prepare lower lands for construction. Both parties agree on the existence of the debt, but not on the amount: the Port Authority says it owes $ 67 million, while the LMDC claims it only owes $ 45 million. Dollars. These issues could leave the construction of the Perelman Center in a stalemate, but Crain reports both sides are working towards a compromise at the end of June.

In the eyes of the HUD, the LMDC may have done too much work to bring the World Trade Center area back to life. The neighborhood - with new and new buildings by Calatrava, SOM, Fumihiko Maki, and (soon) BIG - has been restricted in the 16 years since the September 11 attacks. Given its remarkable resurgence, state and local officials say the LMDC has accomplished its fundamental task, so HUD may want its money.

Although the restaurants extend neighborhood activity after 5 hours, the boosters at the Perelman Center say that the area needs a performing arts center to fully cultivate a 24/7 neighborhood. In addition to the shows, the first floor houses a café and a restaurant with extended hours which, according to its architect, anchor the neighborhood by attracting people even in the absence of scheduled shows.