Dreams that the construction of the new World Trade Center plaza would reintegrate the area into the city as a whole are being shattered by the reality of the reason it's being rebuilt. Newly released security plans make the area "a 'fortresslike' environment," just as Lower Manhattan's Community Board 1 feared, and feature "a fortified palisade of guard booths, vehicle barricades and sidewalk barriers," the New York Times reports. "The police plan calls for nine guard booths ... Eight street intersections would be restricted by a double barricade system ... The trade center site would also be bounded by bollards, the barrier posts that have cropped up around many important structures since 2001."
The proposal will cost $40 million, the New York Post adds, and has intensified debate about just how far the security measures should go. Julie Menin, the former community board chairwoman and a candidate for Manhattan borough president, said those nearby "cannot be in complete lockdown," while deputy police commissioner for counterterrorism Richard Daddario insisted, "The campus security plan will not isolate the World Trade Center from the Lower Manhattan community."
In between, one planner put it simply: "It's going to be better for pedestrians and it's going to be worse for vehicles. That's a good thing," he said. "The bad thing is that you have these checkpoints that make it look more like an armed camp or a gated community."