Leaders discuss whether to demolish or redevelop World Trade Center

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wwltv.com

Posted on July 2, 2013 at 12:38 PM

Updated Tuesday, Jul 2 at 5:25 PM

WWLTV.com
Email: webteam@wwltv.com | Twitter: @WWLTV

NEW ORLEANS - Whether the World Trade Center on the New Orleans Riverfront would be demolished or redeveloped was the center of the conversation between city leaders on Tuesday morning.

The discussion over the three very different proposals was standing room only at City Hall.

Before the meeting, Gatehouse Capital submitted their idea to save the building and held a rally. They want to restore it and fill it with hotel rooms and apartments.

The Burch Group envisioned a location with hotel rooms, office space, apartments and a retail center.

The Tricentennial Consortium wants to tear it down and make it a tourist attraction.

The debate focused on two issues: whether it should be torn down or redeveloped and who should have access to it.

"Whether or not such a site should be turned over to private, for-profit use, or whether every possible option for public use should be explored and exhausted," said Toni Rice of the New Orleans Multicultural Tourism Network.

"This is public space. It belongs to every citizen. And, I cannot imagine taking something that is public and turning it into something that is private," a committee member said.

"What a tragedy this will be to tear down this majestic, artistic, historic building that is a major and beautiful part of our city scape for such a very small green space," another committee member said.

Members of the WTC Redevelopment Committee were instructed to submit questions by July 10, and the next meeting was set to be held on July 30.

The committee is expected to recommend a proposal by mid to late August.

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