Posted: 10/13/2005 11:33:08 PM EDT
The un building is not up to code, lets have the damn thing demolished and send the thieves to france where they belong
U.N. Looking for Cheap Temporary Space
EDITH M. LEDERER
Associated Press Writer
October 12, 2005
UNITED NATIONS -- The United Nations is looking at everything in its search for cheap temporary space -- islands, cruise ships, and even large tents. And Brooklyn is definitely still in the running.
U.N. Assistant Secretary-General Louis Frederick Reuter IV, who took charge of the U.N.'s renovation and relocation four weeks ago, said the world body is scrambling to find temporary headquarters following the New York State legislature's refusal to give the go-ahead for a new building.
The sprawling U.N. headquarters complex, overlooking the East River, was considered modern when it was constructed 50 years ago but now violates most New York City fire and safety codes and desperately needs renovation.
The 38-story Secretariat building has no sprinkler system, is packed with asbestos and loses about 25 percent of the heat pumped into it in the winter.
But the cost of renovating the building, and moving elsewhere for three or four years during the overhaul, has become a major factor following the legislature's rebuff and Reuter said he wants to stay as close to the proposed $1 billion overall budget as possible.
Moving to locations in midtown Manhattan near the United Nations would cost between $400 million to $425 million, compared to the original estimate of $100 million, he said.
U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan had revealed in May that the United Nations had found commercial space across the East River in Brooklyn that could serve as a temporary home during the renovation.
"We're looking at everything," Reuter said, adding that Brooklyn hadn't been ruled out. "We'll go anywhere if we can afford it. We're looking at boats, barges, islands, tents. We're looking at nonprofit space. We're looking at cheap space."
Reuter said he had made his first presentation to the U.N. General Assembly budget committee on Thursday. He expects to come back with a report in November and a General Assembly decision is expected at the end of the year.