"To reach its full potential by 2020, Downtown needs investmentnow, both public and private," Jack Nyman, director of theinstitute, tells GlobeSt.com. He says there needs to be investmentin Lower Manhattan's transportation infrastructure and in newresidential and commercial space, as well as improving the area'sappearance and functional amenities. The result of carrying out along-term vision for Downtown could be "one of the nation's greaturban jewels," according to the report.

"We feel the highest priority is to complete the World TradeCenter sites, and given long lead times, we recommend to startbuilding now," Nyman says. Large-scale commercial projects "can'tbe flicked on like a light switch" in response to an upsurge indemand, he adds, but must be built in anticipation of future needs.In fact, the report calls for six million square feet of new officespace Downtown above and beyond what the WTC development willproduce.

The report was prepared by a team that includes representativesfrom Baruch, New York University and private companies includingReal Capital Analytics, Grubb & Ellis and Sam SchwartzEngineering. It discusses six principles that its authors believeare essential to Lower Manhattan's future. They include:reinforcing the area's "historic urban structure" and building asustainable future for Downtown; creating new housing units toaddress population and household growth; creating new class Aoffice and retail space; connecting Downtown to the region andworld via transportation links; emphasizing Lower Manhattan'sorigins and maximizing "access to the water's edge"; and creating a24/7 environment that emphasizes education and culture as well asentertainment.

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Paul Bubny

Paul Bubny is managing editor of Real Estate Forum and GlobeSt.com. He has been reporting on business since 1988 and on commercial real estate since 2007. He is based at ALM Real Estate Media Group's offices in New York City.