NEW YORK CITY-In a teleconference yesterday to Securities Industry Association conventioneers in Boca Raton, FL, New York Stock Exchange CEO Richard Grasso officially pulled the plug on plans to build a new 900-ft.-tall headquarters tower. But the plans are not being totally scuttled, he said. Instead, the exchange will back-burner the build until the city has the chance to further sort out the business chaos created by the Sept. 11 terrorist attack.

“We’ve got to respect the fact that to retain the businesses that were displaced, we’d move them into the building we were about to take down,” he commented. “We can pretty well say that a 900-ft. tower is not a saleable transaction. We’ve got to wait and see–as we have committed to do with the Mayor and certainly the Mayor-elect–what the city’s plans are in terms of rebuilding ground zero.”

Grasso did note that plans for the headquarters building are still alive, but any new build would almost certainly entail a structure shorter than the previous plans called for in an effort to avoid being the tallest building downtown.

He also mentioned that alternative facilities must be created “if the unthinkable should ever happen again.” He noted that processing sites in Brooklyn will be upgraded to serve as alternate trading venues to guarantee that “markets will resume in a short period of time.”

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