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N.Y. Officials Seek U.S. Help to Reopen Street Shut Since 9/11

A street between New York police headquarters and the Manhattan federal courthouse closed since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks should be reopened to save businesses there, local politicians wrote to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano.

U.S. Representative Jerrold Nadler and four fellow Democrats, including Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer and state Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, wrote to Napolitano today urging the department to work with local law enforcement to help determine how the street, Park Row, can be opened.

“This closure has brought significant hardship for residents,” they said. “Those with cars who live on these blocks have had to show ID to get home, businesses have been negatively impacted because of the decrease in traffic, and many who relied on Park Row as a means to travel between Chinatown and the Financial District has been inconvenienced.”

Residents and officials from Chinatown and other neighborhoods have been pushing for years to reopen Park Row. The city began allowing buses and pedestrians to use it in April 2005 after determining the area’s risk of attack had fallen.

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood met with residents of the area last month and offered his support in getting the federal government to study the issue, Nadler’s office said in a statement.

Amy Kudwa, a spokeswoman for the Homeland Security Department, said in a telephone interview that the department would respond through correspondence and not through the media. Paul Browne, a police spokesman, didn’t immediately respond to a telephone message seeking comment.

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