INTERNATIONAL: PR consultant sought to drive Ground Zero comms

NEW YORK: The New York City mayor's office is to recruit a PR consultant to handle all comms surrounding the former World Trade Center's site - known as Ground Zero - and its surrounding neighbourhoods.

The role - created as a temporary post - involves managing all PR efforts for the WTC project, which has reportedly been allocated a £1.4m budget and may last up to two years.

The New York City Economic Development Corporation (EDC) announced - on behalf of deputy mayor for economic development and rebuilding Daniel Doctoroff - that the role was up for grabs last week in a bid to improve communication with stakeholders.

'What we are dealing with is a very complex problem - in which there is an unprecedented level of interest - that cuts across agencies at the city, state, and federal levels,' explained Doctoroff.

'There is no one place for people to get information. I think pretty much everyone recognises the need for better, more consistent outreach to stakeholders,' he added.

Potential candidates have been tasked with developing a strategy for collecting and disseminating updates on issues ranging from air-quality and street closures to economic incentives and long-term redevelopment plans.

The winning scheme - which Doctoroff said could represent suggestions from either 'a consortium of groups or a single firm' - will be carried out in part through the creation of a newsletter and website.

The Civic Alliance to Rebuild Downtown New York, a coalition of business community and environmental groups, is also searching for a publicist to promote its Listening to the City forum this summer.

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