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Wall Street West project looks to keep economy continuity during disaster

| 10.09.2006 | 07:38:045434 |
October 9 '06: To help mitigate any economic damage to the New York Stock Exchange in the event of a large-scale disaster or terrorist attack, state officials in Pennsylvania, led by Governor Ed Rendell, have proposed a "Wall Street West" that would serve as a backup to the NYSE "so that markets can recover quickly in the event of another terrorist strike on New York," the Associated Press reported Monday.
Wall Street West, "is a federal and state-funded program created to develop a total backup solution for New York City financial institutions in the event of a disaster," the website read. The location would be Allentown, PA and other nearby sites. Guidelines for the creation of Wall Street West were issued in April 2004 "to develop business continuity plans and procedures relating to an emergency or significant disruption."

The federal government has approved $15 million for the project, while the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania will give more than $30 million. According to the AP, Wall Street West is in an area that "is far enough away that it would not be affected by an attack, but close enough to allow for real-time transmission of data over fiber-optic lines - a critical requirement of the financial sector."

"The region is also served by a different power grid, transportation network and watershed than New York, as called for in guidelines issued jointly by the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Federal Reserve and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency. ... The nine counties involved in the Wall Street West were chosen because they could potentially be reached by 125 miles of fiber, the distance at which data transmission becomes less than instantaneous."

The first site of Wall Street West will be begin construction in June with a 300,000 square-foot Business Center in Monroe County, PA. An total of 5 million square-feet of office space will be built for Wall Street West.