Time Warner Center — the building home to offices and a slew of restaurants like Per Se, Masa, and an upcoming location of Momofuku Noodle Bar — has reopened after an evacuation Monday morning following the discovery of a “potential explosive device” in the property.
CNN, which is also in the building, is reporting that the device was made with a pipe and wires and was discovered in the mailroom. Authorities are treating it “as a real explosive.”
Restaurants like Bluebird London, Masa, and Porter House NY were closed due to the incident, a spokesperson tells Eater, and Whole Foods in the basement was also evacuated. By 11:20 a.m., the whole building was being told to leave.
Update: Shortly before 1 p.m., building management gave restaurants the OK to reenter the building, and Bluebird London and Porter House NY will be reopen at 1 p.m. A spokesperson for Landmarc says the American restaurant is now open, while a Masa spokesperson says it’s figuring out next steps toward reopening.
NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio calls the incident “an act of terror” during a press conference held around 1 p.m.
The situation at the Time Warner Center was clearly an act of terror attempting to undermine our free press and intimidate New Yorkers. But the people of this city have shown time and again that they stand up in the face of terror.— Mayor Bill de Blasio (@NYCMayor) October 24, 2018
Though NYPD has not confirmed the exact location of the package, Vice President Mike Pence and others have confirmed that the package was sent to CNN. CNN anchor Wolf Blitzer reports that the package was addressed to Obama’s former CIA director John Brennan at CNN. But Brennan is an MSNBC contributor, not CNN.
We condemn the attempted attacks against fmr Pres Obama, the Clintons, @CNN & others. These cowardly actions are despicable & have no place in this Country. Grateful for swift response of @SecretService, @FBI & local law enforcement. Those responsible will be brought to justice.— Vice President Mike Pence (@VP) October 24, 2018
#wholefoods @WholeFoods Columbus Circle NYC being evacuated right now pic.twitter.com/VPN0HLJQHF— chet whye (@chetwhye) October 24, 2018
The suspicious package is one of several similar devices to be sent this week to high-profile public figures. Packages were also sent to Barack Obama, the Clintons’ home in upstate New York, and billionaire philanthropist George Soros, known for donating to liberal causes. A fifth has been discovered at the office of Democratic Florida congresswoman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz. There have been no injuries, and federal officials are investigating whether one person or group is targeting them.
The White House called the acts “terrorizing” and “despicable” in a statement. “The United States Secret Service and other law enforcement agencies are investigating and will take all appropriate actions to protect anyone threatened by these cowards,” the statement says.
This is ongoing; stay tuned for updates.
Update: This post has been updated to reflect new information about the incident.