The man in charge of massive renovations at the United Nations' headquarters in New York says the final cost will be nearly $2 billion _ about 4 percent over the original budget.
New York architect Michael Adlerstein tells the AP that the major makeover of the 60-year-old complex is well on its way, despite having been slowed by extra security measures.
The pneumatic tubes and toxic asbestos are gone. Blast-proof panes are replacing the original windows to address terrorism concerns.
The work has required more than a little diplomacy. Several times, members of the powerful Security Council sought to halt the demolition because it was interrupting their meetings.
Adlerstein said all work should be completed before the U.N. General Assembly's annual ministerial meeting in September 2014.