The management of Ground Zero will not change hands.

New York City officials decided not to hire San Francisco construction giant Bechtel Corp. to replace the city agency for the management of the $2.5 billion cleanup effort.

The Department of Design and Construction will continue to oversee the four major contractors who have been on the project since the beginning, including Turner Construction, Bovis Lend Lease, Amec and Tully Construction.

Last month, New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani invited Bechtel Corp. and Bovis-Lend Lease to submit comprehensive proposals for the role of project manager. The Federal Emergency Management Agency and Army Corps of Engineers, however, advised New York City officials not to bring in a private construction firm. Instead, they suggested that the city continue to manage the cleanup and recovery efforts.

“New York City decided to stick with the city agency that has been managing the cleanup effort since Sept. 11,” said Bechtel spokesman Alexander Winslow. “We respect and accept their decision.”