Downtown Development Scams

In answer to a comment on the post Calling All Property Rights Advocates
I was not referring to the Wachovia Building; however, I believe that the Cement Park that was touted as a gift to the city, but is owned by a private non-profit, was built solely to help sell the Wachovia Building. Check out the biggest promoters of the park. I tried unsuccessfully for years to find out how much money the City of Greensboro contributed to the project, including lighting, curbs, sewers, sidewalks, etc. The park is maintained primarily with tax money.

Now, back to the original comment: One property to which I was referring was a city-owned, block-long area between McGee Street and Smothers Place that was sold to a developer for around $90,000 and I understand is now up for sale for around $400,000 because the project that he promised was never completed.

Another property sold without prior knowledge of the public was part of the parking lot in the 300 block of S. Elm Street and allowing the builder of the proposed development to rent specific parking spots for his tenants and customers. Other business owners cannot rent spaces there even on a "when available" basis, but this one building owner can rent individual spaces exclusively for his tenants.
Several downtown property owners have tried to purchase part or all of that lot. Their efforts were refused and then it was sold to a developer without public knowledge. A new building will be erected next to it on a lot where the old Mantleworks building stood before it was struck by "renovation lightning" and had to be demolished.
I think that if this builder wants parking for his customers, he could have incorporated it into the new building.
And did anyone notice that the new "guildelines" will not go into effect until this out-of-place building is completed?

Favoritism and underhanded deals are the rule rather than the exception in Greensboro.

One downtown success story is the old bank building on the corner of Washington and Elm streets. I think that it was purchased without incentives and has been renovated one floor at a time by the owners. Another is the building on the SW corner of McGee and S. Elm streets. An old building was renovated by one family and is now a bustling spot containing several restaurants and pubs. Another is the small business center in the old Blue Bell Building at the corner of Lee and S. Elm.


triadwatch said...

don't forget the $1,000 payoffs to the city council from a particular Political Action Committee formed by one person.

Anonymous said...

And the beat goes on.