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monsoon

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About monsoon

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  1. The head of Division 10 of the NCDOT has said that contractor quotes for performing on the stimulus money projects are coming in low and hence there is more money available for other uses. His theory for the reason for the low quotes is the contractors really need the work so are being more competitive on their bids. He has sent a request to the MPO for recommendations. Regardless of their recommendations, apparently this head gets to make the final decision and it sounds as if he is looking at spending the extra money on the Hwy 73 widening between Hwy 115 and Hwy 21. (Exit 25 in Huntersville) This obviously comes with the support of the local politicians there as it means the town won't have to spend its own money on the project. They also question why this project is 7th on the list when it ought to be first.
  2. Sure. This wasn't front page news as far as I know, and it does say exactly what I said. It isn't CATS fault. CATS is only responsible when ridership goes up, but isn't responsible when it goes down. It's an amazing double standard that goes completely unnoticed by what are otherwise educated sensible people.
  3. Ahh, but wasn't one of their stated goals to get people out of their cars? They never added on, but only if gas prices double. Or are you saying their ridership gains, which were so loudly touted as huge success, were not do to anything that CATS did, but was due to people avoiding high gas prices? i.e. The 2030 Plan continues to fail at the goals put forth as reasons to support it.
  4. From the other topic about aquariums, the thought occured to me that they can take The Park and turn it into a big paintball urban warfare amusement park. They just need to clean the grounds up some, put some fences on it and paint it some complementary garish colors to add to the already decaying look. Perfect for re-creating those guerilla warfare scenarios, first person shooter in real life games, and reliving those scenes from apocalyptic scifi movies where you shoot the various and sundry radiation created mutants and crazed robots. Of course don't leave out the standard cops and robbers stuff. They could do Road Warrior go cart racing on the floors of the parking deck. Should be quite the tourist draw. I can't think of anything else like that in the USA
  5. You can try to look at the minutes of the Mecklenburg MTC meetings that are on ridetransit.org. Sometimes CATS will present ridership reports that are entered into the record. The APTA publishes ridership reports for the transit agencies, but they tend to lag by at least a quarter and the information is dependent upon reporting by the transit agencies. See http://www.apta.com/research/stats/ridership/ You could also try to contact CATS directly. If ridership goes up, CATS does a lot of press releases to the idiotic press in Charlotte which will report whatever they say without question. If ridership is going down, CATS is usually silent on the issue. My guess is that since we have not heard much about CATS, the numbers are no that flattering.
  6. Thanks for taking the time to post the video. I have to say that I was also fascinated by the go karts.
  7. As usual you simply didn't read what I have posted. I never said that housing is built strictly out of need. If I did, then point it out and we will discuss it. I can only wonder if you do this constantly in a vain attempt to avoid the issue at hand.
  8. That is a pointless statement to be honest with you. I am sure a homeless person would like to live in a place such as that. However when judged against what it really costs to own something such as this, the demand disappears. If it didn't there would still be lotteries for the foolish to gain a spot in line to buy one.
  9. LOL. You continue to make logical fallacies. Nobody said we can't protest. But your idea of doing such, "if you can dish it out be ready to receive the same treatment", is nothing but revenge as much as you try to explain otherwise. The community as a whole has better things to do than to go and try to teach a few wing nuts something they are never going to learn. You have proven that some don't get this message and that is fine as I accept that is to be the case.
  10. Sure. Never said otherwise. The point being made however is there isn't enough of them who can afford it, to support these things in downtown. That much is obvious now. There is no practical reason to build a residential skyscraper in downtown, not when so much of it is just parking lots. So what you are talking about are luxury or vanity towers and that is the market that doesn't exist anymore.
  11. Ahh so you are giving "not likely" scenarios Normally to be elegible for maximum retirement benefits, you have to have full time status at a job. I can't imagine someone holding 2 full time jobs for 40 years simultaneously. If this is the research that people here are applauding you for, it just goes to prove to me there is still some unrealistic belief the collapse we have seen in Charlotte isn't normal and somehow all will be reversed and we will be selling condos, and tiny houses near downtown at nose bleeding prices again. If you believe the local media, this will be some time in 2010. Or just several minutes into the future. My guess is this belief is mostly held by those who have a vested interest in this property now.
  12. ^The numbers I posted for NJ firefighters are readily available on-line. I don't know what you mean by our friend Victor but I contend that firefighters from NJ don't get retirement benefits anywhere close to $150K/year. What you are saying is someone making $55K-$65/year somehow used tricks to bump the final year salary to $300K.
  13. You are way off on that one. Maximum salary for a NJ firefighter is around $70K/year. Most make in the $55-$60K range. Retirement benefits for a NJ firefigher are limited to a maximum of 70% of salary and that would occur only if you held the job for 40 years. Otherwise, it's less. Given this guy is only 45, my guess is he doesn't have 40 years service and is going to get the 50% pay out. This means that at most he will get $35K/year for retirement, more likely around $30K/year. (plus medical) Personally I don't think they are paid enough for what they do. However given these numbers, it only proves how insane the real estate market had become. Maybe he was counting on selling off the first home to pay for this one. Unfortunately for him, it would be my guess that plan didn't work out so well either.
  14. The "overall market" excuse for The Park, which this topic is about, doesn't fly. The point being made is the building was unnecessary, not wanted, and was the result of the hysteria surrounding high end properties and especially those downtown. I've point out before the complete idiocy of building skyscrapers in cities with no land pressures and very low population density. Take away the "investment" part of this, now that prices are falling, and the market for these things collapses. I do agree the downtown market has faired relatively well, but that is because the disaster of the collapse of BofA and Wachovia, has come at the expense of great amounts of federal social welfare. What is going on on the shores of Lake Norman, which has experienced much of the same mentality, is really irrelevant to this point.
  15. I am not sure what you said here that disagrees with what I said. Without hysterical buyers willing to plunk down a ton of money for these units, Verna would have never gotten it off the ground. You don't consider the construction of an empty building a problem? Sure he did. And he couldn't get it off the ground until he substantially raised the prices over what he was first going to charge for these units. He could only do that after people started losing their minds, like the firefighter, and pay these kinds of prices. Verna did after all take ~7 years to get this plan off the ground, and did back out of the original pricing scheme, and only went forward at the height of the real estate hysteria downtown. This completely proves what I said. If there was a real market for this building, then some developer would have come in and taken it long ago. It would have been in Verna's self interest to have done this. The problem. Is there is no market for these buildings now. On look over at
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