jliv

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About jliv

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    Whistle-Stop

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    bearosmith

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    London/Orlando

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  1. jliv

    Union West at CV| Creative Village | 15 Stories

    Trampa? Is that the sister city to Whorelando? [emoji23][emoji23] Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  2. jliv

    Amazon HQ #2 To Orlando?

    Not to get all excited about every rich industrialist who passes through Florida on holiday, but this was an interesting sighting on Saturday: https://www.thenextmiami.com/jeff-bezos-parties-in-miami-over-labor-day-weekend-ahead-of-hq2-decision/. In my fantasy world, Jeff is knocking around his old stomping grounds in Miami, getting ready for the biggest economic development announcement for Florida since Walt Disney World, and...ah no, the smoky haze lifts from my pipe dream as the announcement is made from Northern Virginia.
  3. jliv

    Lake Nona - Medical City

    I always laugh when cities tout the number of jobs these fulfillment centers create, because I'm thinking of an Amazon fulfillment center as 10 Wal-Marts melded together, WITH ROBOTS INSIDE. A fulfillment center is not a value creator or an export generator; it is a logistics center there to mostly serve Central Florida customers. Lake Nona lost Sanford Burnham and got THIS instead. Grumble.
  4. jliv

    The Brightline

    Some good points here. My understanding of FEC's strategic objective with AAF/Brightline was to create new value with some of its real estate assets, using rail as part of the proposition. The problem is, it's not doing much in Orlando on that front, as the asset there isn't theirs, but...drum-roll...a taxpayer-funded "intermodal transit center" that sites empty, much like Gov. Scott's list of ethics. Of course, the prospective bond buyers are obviously reacting the same way as you and I, and giving the value proposition the "stinky side-eye". The Brightline trains are nice, though. I rode them in April, and found the service to be a step up from the services I use every day here in the UK (and across Europe). I'd like to see something like it to succeed, but I don't think you can do it without significant government support, or clever investments in the land assets around the train stations.
  5. jliv

    Downtown Orlando Project Discussion

    It looks like Finfrock is the proposed "design-build" contractor for the building. Lots of modular pre-fab built off-site, which is reflected in their designs.
  6. jliv

    Amazon HQ #2 To Orlando?

    As I called it on this very board last year...;)
  7. jliv

    Comparing Orlando...

    One thing that isn’t mentioned when we talk about Nashville, Atlanta, and Charlotte: all three are beneficiaries of aggressive recruitment by state agencies with tax incentives, bolstered by a state income tax. It’s why all those Marvel/Disney films are shot in Fayette County, GA now, why Charlotte can attract back-office financial services support ops, and Nashville has attracted high-profile corporate HQs. It’s pretty frustrating, because Orlando (the city and the MSA) was quite a buzzy, exciting place in the 1990’s. Perhaps I was seeing it through the lenses of someone in their early 20’s, but I have fond memories of clubbing at Club Firestone, having a cappuccino at YabYum, or celebrating with Irish footie fans during the World Cup matches. I also remember watching it lose that buzz through the 2000’s. ‘Buzz’ is an intangible, and sometimes fuelled by unsustainable hype, but it does matter. What happened? Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  8. jliv

    Downtown Orlando Project Discussion

    The architecture is not daring because the clients are not daring. There are some "starchitect" buildings in the greater Orlando area, but mostly on Disney property. The buildings downtown were built for local banks, law firms, and government agencies; the architecture is a reflection of the amount of ambition of the Orlando business community. But aren't we talking about a Hampton Inn here? I don't think mid-price Hilton brands scream for edgy designs, anywhere...
  9. jliv

    The Brightline

    I cringe whenever I see a Wendell Cox "assessment", as he runs a right-wing think tank, and always has a strong bias against the public benefits of public transportation and urban planning. Those are two things that are hard to quantify in spreadsheet analyses, as many of the benefits are intangible. However, that's why we have public policy. No one ran this kind of analysis when we invaded Iraq: there was no quantifiable financial benefit to taxpayers to spend the trillions that we did, but it was supposed to provide intangible benefits such as "national security". Politicians should be considering these intangibles in their own analyses of the benefits for the "public good", much like they should with sports stadiums. One could easily argue that the public good of a $2 billion HSR train system benefits a lot more people economically than two $1 billion football stadiums, frankly. It's funny how Florida politicians, up until the Marlins Stadium fiasco, gave less resistance to specious arguments for sports investment than public mobility over the years. It comes down to values, and some people have very different values than others.
  10. jliv

    The Brightline

    And its awful. A friend of mine from the UK took the train to Washington Union Station after flying into BWI once and commented on how "third-world" American transit infrastructure is. And he's right.
  11. jliv

    Comparing Orlando...

    Completely different experience for me. Then again, I have to tell them about Winter Park as a pleasant respite from conventional tourist Orlando. Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
  12. jliv

    Comparing Orlando...

    Instead of moaning about the lack of leadership in Orlando, why not be a leader? The members of this forum seem to engage in a lot of “train spotting” of development projects, but I never see anyone pushing to organise to pressure developers and government agencies to build the kind of city that makes people want to stick around. I don’t live in Orlando (but I care because I grew up there and my extended family is mostly there) and the cities that you cite as great places enjoy a level of civic involvement I don’t often see in transient Orlando. Orlando could use more shared public spaces that don’t cost $100 to enter, more choices for transportation, etc. but often community pressure is needed to push government in the right direction. I will tell you this: most people I know who come to Orlando for business travel hate going there. The Orlando tourism industry has created a substandard product for business travellers, and that creates a deeper impression for business decision makers than any of those Buddy Dyer voice announcements on the airport people movers. It’s the hard truth: very few people over the age of 10 are thrilled at the prospect of visiting Orlando. These people who attend conventions in Orlando are the same people who make the decisions to invest their capital and talents in local businesses. If the brand is poor, they aren’t going to jump at new opportunities. In the age of Trump, the escalating level of civic participation throughout the country gives me hope, but as they say: all politics is local. Potholes do matter. Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
  13. jliv

    Downtown Orlando Project Discussion

    Interesting that Property Markets Group is expanding from its core Tier 1 markets of NYC, Chicago, and Miami straight into Orlando. They are certainly bold. That’s a good thing.
  14. jliv

    Downtown Orlando Project Discussion

    Ummm, Property Markets Group built this infamous pox on the NYC skyline. They are certainly bold. Interesting they are jumping from their core Tier 1 markets of NYC, Miami, and Chicago straight to Orlando. EDIT: wrong building. I’m easily confused. The rendering looks a lot like this: Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
  15. jliv

    Downtown Orlando Project Discussion

    Basically an unnamed party is negotiating with the broker to buy a 1.7 acre parcel, and that party has outbid Unicorp. (If you turn off Javascript in your browser, you can load this paywall-blocked content in the web page to read)...