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vaceltic

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vaceltic last won the day on July 16 2011

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About vaceltic

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    Richmond, VA

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  1. I have pointed out several alternatives (and missed opportunities by the city over the past 15 years) throughout this thread. I also just pointed out several missed opportunities by Stoney to get competitive bids to make all these pieces happen and get the best deal for the city. It’s his missteps that have forced this all-or-nothing decision to be made. I just went to a district meeting and asked Stoneys representative why the city is choosing to redistribute residential growth from Manchester (non Tif) to downtown (TIF) based on Navy Hill’s own market analysis. The administrator’s response was “I haven’t read the analysis” yet she also said “I don’t believe the market analysis is accurate.” are you kidding me? That’s supposed to give me confidence and convince me to support this?
  2. I disagree with your assessment of Stoney. He had an opportunity with the RFP to set requirements for multiple bidders to compete on. He even claimed he would only move forward with a deal if its good for the city. Well, that came and went with no competitive proposal. After receiving only one proposal, he could have chosen to refine the RFP so it was less complex or break it up into pieces. Bidders for the arena. Bidders for the GRTC Transfer Station. Bidders for housing. Bidders for hotel. Instead, he ran with the only option we got and has been “negotiating” from a position of weakness ever since. It is the tail wagging the dog. Navy Hill, LLC was being formed before the last Mayoral election took place. Since then, so much time and money has been spent by this administration to review and understand this complex boondoggle, from its own staff to Davenport & Company, the 'financial wealth management' firm the City pays to review the numbers. Just look at how many questions they had to submit on the draft proposal. I suspect much of their time since had been used to craft the best narrative possible, cherry picking the best numbers to make this sound like a financial windfall for the city. When the numbers for a 10-block TIF looked bad a year ago, they should have backed out. They didn't. Instead, they put more of RVA on the hook by making it 80-blocks. It is ALL about Stoney's reputation now. His political career now rides or dies on the implementation or rejection of this project as he is the public face and steward of the project. He has been backed into a corner by his early mistakes - the time and money spent by the political elite backing Navy Hill LLC are trying to force this to happen, Richmond taxpayers be damned, because they’ve already spent $30M on architecture fees, marketing, and reaearch. Listen to the words of Navy Hill representatives, Stoney, and his Chief of staff, when REAL Richmond residents object. They cast US as the outsiders and people stuck in the past (similar to what many on here like to state), when in fact, not one of them pays taxes to the City. It is a bad deal for Manchester, Monroe Ward, General Fund revenues, Richmond's debt capacity, flexibility of future City Councils to change funding priorities, and ultimately the taxpayers (taxes will go up when this does not achieve the intended results). Not to mention the timing of it on the downswing of the longest economic expansion in US history should be very alarming to anyone paying attention.
  3. The GRTC transfer station can be built on its own merits. It is a reasonable use of City taxpayer money to fund a public good. The amount of housing proposed for this development will stifle the free-market development of Manchester and the newly upzoned Monroe Park for a half-decade - areas located outside the TIF boundaries and where tax revenues go straight to the general fund 100%.
  4. vaceltic

    New Arena

    Don’t worry guys, I’m fighting the Richmond Arena deal tooth and nail. Pretty pictures are great, but the financing scheme is a net loss and significant risk to Richmond taxpayers. I take issue with the lofty, unrealistic attendance and revenue projections, the fact that Richmond alone has to foot the bill (even though surrounding counties benefit), and the project costs have been incorrectly calculated at the most rudimentary level, despite Richmond hiring a “wealth management” company to review the finances. Don’t worry, when this fails, some corporate entity will swoop back into Norfolk proclaiming its own saving grace project that Norfolk taxpayers will be on the hook for.
  5. The census and Weldon Cooper center we’re wrong about 2010 projections. They assumed a continued population loss for Richmond when we actually gained after the count was in. I’m hopeful the same will happen - that the census is undercounting, not capturing the magnitude the shift of millennials moving from suburbs to urban areas is having on Richmond.
  6. The author manages the website nocoliseum.com which goes into great detail on several subjects about why he thinks this plan likely won’t work or be achieved as advertised. https://nocoliseum.com/
  7. E, it has been done (past tense). A lot of communities in a North Carolina have laws where, if you develop land along the beach in the flood plain and a hurricane or flood takes it out, it is permanently undevelopable after that, regardless of raising its height above flood water.
  8. Gotcha. I misunderstood it as an either or (arena vs river master plan) proposition. Yes, plopping an indoor arena next to the river doesn’t make sense at all. But, the City cannot fund both at the same time. The administration has decided where its priorities lie.
  9. With the name “hike” I figure you would be more appreciative of the river. It was the #1 attraction for Richmond in 2015, with four times more visitors than an arena, at its highest attendance, would generate. Completion of the master plan EXPANDS the river park system, more than accommodating additional visitors. Not sure what is meant by it becoming “overcrowded and invisible”. We have brought so many tourists here BECAUSE of the river and associated festivals and events (Folk fest, Riverrock, Friday Cheers, Xterra, and yes, even 2015 UCI). FolkFest, in one weekend, draws half the amount of visitors a $600M arena would do in a year. I’m pretty sure that is not a taxpayer funded venture at all, but based on corporate sponsorships and donations. Oregon Hill, Manchester, Canal Walk, Rockets Landing do not exist as viable neighborhoods without the River. No other city in the US has the features or park system the James River provides. You cannot raft Class 4 rapids in a downtown anywhere. Few places likely have a 45 mile trail from a modern downtown to a historic founding town. The amount of amenities it provides are numerous and unique to Richmond. I agree with woody, we should capitalize on what we have the best of instead of copying other places with a banal, corporatized fad that will fade when the newness rubs off in 10 years.
  10. Can you please cite some examples of this Citi?
  11. Not all costs have been accounted for with respect to Police, Fire, and Planning. A $2M annual cost for fire services should not be multiplied out 30 years equalling $60M. These costs increase with inflation. Millions undercounted. I guarantee $2M today will not get you the same $2M of goods and services in 2045. Social Services relocation and Richmond Public School costs were completely omitted from their analysis, despite their report including a slide guesstimating $7K enrollment cost per student annually and estimate 300 students in a separate slide. The cost benefit summary just puts an asterisk in the public school cost row, essentially saying it’s zero cost over 30 years. Ironic, since one of the central arguments to do this is to help the schools but don’t deduct these costs against inflated revenue numbers . Its all there in the first file posted to the City’s development webpage.
  12. The $1 million loss is a false narrative. That does not account for the existing arena's admissions taxes, sales taxes, and hotel taxes it generated from its shows. Yet when we are supposed to look at the new proposal, of course they include those taxes revenues in their projections of how successful it will be. We are not getting apples to apples comparisons of the existing versus new cost/benefit. The proposal is so complex it is designed to mislead and hide the risks of the project from its citizens. I have taken a thorough look through Davenport & Company's financial impact statement on the proposal. I pointed out numerous errors and blatant omissions of costs in their assumptions on just TWO SLIDES of their presentation and forwarded these to city council so they won't be duped. Not all costs have been accounted for with respect to Police, Fire, and Planning. Social Services and Richmond Public School costs were even completely omitted from their analysis. There HAVE been development alternatives before going back over a decade. Piecemeal development proposals for sure, but the city declined them because the city owns the land and wants to control the outcome. Cheerleaders of development in other resurgent neighborhoods (newly upzoned Monroe Ward, Manchester, Shockoe Bottom) will be waiting a LONG time for new development to occur if this is approved. Downtown residential and commercial development will stagnate for a 6 year period if this moves forward. This is based on Navy Hill's own market analysis conducted by CS&L (Page 283 of 589 of Navy Hill’s original development proposal; Page 23 of CS&L Analysis) claiming a 450 apartment unit absorption rate for downtown (which CS&L defines as VCU area, Jackson Ward, all of Manchester south to Maury Street, and Shockoe Bottom). This proposal will be all we get for quite some time - and none of the tax revenues are guaranteed to go to any city services other than servicing the arena debt.
  13. There could be limitations on height based upon the apparatus, personnel, and equipment available to the City’s fire and emergency response departments and the parameters they need to meet for emergency response times. For instance, meeting a 3 minute response time might be calculated up to 20 floors but any higher would be outside these parameters and prevent the building from going higher. It all depends on the location of the proposed fire station and the heights of surrounding buildings.
  14. I think Atlanta could be considered global with the largest airport traffic in US. Also, Tier 5 Midwest cities, not sure how banal they are. Cleveland and KC have some character to them!
  15. Images attached for the Richmond Arena projections (800K) versus existing comparable arenas (400K and less) from the HSP analysis the city is using for its financial projections. The attendance estimate included in the proposal is less than 60 percent of these numbers! Every financial generator of this proposal matters, as it is a crumbling house of cards if not one is accurate. I’ll continue to dig and provide additional false or incorrect assumptions as I find them.
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