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NewTowner

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Channel 4 reports that whatever agreements were sought were settled today.

They also had a rendering (the first report of this project) of a large building called "The Acropolis" near Centennial Park. Parts of the building will seek Platninum Leed Certification, one of only 5 in the U.S. right now with that designation. I didn't see it too well, but it looked large with lots of rooftop gardens. It also looked expensive.

I suspect this is the project that our friend David has been working so diligently on. Tony G. told us about a large project some months back. Since it was sister story to the Sig, I suspect the rendering and information release was given during a followup to the Signature stories of this week.

Hey Dave, I cant find any thing about the Acropolis project anywhere including the WSMV site. Maybe we will egt more info onthis one a little later in the day.

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But tell me this...if he says he's gonna have a ground breaking in Jan, then March, then July 4, then July 7, and now the middle of the month, are we allowed to call him a liar when the date comes and goes? No one's calling him a liar...but questioning a salesman's sales pitch is a healthy thing to do, don't you think?

I don't think it's ever necessary to call him a liar, but questioning his pitch as you put it is a good thing to do. I would fully expect if the date once again comes and goes that people would point that out, and that is a fair thing to do as we track the progress of the development. That being said, what I don't understand is placing the word "dead" on a project when one target date is missed...We all know that the truth, whether making this project a certainty or causing it to be "dead" will come out at some point...

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I don't think it's ever necessary to call him a liar, but questioning his pitch as you put it is a good thing to do. I would fully expect if the date once again comes and goes that people would point that out, and that is a fair thing to do as we track the progress of the development. That being said, what I don't understand is placing the word "dead" on a project when one target date is missed...We all know that the truth, whether making this project a certainty or causing it to be "dead" will come out at some point...

I totaly agree with you. I remember a while ago i was in the Philidelphia forum, people where so excited when the Comcast Center was beginnning construction. From the way most of the forumers comments sounded, they were alot like ours right now. Mostly they were saying things like "it's about time", or "after all the negative skeptism, it's finnaly happening". I guess that maybe such a large project like these do have setbacks because they are so complex, atleast one can only hope that this is what is going on with Siggy. :rolleyes:

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I don't think it's ever necessary to call him a liar, but questioning his pitch as you put it is a good thing to do. I would fully expect if the date once again comes and goes that people would point that out, and that is a fair thing to do as we track the progress of the development. That being said, what I don't understand is placing the word "dead" on a project when one target date is missed...We all know that the truth, whether making this project a certainty or causing it to be "dead" will come out at some point...

I agree...it'll take a lot more for me to call this project dead. It just seems that some on here believe this thing will happen no matter what obsticles stand in the way and that selling condos is not one of the contingencies needed for this tower to be a go. If it happens without Tony having more units sold than he does right now then my above statement about "deep pocket investors or a really friendly banker" stands. And let me say again...I want this tower built as bad as the next guy. (or gal in this case) :P

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I thought the property is completely surrounded by a fence with pictures of Signature Tower on it.

It's only partially surrounded. The lot, owned by Giarratana, is still open.

At our forum meet today, William Williams, writer for "The City Paper" announced that he interviewed Tony Giarratana very recently about the Signature Tower project. He revealed important information to the group about the project which will be revealed in his article Monday. We can discuss the project on this forum in a more enlightened basis then.

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It's only partially surrounded. The lot, owned by Giarratana, is still open.

At our forum meet today, William Williams, writer for "The City Paper" announced that he interviewed Tony Giarratana very recently about the Signature Tower project. He revealed important information to the group about the project which will be revealed in his article Monday. We can discuss the project on this forum in a more enlightened basis then.

By enlightened, I hope you mean some good news.

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I've given WW a fair rash about how he's covered the ST, particularly his last few articles. I hope he cuts to the heart of what everyone is interested in understanding and doesn't just become a PR conduit for Tony's marketing group. Given all the speculation and lack of information about contract conversions, equity and lending sources, etc. interviewing Tony ought to be a reporters dream right now. I hope he delivers a good article.

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He can only report what the subject reveals even if all of those questions are asked. No one is trying to be a deliberate schill for Girantana, but as we have witnessed first hand with Alex Palmer, private developments and developers have their plan and you will know about it when they want you to.

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^ I'm not under any illusion that reporters can force the developers to do or say anything but the last part of your first sentence is the key. So far, WW hasn't shown a willingness to ask those questions. It would be refreshing and quite useful to the public, I think, if he provided some clarity on the status of contracts (not reservations) relative to the pre-sale requirement that the equity and lending sources will require. Also, last year Tony announced that in November the Jones LaSalle guy was going to start searching the world over for the $300 million of debt and equity needed to build ST. If we're to take him at his word (as some here have suggested) that he is now realistically expecting to literally break ground in a few weeks then he should absolutely expect to be asked who will fund the project. If it's really all that locked up I can't think of a reason in the world that all this info would still need to be a state secret.

Again, to your point, there's no way to force the disclosure of this info but after 60 or 70 ST media stories most decent journalists would decline to simply regurgitate a developers talking points at this point without having the opportunity to inquire and report on the more substantive questions of the day. Below in bold was my reaction to the last article WW wrote 3 months ago about ST. I hope he'll unearth and report some good info this time but I think if there was really exciting and positive news for Tony to report he'd be calling the Tennessean since their circulation is so much bigger than CP's. We'll see tomorrow.

Jeeper12 wrote:

Mar 28 2007, 10:37 AM Post #1537

Here is William's article in today's CP:

http://www.nashvillecitypaper.com/index.cf...p;news_id=55372

I like William but I was pretty disappointed to see him write such a puff piece. He knows better than to "report" to the public that ST will break ground when Tony secures 120 more "reservations". Even if Tony said it it's no excuse; William knows the difference between a reservation and a contract and, as a journalist covering real estate, he should hold himself to a higher standard.

Our media needs to stop appearing so unsophisticated about the issues related to getting these large projects off the ground. It doesn't serve the public well to remain so confused and uneducated about these things. Ironically, the only news in Williams article seems to be that Tony currently has about the same number of reservations now that he had before the opening and the 500 visitors walked through.

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^ There is a difference between having a commitment letter from a construction lender (or lenders as is likely in this case) and having satisfied all the conditions precedents to funding which would all be stipulated in the commitment letter. The bank issuing the commitment wouldn't be required to fund the first dollar until the developer satisfied each and every requirement. Once this commitment is in hand it kind of helps the developer to go get all the other puzzle pieces needed to assemble the deal. Can you imagine how much easier Tony's job would be to raise equity and sell units if he could at least name the lender and the terms (buyer deposit requirement, equity %/LTV, etc.) of the financing he had obtained ? That's why I'm so certain he doesn't have one. If he did, there'd be too many reasons not to hold back; prospective partners and buyers would feel much more reassured about jumping into the deal. The same would be true of publicizing his $80 million equity raise. However, unlike the lenders, I could see an equity partner prospect being more leary about having their identity disclosed with so much apparent uncertainty about the prospects of getting these units sold and financed. Anyone sophisticated enough to have the $'s needed on this deal doesn't like to look foolish, which would be the reaction if things collapsed and never started. So, it's more logical for him to use a lender announcment (however flimsy and riduled with difficult to achieve pre-funding req'mnts) to generate buzz and re-establish some momentum if he ever obtains one. According to his own pub he's been looking since last Nov.

But again, if there is a bank commitment letter to be had on this deal one likely would have already been generated and for all the reasons mentioned and more, and we'd have heard who it was. Lenders are a fickle bunch and with development projects you'll often either have 10 banks wanting to do the deal (lend the money) or none. Even when there are none there is usually a desperate institutional soul out there somewhere (especially these days) stretching ridiculously to try and make things work. But even they also generally know they are alone and in the driver's seat, thus making the hapless developer's task all that much more difficult.

We had a spirited discussion here 3 months ago about the issues associated with Tony disclosing his lender and equity sources. I think everything I wrote then still holds today but I'm really surprised he is apparently still unable to introduce a construction lender, even one only committed subject to a mountain of conditions related to sales, equity investments, cost budgets and the like. Oh well, maybe my skepticism is just getting the best of me and we will become more enlightened about this tomorrow morning.

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Just last week, Giarratana met with general contractor Turner Construction Co. to address a $5 million overage for what was to be a $250 million hard-costs budget. Also, Giarratana expects to have only about 100 of Sig T
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What an interesting headline. WW always seems to miss the news in his own articles. Here's my take:

Tony still hasn't confirmed a single solitary contract. How many did he have as of coffee ?

Either WW didn't ask the question or Tony couldn't provide any details about how the project will be funded.

Tony has excavation permits in hand and sounds perfectly willing to begin digging a deep hole knowing that he's yet to reach the half way point to his presales requirement. BTW, his self imposed presale requirement is only a guess, as are the contract deposit terms, until he gets a lender to commit. It will ultimately be up to them.

Also when I suggested that AP might be taking a gamble digging a hole for WES before he had tenants, sale contracts and a lender I was accused of being an idiot, disrespectful, heresy, etc. but what is probably the biggest nugget of news in WW's article is this: Tony plans to start digging a cavern before he's even half way to his "yet to be confirmed by a lender" presales target. We don't have to argue about that now that it's in black and white yet I would imagine there may be a healthy debate over whether it is good public policy to allow this to happen considering the safety and inconvenience factors involved. At a minimum, I think he owes th city a lot more of an explanation as to what his plan is for funding this deal before these permits should be granted. Are we gambling that he'll get another 160 contracts or are we also hoping that these contracts will also generate more lender and equity partner interest.

Typically, developers don't owe the public anything. But I think this situation is different.

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What an interesting headline. WW always seems to miss the news in his own articles. Here's my take:

Tony still hasn't confirmed a single solitary contract. How many did he have as of coffee ?

Either WW didn't ask the question or Tony couldn't provide any details about how the project will be funded.

Tony has excavation permits in hand and sounds perfectly willing to begin digging a deep hole knowing that he's yet to reach the half way point to his presales requirement. BTW, his self imposed presale requirement is only a guess, as are the contract deposit terms, until he gets a lender to commit. It will ultimately be up to them.

Also when I suggested that AP might be taking a gamble digging a hole for WES before he had tenants, sale contracts and a lender I was accused of being an idiot, disrespectful, heresy, etc. but what is probably the biggest nugget of news in WW's article is this: Tony plans to start digging a cavern before he's even half way to his "yet to be confirmed by a lender" presales target. We don't have to argue about that now that it's in black and white yet I would imagine there may be a healthy debate over whether it is good public policy to allow this to happen considering the safety and inconvenience factors involved. At a minimum, I think he owes th city a lot more of an explanation as to what his plan is for funding this deal before these permits should be granted. Are we gambling that he'll get another 160 contracts or are we also hoping that these contracts will also generate more lender and equity partner interest.

Typically, developers don't owe the public anything. But I think this situation is different.

Tony has no doubt done some intense market research for that area and believes the project will sell out. I also believe he realizes that actually hanging a building that size in a city that size is highly unusual thus may make the majority of buyers skiddish in regard to committing. With that knowledge he probably realizes once the construction is started, there will no doubt be a sharp jump in actual sales due to the reality of the project. It will be much easier to sell units in a landmark building like this once the cranes are in place. Yes it's a risk but I also follow that line of thinking.

This also leads me back to some earlier posts regarding what I believe was a photo-op by the sign with a group of professional looking couples. Anyone know what that turned out to be?

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I disagree.... his land, his money, his hole to fill if he fails. Plus once he's gone forward with a hole, if he doesn't get all the contracts needed he can always scale back the building plans.

You have got to take risk in life to get ahead or to achieve some goals. Tony is doing what he as to do as is Palmer. As it may be dumb in our eyses it makes sence in thiers and I'd have to say I'd prob gamble on their side because after all, they are the ones with the big buck and we're tne ones sitting on the sidelines playing Monday Morning QB

If this was city land like the thermal site then I'd agree and say he owed the public some info..... But since it's not, its his to play with. If this tower was out in the boonies no one would care if he started digging. Develepors don't owe us "Joes" a thing as long as it ain't our land......

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No matter which side you stand on (will be built/won't be built), it is good to see Tony come out and confirm to us the number of units he expects to go to contract soon. There's no hidden number. 100. We all know he needs more than that. The only question is this: will digging a hole get him 120 more contracts? What happens if he doesn't sell that many? Does he build something else? Does he fill in the hole?

Many have agreed that just "scaling back" probably won't work because the contracts will be for a 70 story building at 1057'. He'll have to start all over again.

Personally...I have no problem with a man taking a risk, but wow. That's gonna be a mighty deep hole to dig without financing 100% approved.

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Regardless of the state of the Signature Tower, it sounds as if the article was a bunch of noise over nothing. Honestly I didn't expect anything more in this case given past comments and echoing the note above that too many "interviewers" are more interested in being in good graces with the people they are interviewing instead of asking difficult and probing questions.

Next time lets not waste 1/2 page of posts pondering over the Nashville city paper.

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There's no hidden number. 100.

Reread that article and you'll see it does still appear to be hidden. He didn't confirm any number with WW only that he "hoped" to have 100 at the end of the month which suggests he has less than that now...Ole Tony keeps moving the cheese on us.

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