Massive re-do of downtown Quincy might be a massive re-don't

The Patriot Ledger reports it's looking more likely that the developer selected by the city for the $1.6-billion project is giving up.



    Free tagging: 


    Note to cities: Don't make onerous demands

    If zoning and other city demands make a project unprofitable, developers will walk. Lesson 2: rail infrastructure isn't enough, most goods and people now travel over roadways so major roadway access is needed for development and growth. The southeast distressway would need expansion to allow such economic growth.


    By on


    The developer was paying for roadway upgrades, expansion, and reconfiguration to help your beloved traffic.

    The nutshell of the problem

    By on

    ..seems to be here.

    Quincy Mutual Fire Insurance, one of two major project investors, has since said that Street-Works’ designs weren’t economically feasible for investors and the developer didn’t have any of its own capital to put into the project.

    So we have a bunch of builder blowhard bluster for a stupid leverage pipe dream.

    A kind of squid ink for the inconvenient reality that said developer wasn't risking any capital and their plans were dumb and glitzy.

    This seems to be the con used to make a crater in downtown Boston and the Summers Folly crater in Allston.

    It's like project chicken... make a crater... change everything and figure the city will go along. Except when they don't

    One funny thing I've observed in the Peoples Republic is that being a total tooth pull can be a better game plan. Cambridge, beyond its unique advantages, plays very hard to get with these kinds of speculators.Sure, it'll roll over for huge biotech things but not this stuff.

    And yet its stuff ends up more valuable than places falling over themselves to build the next bloated yuppie flytrap.

    Onerous demands?

    By on

    Telling a developer to expanding a highly space-constricted highway with no real room for expansion on either side sounds like a pretty onerous demand to me...

    Separate points

    Generally, putting demands on developers can tip projects into nonviable territory.

    Point 2, Nearby highway access with available capacity is vital to development and re-development, generally. Lots of Massachusetts towns built up around mills, but many don't have major roadway access and a critical mass of other jobs and residents. Take Maynard, for instance. Water power but poor highway access to anything, hence limited potential for development. Compare the Alewife T stop with Davis and Porter. Alewife has highway access, the other two don't and hence have not much redevelopment going on compared to all the new building that has gone in around Alewife.

    So, cities and towns have limited growth potential while Rt. 3 remains a bottleneck. Expansion of the Red Line helped some, but didn't take enough traffic off Rt. 3 to make it not remain a major constraint to growth and increased prosperity. Certainly, expansion of Rt. 3 is not the responsibility of any developer. I'm just saying that project viability can be doomed by inadequate roadway infrastructure.

    What in the fuck are you on about

    Yes, clearly, if they had ONLY demanded MORE from the developer, the project would have suddenly been more affordable to the developer!

    Seriously -- where do you come even come up with this stuff?

    Since when

    By on making things easier for property speculators more important than making places livable for those already on the hook?

    If the two aspects co-exist, fine, but this bullshit about development job creators is like some 'prosperity follows the project' myth cousin to 'rain follows the plow'.

    Yeah, another bunch of hardhats get another mess to milk while a bunch of chumps line up with sugar plum dreams of condo bonanzas or whatevs.

    I'm sure that the demand to treat a private development

    as public re prevailing wages and union-only labor had NOTHING to do with it./s The boneheads at Local 103 telegraphed their intentions when they tried to shut down that evil capitalist symbol, the new YMCA. These tools keep killing the golden goose.

    Construction industry capture

    By on

    seems to be collateral damage from the Big Dig.

    It bloated out one particular sector to unsustainable levels.

    But it is a reliable foot soldier for the urban side of the Democratic party where the votes are.

    It can get pretty mercenary if it isn't fed and does seem to particularly thrive in old school wardheeler habitats such as above mentioned Quincy and Somerville.

    I noticed a telling detail in a perusal of Arts funding stuff from the Mass Cultural Council a few years ago, before the recession.

    There were categories of funding for 'capitol projects' or arts money for hardhats.

    Back in the Dukakis era, capitol projects were not eligible for arts money. The prevailing view was that institutions were responsible for their own damned building projects.

    Right then I saw the distortion. The Commonwealth basically channels stupidly large proportions of its money stuff to potentially go to some hardhat thing.

    You get the sense that what passes for Beacon Hill deliberations often turns on where to insert another hardhat option in some particular bit of grift legislation.

    It might also be noted that these urban zones are major spawning grounds for future Beacon Hill grifters and the primary element of their art is steering easy money to their constituent clan structures.

    You start with getting some cousin sidewalk pouring work or some such and move on up to huge stuff like a Big Dig.

    There is a lot of real hardhat work that needs to be done on all our old breaking infrastructure stuff but its a smaller hog trough than those sexy glitz-a-thons.

    Are you kidding me?

    By on

    Quincy center is an excellent spot for a dense development, with access to the red line, commuter rail and numerous bus lines, you could very easily complete almost any errands without the need for a car.

    Quincy MBTA Station and ferry closure

    By on

    Quincy T garage is falling down and closed and the ferry boats have been shut down. On the other hand the T is paying ten thousand a month to keep the battleship Salem in Quincy bay in fighting shape in case T managers need to make a quick escape when next months fare hike meetings are held

    The Salem is a Des Moines

    By on

    The Salem is a Des Moines-class heavy cruiser not a battleship and not owned by the MBTA.


    By on

    According to the Patriot Ledger the MBTA is paying 10,000 a month for upkeep of the USS Salem, How does T management justify its request for massive fare hikes while paying a pirates ransom to a heavy cruiser docked in Quincy Bay

    Citation needed

    By on

    I'd like to see this article where they state that the T is paying this money.

    All the articles I've seen so far on the matter indicate that they were *considering* paying that money to compensate the museum for its financial losses during the closure of the pier, but apparently they have not paid anyone and have scuttled the project, which means that the museum will either have to relocate or close, all because they're trying *NOT* to spend your so-called-hard-earned tax dollars.

    Good thing no other city

    By on

    Good thing no other city around here going to fall for the "lure a big developer to make everything better" trap. Here's looking at you, Somerville, and Mayor Joe.