March 27, 2011

CityPlace is just a pipe dream

CityPlace in West Palm was pretty amazing. 

Nice to see the vision of City Square  live in color with CityPlace.  Granted I know Worcester can never be exactly like West Palm,  since my return Wednesday, there have been two stories in the Telegram about Main South CDC and low income housing
  1. Garner Kilby Hammond
  2. Grand Street
When is it ever enough?    We keep building projects like this, CitySquare will only be an office tower.     Currently we already have close to 15% low income housing, which is 50% over the Commonwealth mandate of 10%.   When do we say "NO!!!"  to any more Home Funds, Historic credits or whatever "free" money, that is not free, that is being handed out for more "No-Lo" housing.

If we say nothing,which we are doing, the CDC's and other developers of No-Lo surely will not stop, since this is their life blood.   Forget about 15%, we will be at 20% in 5 years and lead the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in the supply of NO-lo housing.      If we don't, there is no chance any developer or bank will consider putting the money into downtown Worcester that CitySquare will require.

Lets put NO-LO housing, where they need it in towns like Princeton that have basically none.


Paulie's Point of View said...

I just spent two hours driving around this city core...counted maybe eight people walking about...every saloon & restaurant dead except for The Banner.....the percentage of urban core demographics that is out and about and actively spending is low in Worcester

Sprout said...

Trying to make long range plans - I have to wonder if 5, 10 years down the road, if Worcester will have enough people to support a flower shop like mine.

Should I stay or should I go now?

Bill Randell said...


These are questions you need to ask yourself. Maybe you can start by wondering why George's on Main Street, which was there as long as I can remember, next to Moynihan's closed.

Wasn't there also a flower shop on Pleasant and Ashland Street? Personally I don't see flower shops as a growth industry in a no-lo City. You, on the other hand, pull business from surrounding areas.

Don't mean to be negative here, but trying to be a realist. Two articles this week, one with a full blown press conference, about Main South CDC and their efforts to build more No-Low Housing after I spent three days at City Place.

Not trying to compare West Palm to Worcester, but give me a break. Any bank or developer who tries to really build CitySquare the way Worcester now is an idiot.


Anonymous said...

Ridiculous...isn't it?!

Harry T

Jahn said...

I am telling everyone for the 101st time. New construction will change nothing in Worcester. We've been trying this failed formula since the mid 1960's.

I dont care if it's new buildings, new swimming pools, new Lincoln Squares(2 or 3 of em), new Commons (again 2 or 3of em ) or new schools. And now another new Worc Center?

It's the residents that make a location what it is and not new real estate.

An overabundance of low income residents will destroy any municipality.

The only hope could be the low income money from Boston & Washington DC will run out. How about a change in the tax laws that does way with these low income housing credits?

One last point, if you folks think Jim McGovern is going to help solve your problems here....please..........i mean he gave us Joe Obrien, Deval Patrick, Obamcare, and who knows what else....maybe a Dept of Peace that he has lobbied for?. The man is member of the Socialist PArty group. What more do we need to know.

You know what, I was feeling real good last night for whatever reason. Oddly enough I left Worcester at 830 am and didnt return until 600pm. Basically I was out of Worcester all day in suburbia for most of the day or on the interstates. Sad huh.......a god dam freezing early spring Sunday and I am in a good mood that night and this morning. Had to have something to do with changing my environs for the day?

Anonymous said...

RE: Sprout.

You are unique I think. The important factor to success with any business is community involvement and that is something that you have really harnessed. Regardless if the city has a population boom or not, your involvement, I believe, will get the right quality of people if not the quantity. As an outside observing having never seen your shop, I know enough about you through your community involvement to recommend Sprout to anyone looking for a local florist with great quality work.

Paulie's Point of View said...

if there are no customers it dont mattah how unique you are or how involved you are Anon...bill colllectors could give a you know what!

Paulie's Point of View said...

the really sad part about the no lo housing issue is that when it is not front in center in the newspaper that there is no other positive real estate story to replace it..

Jahn said...

Paulie, after you get the Azel Drakes Cakes House and the 224 Chandler Pajama People Palace cleaned up you should hold a press briefing and invite all the non profit low incomes housing chieftans and Havana Jim.

We need to stop the bulge of low income housing construction. Time to call in the infamous Battle of the Bulge man himself, General Geoge Patton.

Although it's been maybe only 6 weesk or so, I smell another letter to the editor soooon from Mr Richard C. I swear he got published 5x in 2010 and I thought there was a 4x limit per year?

Unknown said...

Regarding low-income housing, I live in the urban core a block away from Paulie, in subsidized housing, using fuel assistance and food stamps. However, I have been going out more often. I have been going to Hotel Vernon (can't beat $1 drafts...), Nick's, and my father comes to visit me (from NH) to eat dinner here in Worcester.

I understand the problem with an overabundance of no-low housing, and the affect on businesses. Even bars are having a hard time attracting people because no one wants to go out and spend money (in the winter, and during a recession).

If I had more money to spend, I would eat locally, drink locally and buy locally. But at the moment, all I have is my energy. If there is anything I can do to help my neighborhood or the city in general, let me know!

Nick said...

Towing companies in Worcester seems to be doing all right, maybe you guys should try to pick up a piece of that action.

In other non-developer business news, while giving driving lessons this Sunday morning near everyone's favorite ghost Price Chopper, I noticed the building between Joey's and Colonial on Mill St. has undergone quite the facade improvement and looks nice. Potentially great strip on the reservoir. Any news on this front?

Anonymous said...

The union that is across the street is going to move there. That was the word from the people in joeys.

Jahn said...

......and dare i ask...........what ever became of that Mill St Corridor study that was being kicked around maybe 2 or 3 yrs ago....seems to me the affable, friendly, boyish, Mr Pro Worc City C'or was front & center on the Mill St issue back then.

Maybe Massport told everyone to back off re Mill St corridor if'n y'all want us to buy yo Airport?

So............the winter vacation flying season has come & gone up on airport hill........again....I ask not what Worc Airport can do for Massport, but what can Massport do for Worc Airport? Maybe I've been missing the stories re: all Massport has done thses last 9 months? Worse part is we have 11 CC'ors asleep at teh switch when it comes to Worc Airport.

File under: Mass-Mothballed Port until further notice?