Downtown Development: Steamrolled by Jagannath

I went to this evening’s Council meeting fully expecting to be steamrolled.

Yes, the negotiation team has worked years on “a deal” but not “the deal”. Since Nov. 20th, no real new details have been forthcoming.

I’ll be posting the video of tonight’s action tomorrow, so I’ll reserve detailed critiques until then…

Just a few quick comments, then:

  • Jim Ward’s description of how his “love was lost”, switch-n-bait and his solid reasons for opposition
  • Bill Strom and Mark Kleinschmidt watering down an amendment to the resolution to hold the the Town and its partner, RAM development, to the same energy efficiency requirements as we’re asking UNC to…
  • Laurin Easthom’s itemized list and request for specificity. Other Council members “response” to her request…
  • RAM’s VP Cummings shooting down reasonable condo fees for affordable housing and Leeds Silver + %20 energy efficiency
  • Mark K.’s remarks that paying reduced fees will make folks feel like second class citizens. Heck, if I made the commitment to move my family into a 850′ unit in what will generally be an expensive place to live, I’d be happy to deal with the tension of paying affordable condo fees.
  • The comment that the negotiations haven’t been rushed. True enough. Rushed has been the education and time for citizens to digest this radical right turn.

This is the first major issue I’ve come out against folks – Cam, Sally, Bill – that I’ve strongly endorsed in the past. The experience has been interesting….

For anyone interested, here’s the latest datasets for my Powerpoint (ugh!) presentation:

I’ve already tweaked the elevations again in GE using altitude. I believe I’m either going to have to go back to 3DS to fine tune the data or import the same topology that the model was developed against into GoogleEarth (GE).

I believe the Planning Department (Gordon Sutherland and company) might have better models of Granville Towers. Mine are envelopes of the actual structure, height based on the testimony of RAM’s designer (who provide comparable elevations for Granville, University Square, NCNB Plaza).

Also, I understand that the Mar. 2006 RAM Development Planning documents included a 3DS model of their development. When I get my hands on that, I’ll go ahead and update the Downtown.

Please feel free to use the material. If you should get the topology %100 before I do, please send me a copy ( campaign AT ).


Leave a Reply