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"...the new state tax revenues generated by job-creation and other economic activity projected in a pre-development feasibility study are leveraged to pay the debt service costs for the new infrastructure."
BRA Press Release, 9/2006
We hereby announce that in Fort Point:
a district that is already comprised of over 80% office space; also know as
a district that has dwindling available space for new residential construction; also known as
a district where market forces gravitate toward office space construction and away from housing; also known as
a district within the South Boston Waterfront, sometimes known as
a 1000 acre land tract where evolution of a critical mass of new residents will be the crucial determinant of 24/7 vitality;
and in America, a country known for
a culture that continues to move towards a networked, remote workforce, away from outmoded cubicles and office buildings; and
with such awareness and knowledge,
the Boston Redevelopment Authority has deemed it appropriate to create tax incentives
for Development of MORE OFFICE SPACE!
Why don't South Boston Waterfront property owners put a shovel in the ground?
Because if property owners wait around, they can collect parking revenue while the BRA will continue to pile on more and more and more sweeteners in the form of tax breaks, tax-incremental financing, additional FAR above as-of-right, and zoning changes to create any land use that is viable in the current market.
What proof is there that this answer is correct?
Five hundred acres of parking lots, for two decades, without a shovel in the ground.
Every urban plan for the South Boston Waterfront completed over the past decade, including that of the Boston Society of Architects, the BRA's own consultants at Coopers Roberson & Partners, BRA's internal research and studies completed at MIT and Harvard urban design departments, have all called for residential construction as the golden chalice of Waterfront property.SO, WHAT DOES THE LATEST BRA SWEETENER DO?
The BRA has elected to incentivize more office space on the South Boston Waterfront.
Governor Romney has signed "I-Cubed" legislation, proposed by the Boston Redevelopment Authority, that would float public bonds to finance early phased development of Fort Point streets, sidewalks and other public realm components. This infrastructure is private property, predominately located on Proctor and Gamble / Gillette property.
For the past five years, representatives of the BRA and private property owners had claimed that privately-owned infrastructure costs would be paid privately and therefore justified significant variances in height, density and FAR. Now that newly adopted height, density and FAR provisions have been minted into a Fort Point Planned Development Area Master Plan, the BRA has reversed course by seeking public financing for the same private infrastructure. And with over a decade of successful pleadings by developers and property owners for more and more sweeteners, it is unlikely that shovels will enter the ground -- as long as the candy store remains open.
The "I-Cubed" legislation in financed through projected job creation, as a function of future development of office space. The BRA recently acknowledged in a public meeting that by using job creation to finance infrastructure, office space would be incentivized -- over residential construction, civic, cultural, retail, industrial or other uses.
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