Lisa Widmaier

commented on Midtown Tower of Lies 2013-07-21 13:46:56 -0400 · Flag
Your article on the (2nd) sale of Midtown Tower seems very inflammatory and misleading. I’ve also read the code about the sale of city-owned real property and the very first section states:

“Real property owned by the City which has been acquired through tax foreclosure proceedings or other means and is no longer needed for municipal purposes may be sold by the Director of Real Estate, upon approval by City Council, through any method authorized by statute, local law or ordinance.”

And to read further, if you are still insistent upon the city’s lack of follow through with its own laws:

“All sales of City-owned real property at public auction shall be made by the Director of Real Estate or his or her representative after notice of the sale has been published at least once in an official newspaper of the City, subject to the approval by City Council of the sale price and purchaser. Such sales shall also be subject to the following terms and conditions”

There is no requirement to sell via auction/bid; however do you know if they did put this sale up to bid? The only/minimum requirement is one notice in any official city newspaper; perhaps they did and you missed it.

I’d be interested to see what your plan would be for Midtown Tower, how you’d secure financing (which seems to be much tougher than it used to be considering that Christa Construction Mgmt., the original bid winner for the project failed to secure the required amount) and how the public would view a mayoral candidate winning the bid for such a large city project, if you actually had. Someone could easily cry foul or “I smell corruption” over a situation like that as well.

It’s so easy to present your perceived understanding of an event as fact. It’s much more difficult to be unbiased and honest about something, especially when it may go against the group thought in your own circle.

As someone who lives in Downtown Rochester, I’m very happy to see that the project is being taken over by a Rochester-based company that looks to have a proven track record in turning around problem locations, not some out of town company that thinks they know how Rochester works and what we need (because that’s worked so well in the past, ahem, High Falls).

I’m happy tax-breaks were secured seeing as the development companies will not directly benefit from them, the future commercial and residential tenants at the tower will. That means there’s even more incentive to bring people and companies back into the heart of the city and really revitalize it.

I’m excited about the changes slated for the Downtown area, I look forward to seeing what the next few years holds for us!