Comment of the Day: The Value of Failed Developments

COMMENT OF THE DAY: THE VALUE OF FAILED DEVELOPMENTS “The financial failure of Mosaic is not related to zoning or neighborhood protection. Mosaic represents a massive mixed-use project that will (eventually) fill up and further the civic goals of increasing population density and adding positively to the streetscape. In the mean time, the FDIC and out-of-state investors are paying the property tax bill on units that aren’t occupied by people that would stress our infrastructure. Where’s the downside in that? If the alternative were a vacant lot, Mosaic is far preferable from a civic perspective. . . .” [TheNiche, commenting on Only the Towers Remain Standing: Mosaic and Friends Break the Bank]

10 Comment

  • You ask: where’s the downside in government entities supported by tax dollars floating a project like Mosaic? Commisar Obama could not have proposed the question better himself.

  • The FDIC is funded by insurance payments by member banks and thrift institutions, not taxes. While I think TheNiche is being a bit cavalier, he is not talking about tax dollars floating anything.

    Now if you will excuse me, Commissar Obama has asked for my help suppressing some kulaks. All power to the workers’ and farmers’ soviet!

  • Allow me to re-phrase. You ask: Where is the downside in redistributing wealth through a government agency to float the Mosaic? Commissar Obama would be equally pleased.

    RWB- Your assistance rustling up 60 Senate votes will be needed as well.

  • RWB writes: The FDIC is funded by insurance payments by member banks and thrift institutions, not taxes.

    Well, yes, but the FDIC payments made by banks come from somewhere, either from, for example, higher interest rates charged on loans made by the bank, increased fees paid by bank customers, or lower interest rates given on deposits owned by the bank’s customers, all of which are, effectively, “a tax.”

  • Since this quote was ripped from its context, let me clarify that this was a response to a real estate neophyte that thought that the financial failure at Mosaic somehow undermined local government entities and local citizens, when from a purely fiscal standpoint, the City of Houston, Harris County, HISD, and ever other taxing entity with jurisdiction including Mosaic wins out. I’d argue that the locals net out ahead of the game, as well; Texas as a state doesn’t get anywhere near its fair share of redistributed wealth returned to us, so to the extent that we can’t keep the process of redistribution from happening (and we obviously can’t), every little bit that comes back home should be considered welcome news. I just wish someone would let Rick Perry know that.

  • it’s easy to gloat when developers (and banks) get into trouble, but I have to agree this project is a much better alternative to the urban fabric than a vacant lot would be. in the long term, the financials will work out for the city and county.

  • I still can’t see how an empty tower or two of aging materials & design, is better that an empty lot full of sunshine, views & maybe even wildflowers…
    Just sayin’ if that out-of-town investment built something that could actually be sold, bring tax-payers to town & create traffic for local businesses, it would be better. Better even that sunshine, views & wildflowers.

  • I have good news for you, movocelot. With great patience you will find deep satisfaction. You needn’t even lift a finger; it will just come to you, as if it were your destiny. So sayeth yogi Niche.

  • We have very few white elephants…now if you want to have a discussion head over to Florida….all things considered we are lucky to have come out as well as we did…so to me from a city standpoint this is not a big deal, for the people involved (investors, buyers, etc.) it is everything. So where you looking from makes all the difference.