I seldom attend Board of Zoning Appeals meetings, but received a report from a friend who was there on Tuesday evening.
Up for a zoning variance was Progressive Land Development’s “microloft project” at the former site of Tommy Lancaster’s and Market Boy (northwest corner of Vincennes and Market).
55 one bedroom units ranging from 292sqf to 644sqf, and a whopping single retail unit that is 1300 sqf. Micro units to rent for planned $525 and the large units $825. Observe that 12×23 is smaller than a pull-behind camper.
Dude: that’s almost as tiny as David Duggins’ world view … but I digress.
However this variance for the benefit of Progressive Land Development was not sought by the company itself, whose principal is a documented Gahan re-enthronement campaign donor.
Rather, Progressive’s docket was handled by redevelopment director Josh Staten on behalf of Anchor City. Seems the municipality still owns the properties it purchased from the likes of Vinod Gupta and environmentally remediated.
Apparently someone asked Staten to enumerate the city’s previous accumulated subsidies and investments in the project, but he replied that he didn’t have those numbers. Obviously since the properties have yet to be sold to Progressive, we also don’t know the sale price, either.
It also was revealed …
… that HWC is the engineering firm of record and AXIS the architects. Both these firms are from Indianapolis, and yes Virginia, they’ve been pouring money into Gahan’s pockets.
To conclude: The city’s redevelopment department has picked a winner, and is running interference; the redevelopment director cannot cite relevant details at a variance hearing; and Gahan campaign donors are involved every step of the way, with ripened plums of the usual no-bid contracts awaiting them.
Nothing about this strikes me as transparent, and if I were to ask Democratic party functionaries to explain, the response is near certain: Yes, it’s slimy but it’s also standard operating procedure, and no one cares about the details as long as we keep moooooving forward; besides, the Republicans are worse.
This, then, is the extent of our degradation.
Grassroots redevelopers buy “the worst house on the worst block.” How’s a self-respecting mayor to wet his beak on THAT?
Progressive Land Development proposes to reinvent the wheel at Lancaster Lofts as Deaf Gahan says wait, is that check in the mail yet?