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#201 JBB

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Posted 06 October 2017 - 08:05 PM

Those restrictions are broken, circumvented, and worked around on a fairly regular basis. Fort Worth spent the last 2 decades giving tax incentives for everything.  Even bad developments.  They found a way to give Cabelas tax breaks.



#202 renamerusk

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Posted 06 October 2017 - 10:13 PM

It is angle that is being overlooked.

 

It is also seem that it does not bother some that incentives are given out so casually or that practice would be liked.

 

This is not your run of the mill, routine case.  Incentives still must have some fundamental attachment to the Public Good; and the case that a private landholder, which is what many of the propose sites are, can make the case that selecting their particular site is in the Public Good may be something that you sloth off, but it is a matter of law. If your site is a skyscraper, how do you demonstrate that it is in the Public Good to get publicly funded incentives.

 

A lot of attention has been given to transit, workforce, but greater attention should be given to incentives.  Incentives are going to be a real sticking point; who gets them, why and how will be anything but a routine matter.  The Amazon Project will be three dimensional.

 

In the sweepstakes for Amazon, Panther Island should have a leg up because it is a less controversial and far less complicated choice for a company like Amazon who must decide first whether a private landholder can or will receive publicly funded incentives or whether a site like Panther Island/TRVA that already has public backing is the better choice. 

 

Publicly owned sites have a built in advantage because there is no question about the availability of incentives.

 

I'm for Panther Island whose stated purpose is the Public Good.  I'm not for private developers who have no obligation at all to the Public Good and instead have an obligation to making a profit and are hoping for public incentives to do so.

 

I'm for Panther Island first but support sites like it. No apology coming.


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#203 JBB

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Posted 06 October 2017 - 10:21 PM

Yeah, it's a matter of law that's ignored regularly.  I've never heard of a local case of tax incentives being challenged on a legal basis.  I doubt it happens with Amazon in any location.  

 

I'm for Panther Island too (who's asking you to apologize for being a Panther Island cheerleader) and I agree that incentives are the difference maker since no one location is likely to be a perfect fit to all of the requirements.  



#204 renamerusk

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Posted 06 October 2017 - 10:48 PM

Public incentives always come with stipulations; that is how they are challenged.  When an agreement is made to satisfy those stipulations, then the incentives are granted. 

 

If a mall wants a tenant in its private mall, it does not seek or should it have means to public funds.  If Sundance Square or Hillwood wants a tenant, Amazon, they should not seeking public funds; they should provide all of the incentives from their own resources or borrowing them.

 

Yeah, I'm a cheerleader for Fort Worth and Panther Island; but I am also a cheerleader for the taxpayer when it comes to corporate welfare and it being given out without any assurance that it will be in the Public Good.

 

None of privately held sites meet the qualifications to receive the incentives that they would seek and that Amazon expects; and these privately held sites have no guarantee that they will receive public incentives given that they do not exist for the Public Good. On the other hand,  Fair Park/Dallas; Texas Stadium Site/Irving; and Panther Island/Fort Worth do have a guarantee as they exists for the Public Good or they exist as a result of prior public investments.  The battle becomes one between publicly owned sites v. privately held sites.

 

JBB, your points are valid. I simply believe that the Amazon Project is like nothing that has come before and requires pointing out every advantage that Fort Worth has to sway Amazon to locate here. 

 

"Incentives in hand are better than incentives in the bush".



#205 tamtagon

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 08:35 AM

Panther Island is a strong candidate, but I'm more drawn to PI's heavily residential potential should Amazon move to town by the train stations and convention center. As the catalyst, HQ2 flanking the I-30 side of downtown would kick-off a dramatic residential growth along 7th-Lancaster to the Cultural District and Panther Island. 



#206 renamerusk

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 09:36 AM

Panther Island is a strong candidate, but I'm more drawn to PI's heavily residential potential should Amazon move to town by the train stations and convention center. As the catalyst, HQ2 flanking the I-30 side of downtown would kick-off a dramatic residential growth along 7th-Lancaster to the Cultural District and Panther Island. 

 

How likely is it that Amazon will want to acquire land and all that that entails from a patchwork of private landowners?  I think that Amazon will prefer a shovel ready site of 200+ acres that is already in the hands of one group.

 

Where ever Amazon decides to locate its 2HQ, there will be a catalyst throughout that tow; and for train stations and convention centers will benefit regardless.



#207 tamtagon

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 11:02 AM

Anything is likely at this point in the game. Getting to Round 2 is all that matters right now.

 

I think Amazon could appreciate, even relish, the creativity that comes through a 10 year expansion of "city building" the HQ2 campus within the existing bones a town like Fort Worth. 

 

...and if you're gonna spend $5 billion, building through the urban fabric versus building a self-contained campus spread might carry less than tertiary concern; a patchwork bidding process might even same money.

 

Trains to the airport (non-stop or not) as well as commuter trains to Irving and Dallas and SSW Fort Worth (?) add strengthen, but this bid picks up speed should The Cotton Belt to extend the reach of DTFW all the way to UTD.



#208 renamerusk

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 12:08 PM

I agree with the urgency to get to the Round 2.

 

I don't think that you can get to Round 2 when you don't have a firm site with ownership of the site in hand.  The time it will take to bundle patches of land together or the possibility that ultimately you can not bundle the necessary space that Amazon is seeking will almost assuredly mean that your bid will not be competitive. I

 

I am hearing about a lot of pie in the sky scenarios based largely on "if and should" but it is in the best interest of Fort Worth, Dallas and Irving that they each submit their least complicated and most ready to go site for consideration. If sites like that near the ITC was available, you think that you would be hearing from its owner. Trains to the airport, commuter rail to suburbs and outlying neighborhoods is not what I take from the Amazon RFP.  Instead, it is looking for a urban/downtownish site which is by the way its Seattle site is today.  Think, if Amazon wanted a suburb or non-downtown location, it would simply move to the suburbs of Seattle.  Downtown Fort Worth does not have large blocks of single ownership land available; and if it does, it is difficult to get.  The years that it took Sundance Square to get the land that it needed to build the plaza should be instructive. 

 

Amazon plans to invest $5B.  It has almost certainly selected in own development and design team.  Amazon can build a 100 story tower or it can build a campus.  It seems like it has chosen to build itself a campus.  It needs the room to do so; and it needs that room to be available now and without going through the long and painstaking process of purchasing bits of land from dozens of title holders. 

 

Panther Island alone stands out as that room which has clear ownership and is ready today and does not require a ten year bundling process.  It is less than 5 minutes travel time from it to ITC.  It is also reasonable to either walk or bike to the ITC from P.I.



#209 tamtagon

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Posted 08 October 2017 - 09:54 AM

How much un/under-developed land is Bass still holding onto in downtown?  Is Panther Island the only CBD-ish acreage coming close to the RFP real estate "in general" parameter? 

 

A million ways to approach the RFP, and the strong regional umbrella of possibilities sure seems like good way to place all corners of North Texas in the presumable quarter finals.... just like the half dozen peer metros will use. 

 

As the process rolls on, North Texas siblings will have the opportunity to tweak each other, putting out the best. Getting out of the Sweet 16 will require creativity from Fort Worth, it's the Cinderella team, the dark horse. I think the Panther Island tabula rosa will need some sort of boost from within downtown... somehow.



#210 renamerusk

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Posted 08 October 2017 - 10:18 PM

How much un/under-developed land is Bass still holding onto in downtown?  Is Panther Island the only CBD-ish acreage coming close to the RFP real estate "in general" parameter? 

 

A million ways to approach the RFP, and the strong regional umbrella of possibilities sure seems like good way to place all corners of North Texas in the presumable quarter finals.... just like the half dozen peer metros will use. 

 

As the process rolls on, North Texas siblings will have the opportunity to tweak each other, putting out the best. Getting out of the Sweet 16 will require creativity from Fort Worth, it's the Cinderella team, the dark horse. I think the Panther Island tabula rosa will need some sort of boost from within downtown... somehow.

 

 The exact amount of Bass' holding in Downtown is unknown by me; but outsiders tend to think that Bass is all there is about Downtown and Fort Worth.  Like in Dallas, Downtown consists of blocks where ownership is held by individuals not associated with anyone but themselves. Besides, I don't believe that Sundance or Developers like it can make a winning argument for public incentives using the Public Good as their reasoning.

 

Yes. Panther Island is not only the CBD-ish acreage coming close to the RFP; it is the only acreage coming close to the RFP in North Texas and also which is under single ownership/control.  It is qualitatively different from any other site in the region.

 

These features, size and ownership,  makes it a favorite in the sweepstakes if you are handicapping.



#211 John T Roberts

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Posted 08 October 2017 - 10:37 PM

I believe the Bass Family owns several contiguous blocks on the northeast side of downtown.  I can count at least 10 blocks, but I'm not sure how many they own.



#212 renamerusk

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Posted 08 October 2017 - 10:46 PM

I believe the Bass Family owns several contiguous blocks on the northeast side of downtown.  I can count at least 10 blocks, but I'm not sure how many they own.

 

 Given that that is true, how does the Bass Family make a convincing argument that their potential windfall is in the Public Good?  Wouldn't BF have to forego the public funded incentives to avoid the appearance of self aggrandizing?  As a principal matter, all privately held developers will have face around of public scrutiny.

 

I have dropped in on several other metro areas take on the Amazon Project.  It has been revalatory.

 

Editorial pieces are urging against several big league cities to not make a bid.  There is too much cost to the taxpayer. There is too much growth to manage.  There is too much infighting among neighbors.   Some cities believe that they are actually doing fairly well without Amazon.  It is a growing backlash against a company that is asking so much and pitting developers against developers while placing a city's leadership in the middle of the fight.



#213 hannerhan

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Posted 09 October 2017 - 09:35 AM

https://www.bizjourn...ts-to-lure.html

 

The Walsh developers need to just sit down and be quiet.  Fort Worth already has an up hill battle going...the last thing we need to spend energy on is a location another 15 miles further from EVERYTHING Amazon is asking for, and with even less of the things that we're already challenged on (ie mass transit).  It's a bedroom community in the making and that's the opposite of what Amazon will be looking for



#214 renamerusk

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Posted 09 October 2017 - 09:56 AM

The Walsh developers need to just sit down and be quiet.....It's a bedroom community in the making and that's the opposite of what Amazon will be looking for

 

Agree.  The City is being disingenous accepting bids from private developers like Walsh knowing that these bidders will find it impossible to demonstrate a Public Good which will necessary to qualify for publicly funded incentives.

 

The assumption is that the City is just acting in a way as to not ruffle these guys feathers.



#215 Now in Denton

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Posted 09 October 2017 - 12:43 PM

https://www.bizjourn...ts-to-lure.html

 

The Walsh developers need to just sit down and be quiet.  Fort Worth already has an up hill battle going...the last thing we need to spend energy on is a location another 15 miles further from EVERYTHING Amazon is asking for, and with even less of the things that we're already challenged on (ie mass transit).  It's a bedroom community in the making and that's the opposite of what Amazon will be looking for

 

This same reporter Candace Carlisle. Who wrote this story. Also wrote. Texas Rangers, Dallas Cowboys could allure Amazon HQ2 to Arlington. McKinney making its move for Amazon second Headquarters. Lewisville looks to lure HQ2 with two development sites. UT-Dallas tech centric vision makes room for Amazon HQ2 campus. Higher education hub in Denton being pitched for Amazon HQ2. And don't forget Frisco's cheesy video pitch.

 

This is getting ridiculous. I am a big fan of Amazon HQ2 moving to Fort Worth. But what some cities are saying that makes them think they have the upper hand is Crazy. Collin County has no major University yet they landed big corporations. Rangers and the Cowboys in Arlington makes them alluring ? I don't think I want to follow the logic on that one ?  I can't wait till October 19th and this media circus is over. And in the hands of Amazon to decide. 



#216 JBB

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Posted 09 October 2017 - 01:16 PM

The circus won't end on October 19th. That's the deadline for proposals.

#217 tamtagon

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Posted 09 October 2017 - 02:09 PM

I'd really only want HQ2 in downtown Fort Worth or Dallas; Las Colinas is a possibility, too, but would be my third choice. While the phenomenal employment growth in Collin County certainly makes a prideful North Texas booster like me gleeful, I do think it's time in North Texas for a majority of office employment growth to concentrate and centralize in town, rather than continue to expand the edge.

 

I've cottoned to the notion of downtown Fort Worth growing as a recreational destination rather than employment. 



#218 renamerusk

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Posted 09 October 2017 - 06:40 PM

I'd really only want HQ2 in downtown Fort Worth or Dallas; Las Colinas is a possibility, too, but would be my third choice. While the phenomenal employment growth in Collin County certainly makes a prideful North Texas booster like me gleeful, I do think it's time in North Texas for a majority of office employment growth to concentrate and centralize in town, rather than continue to expand the edge.

 

I've cottoned to the notion of downtown Fort Worth growing as a recreational destination rather than employment. 

 

Agree.

 

The edges have had an edge too long.

 

I think the market has all but spoken about downtown employment tipping in favor of Downtown Dallas and its immediate environs.  Downtown Fort Worth, sans Amazon, has a much brighter future as a tourist/hospitality/residential and convention destination which can be just as vibrant as a 9-5 cycle of employment.



#219 rriojas71

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Posted 09 October 2017 - 10:30 PM

https://www.bizjourn...ts-to-lure.html
 
The Walsh developers need to just sit down and be quiet.  Fort Worth already has an up hill battle going...the last thing we need to spend energy on is a location another 15 miles further from EVERYTHING Amazon is asking for, and with even less of the things that we're already challenged on (ie mass transit).  It's a bedroom community in the making and that's the opposite of what Amazon will be looking for

 
This same reporter Candace Carlisle. Who wrote this story. Also wrote. Texas Rangers, Dallas Cowboys could allure Amazon HQ2 to Arlington. McKinney making its move for Amazon second Headquarters. Lewisville looks to lure HQ2 with two development sites. UT-Dallas tech centric vision makes room for Amazon HQ2 campus. Higher education hub in Denton being pitched for Amazon HQ2. And don't forget Frisco's cheesy video pitch.
 
This is getting ridiculous. I am a big fan of Amazon HQ2 moving to Fort Worth. But what some cities are saying that makes them think they have the upper hand is Crazy. Collin County has no major University yet they landed big corporations. Rangers and the Cowboys in Arlington makes them alluring ? I don't think I want to follow the logic on that one ?  I can't wait till October 19th and this media circus is over. And in the hands of Amazon to decide.

NID... I read those other articles as well and I just had to laugh. It was also a head scratcher from places like McKinney, Lewisville & especially the area in Arlington.

Did these cities not read Amazon’s wishlist? Amazon stressed an urban environment, mass transit and a area with a variety of activities for it’s employees... None of which any of them can offer. McKinney is cute but far from Urban and it lacks in any sort of cultural things to do. (i.e. museums, sporting events, symphony), Lewisville is a stereotypical example of a satellite town that only sprang up due to urban sprawl with little to no redeeming qualities for a company like Amazon to build a corporate campus. Arlington’s site is in a sea of parking lots and the city has no plan and no desire for mass transit. So now we’re supposed to think that all of a sudden they have seen the light. None of those sites stand a chance and all they are doing is taking away from the 2 cities that I think have a small glimmer of hope to land HQ2.

#220 tamtagon

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Posted 10 October 2017 - 08:01 AM

I'd say most of the places making a run at Amazon know they dont meet the stated minimum requirements for HQ2, but they are trying to raise awareness among any/all entities following this game and scouting locations for expansion. 

 

Super important for Fort Worth et al to have a strong answer for Amazon. Playing through to the quarter finals in the Amazon game could easily be the winning proposal for another. Regardless of the choice for HQ2, this exercise really needs to bring even sharper focus on the Fort Worth-DFW-Las Colinas-Dallas linear business district. It's the North Texas Triangle, if you will. haha 



#221 johnfwd

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Posted 10 October 2017 - 10:24 AM

I'd say most of the places making a run at Amazon know they dont meet the stated minimum requirements for HQ2, but they are trying to raise awareness among any/all entities following this game and scouting locations for expansion. 

 

Super important for Fort Worth et al to have a strong answer for Amazon. Playing through to the quarter finals in the Amazon game could easily be the winning proposal for another. Regardless of the choice for HQ2, this exercise really needs to bring even sharper focus on the Fort Worth-DFW-Las Colinas-Dallas linear business district. It's the North Texas Triangle, if you will. haha 

Interesting phrase.  It used to be called the "Golden Triangle," meaning Fort Worth-Denton-Dallas.  I know this may sound offensive to some but this whole "bowing" to all-mighty Amazon across the country doesn't sit right with me.



#222 renamerusk

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Posted 10 October 2017 - 02:08 PM

....I know this may sound offensive to some but this whole "bowing" to all-mighty Amazon across the country doesn't sit right with me.

 

It isn't sitting right with me either.  If you drop in  and read the discussions underway now from metros all across the country, you will find that there is a growing backlash towards the way Amazon is pitting neighbors against neighbors; asking for incentives and suggesting that it will change the successful bidder into its culture. 



#223 johnfwd

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Posted 11 October 2017 - 08:52 AM

Well, only a matter of time before MSN would post a slideshow on the cities competing for the Amazon No. 2.   Guess what (not surprising)?  Fort Worth is not on the list.  Of course our city's regional proxy, Dallas, is on the list.

 

http://www.msn.com/e...tandhp#image=12



#224 renamerusk

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Posted 11 October 2017 - 03:13 PM

Minneapolis-St.Paul or Raleigh-Durham but never Fort Worth-Dallas.  We live in a world of geographic morons. You would think that traveling to or through DFW would provide them with a clue.

 

MSN should be embarrassed airing this mindless material...[Dallas] "..its a shame that workers can't travel by horseback."

 

I do find Baltimore to be a very credible choice.



#225 Austin55

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Posted 12 October 2017 - 01:16 PM

San Antonio says "No thanks"

 

https://venturebeat....isnt-our-style/



#226 hannerhan

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Posted 12 October 2017 - 02:00 PM

San Antonio says "No thanks"

 

https://venturebeat....isnt-our-style/

 

This is like me telling Robert Kraft that I'm going to pass on the Pats QB job.



#227 elpingüino

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Posted 13 October 2017 - 09:43 AM

These reports from the Dallas Business Journal are really worth reading. Long story short, $1.24 billion in taxpayer-funded subsidies and incentives, not including state sales tax breaks.

"The Amazon Effect: How taxpayers are funding the disruption of the U.S. economy"
https://www.bizjourn...zon-effect.html

"As these cities can tell you, Amazon's benefits won't come cheap"
https://www.bizjourn...t-as-these.html

#228 JBB

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Posted 13 October 2017 - 10:20 AM

Those are interesting articles. Thanks for sharing.

Denver's approach emphasizing factors other than incentives and San Antonio saying they're not interested in offering incentives made me wonder if a private partner could emerge that would offer to front the costs of developing HQ2 under some sort of lease/buy back arrangement. There's probably some factors of that type of arrangement where it might be more appealing than public incentives.

I know it's common with any large corporation, but I've heard rumblings that Amazon is not the greatest employer at the distribution/fulfillment center level. They seem to regularly hire on a temp-to-full time arrangement with very few people making the jump to full time.

#229 rriojas71

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Posted 14 October 2017 - 09:01 AM

I know it's common with any large corporation, but I've heard rumblings that Amazon is not the greatest employer at the distribution/fulfillment center level. They seem to regularly hire on a temp-to-full time arrangement with very few people making the jump to full time.


I know of a friend who can vouch for that statement and she said that it was a horrible work environment at those centers. She had to take the job because of an unforseen foreseen financial situation and she said it felt like it was a couple of rungs up from slave labor. They time you when you go to the bathroom and mark it against you if you are late or take multiple bathroom breaks. You are marked up for any sort of ridiculous reason and their turnover rate is off the charts. From what she described to me it sounded nightmarish.

#230 tamtagon

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Posted Yesterday, 10:26 AM

I've heard similar things about working for Google. I believe we're seeing foundation laid for the next phase of labor unions. The largest employers of unskilled and semi-skilled workers skirting responsibility through hiring and employment status classifications -- most retail workers are part-time and/or "gifted" part-time worker benefits, same with CSR, distribution, fulfillment positions... such that more than half the staff of large corporations work without normal benefits.

 

Continued automation, dwindling training, decision makers deciding fewer contributors deserve profit share, bonuses, fringe benefits.... boils down to the income inequity situation that's popular and strategic for some to talk about. Certainly interesting times, I'm looking forward to seeing how so much building pressure finds release. 

 

It's easy to compare Amazon to Sears-Roebuck. The service is exactly the same, the technology is different. Just like mail order catalogs did not eliminate but thoroughly reshaped stores, online buying will not eliminate brick-and-mortar stores just evolve it. For sure, companies will go out of  business if their employees cannot afford to buy anything!






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