Monday, January 23, 2006

A request...

In the course of putting together something on the Charrette, I remembered something I had thought about several years ago (before there was ever a Charrette, but after the Downtown issue had surfaced).

Many today are concerned about the promised amenities of the Charrette--the plazas, landscaping, etc.--as well as the associated and costly infrastructure improvements--new streets, interchanges, schools, etc. Underlying this concern is a belief that the developers will be the sole beneficiaries of a Charrette-induced financial windfall, and we'll be stuck with the bills. This is a very valid concern, especially given the scope and scale of the proposed Town Center development.

However, numerous cities have dealt with this before through the use of various taxing mechanisms--namely, Tax Increment Financing and Special Taxing Districts. Though I'll describe these in more detail during a later post, I'm wondering if anyone reading this has heard any discussions about the use of such measures for Town Center and whether using either would even be feasible. I haven't heard mention such tactics, but I haven't been able to attend any Focus Group meetings and I certainly don't have an insider information.

If you know whether these special tax schemes have been discussed or why they may not be applicable to Town Center, shoot me an email (it will save me a lot of research work, meaning more time to blog!).

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