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November 15, 2006

Comments

Dr. Mrs. McCarthy

William,

C'mon love, sing with me.........

Beautiful dreamer, wake unto me......

Somerville's Planning Board? That's a good one. Better ask Trane what he thinks about how well the little Greek and his merry bunch of kindergarteners keep their word.

Good Luck tomorrow. Oh and William? Leave the freakin beret at home.

Your Friend,

Dr. Mrs. McCarthy

Sally May

who is little Greek and the kindergarteners? Is that an old rock group or something?

pulling my PUD

Are they really calling this group PUD? Goes well with SCAT, I guess.

Dr. Mrs. McCarthy

Dearest Pulling,

My thoughts exactly!

Dr. Mrs. McCarthy

Fever

Let’s not confuse the reasons why property taxes are high and keep going up in this city. It’s because of the actions of organizations like the Mystic View Task Force. I mean, if it wasn’t for the Task Force, developers would have developed something long ago and we would have higher commercial tax revenue and accordingly, not need as much residential tax revenue. Reading Shelton’s post was like reading communist propaganda, it’s so full of lies and biased opinions by Shelton that I think the developers should sue the Mystic View Task Force.

Solh Zendeh

Fever, if you are going to accuse him of lying please don't be so general. What exactly is he lying about?

brickbottom

Planning Board Members:

Board Members
Kevin Prior, Chairman
Linda Bohan
Joseph Favaloro
James Kirylo
Elizabeth Moroney

The mission of the Planning Board is to encourage and facilitate development of an appropriate nature, enhance the overall living environment and shape the community character in the City of Somerville by implementing the Somerville Zoning Ordinance.

The Board works with the residential and business communities to improve the quality of life and living environment through supporting sustainable growth which contributes to the tax base, expands job opportunities for residents and ensures a high level of services. The Staff strives both to enhance relationships with residents and neighborhood organizations and to expand participation in the planning process by providing information and technical assistance to the City’s residents, property owners, neighborhood groups and developers.

Bill Shelton

...starlight and dewdrops are waiting for thee.

OK Mrs. McC, it's an unseasonably warm evening. I'll leave the beret at home.

Bill

fever

Zendeh: I thought I made myself perfectly clear, but here it is a little more simply: Developers want to build commercial space (Ikea), but developers have been stymied by the efforts of the MVTF. Thanks to the MVTF our property taxes are outrageous and the Assembly Square area is still largely a wasteland.

Planning Board: I have a more appropriate mission statement based on your actions – Respect the opinions of the MVTF and keep Somerville as difficult and business un-friendly as possible.

There is no reason to be business friendly

There is no reason to be friendly to a business unless the business serves the community.

Keep it simple.
Learn from history.
yEverything you need to know you learnded arouond kindertgarden.

Don't give the store away. Look what happened to the Indians when they traded their hunting grounds for furs...

There is no reason to be business friendly

Instead of "they traded their hunting grounds for furs..."

I meant to say "they traded their hunting grounds for trinkets or something..."

Solh Zendeh

Fever, I'm sorry - I still don't see how he is *LYING*. If you refuse to be civil, at least be funny. I don't have to be either because I'm so pretty, what's your excuse?

Yorktown Street

I think Fever has it backwards. If Ikea came in, it would pay very low taxes to the city, because a big warehouse of a store like Ikea builds is not assessed as worth very much. If you build all big box stores on the site, your residential property taxes will remain high--forever. Only if you build commercial property that pays a lot of taxes will Somerville benefit.

Fever

"But the residential projects would produce more new costs to the city than revenues, creating a net loss"

Yes, it's expensive to educate children, especially in Somerville but I would like to see one example of a market-rate, new-construction residential project where there is a large amount of children that live there. The housing market in the luxury market consists largely of yuppies and empty nesters. Both of these groups don't have children. In addition, because of how anti-business Somerville is commercial assessments on a PSF basis aren't very high when compared to residential assessments on a PSF basis. But let's face it, MVTF already won, they scared away the big commercial users and the residential market is sinking. Assembley Square stays a wasteland and no tax revenue is generated.

anti-business Somerville

"because of how anti-business Somerville is"

Yes Mr. business man, we don't need you here! Go Away, unless you can prove you are going to decrease my property taxes. Which you can't! Not without lying.

And we keep talking about all these businesses helping our property taxes, fooling ourselves and everybody around us like that is what we are really trying to do. Like that revenue would automatically go towards the benevolent cause of helping the people of Somerville. No, what you really want to do with all this money is promote everyone on the police force to captain so they can feel even more too important to answer our calls and then buy motor boats for everyone down at the DPW yard.

Before Deval even won the election, when the polls were counting him in as shoe-in, we knew somehow that money would be coming our way. You don't get the unions and police and mayors to back you if you don't promise something in return. Even if what is promised is not yours to promise. It is our tax dollars. This city started spending a lot of money before any arrived. Spending it all before Deval was even elected. Harley Davison motor cycles, protests for police pay, DPW trucks, raises for the mayor and Aldermen. And most of the Aldermen don't do anything for their constituents. These lazy un-contested alderpeople are just insiders now that get paid for hardly any service at all. So why weren't we getting money for the citizens and home-owners of the city? Deval also mentioned a shell game. Where is our piece of this pie?

Oh and why do we have so many aldermen anyway? Only about three of them actually do any real work and serve their constituents. So why don't we increase the salaries even more for these three aldermen slots and give them each an assistant. This will save us money while at the same time pay the aldermen who actually deserve it more.

So every time you guys are selling a new liquor license, destroying the quality of our life's and neighborhoods you're actually just trying to give yourselves another raise or fancy truck. You are not even trying to help us at all are you?

So yes, We are an anti-business Somerville. This business of local corruption needs to end.

Hymie

What ever happened to the all american city ? you can't find any fine , upstanding, honest, honorable, trustworthy, legit, compassionate,TRUTHFULL, not out for their own personal gain type of politicians like vinnie piro, like dennis mckenna, like larry bretta, like paul hley jr, like bobby campo, like clean gene brune the senior's favorite person to have his hand in their pockets, like marie howe, like the fill in mayor jackie havigan ( build a house in rockport with city of somerville materials....now there is a list of illustrious somerville pols that had the city's best interest at heart.....NOT.....Give me Butchie the ball eater and peggy pellican or give me death.....long live S.Lester Ralph's memory

Disappointed

Hey Bill, You seem like a Cambridge wannabe! Cambridge is much larger than Somerville and because of that they have the ability to be more selective. They have a number of big boxes and businesses that generate the tax income for them. In Somerville case, we have limited space and must be prudent about development. Recent trends are that we try to squeeze as many residential units into the smallest space. This leads to congestion in our streets, lack of sufficient resources thereby incresing residential taxes. MVTF sold out on Assembly Square for the developer paying your litigation fees. You guys should have been more coorperative years ago! Now don't attempt to make it look like this delay in development was worth the time lag. When the IKEA traffic has cars backed up all over lower Broadway and McGrath Highway, you better not duck the fact that you agreed to it! By the way I was at the the meeting and saw only 1 alderman there and also noticed you and Wigs leave in cars! So much for pedestrian friendly, Ya right!

On another subject, It's great that our Alderman received such a large increse. Ward 4 and 1 had no aldermwn representing them, Nice use of money, we all should remember this come elections!

14-32 for Christmas!!!

Hey everyone I just saw that runway 14-32 at Logan airport is due to open up soon. This will help with air traffic right on time for the holiday seasons upon us. After al the sceaming and fighting to kill the project it looks like everything will turn out okay. Thanks to the congressman Mike Capuno and local 25!

Bil Shelton

Disappointed,

Your post is an interesting mix of fact and slander. Your assertion that over-investment in residential development creates congestion in the neighborhoods and undermines fiscal solvency is very much supported by the facts. Perhaps you can explain that to Fever.

You seem to contradict yourself when you say that Cambridge has "the ability to be more selective," and that this has something to do with its "size." Somerville had every bit as much, or more, abandoned facotry space as Cambridge did. The very fact that Somerville chose to replace job- and tax-generating commercial properties with service-consuming residential and retail that produce slim tax revenues illustrates that Somerville could be, and could have been, more selective. You will find sounder reasons for Somerville's languishing economic condition in its political culture, of which you are apart, than in its density.

Cambridge did have the advantage that MIT and Harvard are continually throwing off new businesses that can occupy commercal developments, but Somerville is closer to Harvard than much of Cambrdige is. Assembly Square, in particular, had much better transportation infrastructure and much lower land prices than any major development in Cambridge.

Instead, Cambridge consciously chose to transform tracts of land 25 acres or greater for office-based mixed-use development. They zoned it for that purpose and allowed no other. When a developer who had site control of North Point proposed big-box retail, Cambridge used Mystic View's research and refused to give permits to the developer, who then went and built Gateway Center in Everett. BTW, If I were a "Cambridge wannabe," I would live in Cambridge.

Now I'd like to believe that your statement that I drove to City Hall Thursday night is an honest mistake rather than a perverse lie calculated to discredit me with the gullible. I happily drive my car when the situation merits, and I feel no shame about it. But since I live in walking distance to City Hall, I walked. And Wig Zamore lives only two blocks from City Hall and has onsite parking. Who do you think you are fooling?

Since your assetion that Mystic View "sold out" is an honest opinon, I won't challenge it. But I would like to know this: What did you do in the past seven years to make the situation better in any way whatsover? What courageous act did you udetake? Given your position, you could have been influential. Why weren't you? And what do you intend to do now, other than calling names?

I would be pleased to have an honest, respectful, and fact-based discussion with you. But please don't try to discredit decent people of goodwill by broadcasting untruths. And if that was an honest mistake, please be more careful.

Traffic concerns

Has anyone driven through Wellington Circle lately? Saturday it was a nightmare trying to get over the bridge into Medford. Is is all traffic coming from Assembly Square? It wasn't all headed to the Gateway Center. And what will happen when all of the new residences open? If we don't take some action, this area is going to become a traffic nightmare. Already I see people trying to exit from Starbucks or Not Your Average Joe's and cut across 3 lanes of traffic! And by the way, I'm not involved with Mystic View or City Hall. I'm just a resident who doesn't want my city to turn into the Callahan Tunnel the day before Thanksgiving!!

fever

Shelton:

If you think that “residential development creates congestion in the neighborhoods and undermines fiscal solvency” then why did you scare away Ikea?

Let’s not forget that in the grand spectrum of completely upgrading the entire Assembly Square area versus leaving it as an eyesore, the MVTF has chosen the latter. By the way, I’d like to see one study that proves that high-end residential development "undermines fiscal solvency".

it *is* funny

Traffic concerns -- I noticed the chaos at Wellington too and immediately thought 'oh no, here's the first wave of the traffic problems' ... I sure hope it was a fluke this past weekend, although I'm not sure why it would have been. Just wait until IKEA opens.

Tricky

Bill, you totally pwn3d that guy. Jesus.

I generally agree with your point of view. However, it seems to be the slightest bit disingenous to mentioned Cambridge for assigning "tracts of land 25 acres or greater for office-based mixed-use development" and no other when there are condos galore being or having recently built nearby. It's not as though someone else is building two or three 20-story condo towers independently of any PUD development.

No housing east of I-93 = ghost town after 5:00.

Regards,
Tricky

Ron Newman

In fact, Kendall Square is a good example of what you get if you build only offices. The housing now being added there will make it a much better place.

Better For Whom

Better for whom, Ron? If you live in Cambridge, the office buildings are far better because they give the city a higher tax yield. That's better for the homeowners across the city whose taxes will be kept down due to an industrial area of the city.

Ron Newman

But the result is a lonely, empty ghost town after dark, where any retail business at all struggles to survive. The only drug store closed and was replaced by a Fidelity Investment office.

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