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Tampa Sets Criterion For Picking Central Park Developer
By SEAN LENGELL [email protected]
Published: Mar 31, 2005




TAMPA - As plans move forward to have private builders redevelop aging Central Park Village, some housing officials worry that not enough public housing units there will be replaced.
Tampa Housing Authority members voted Wednesday to approve a list of criteria for choosing a developer for the 28-acre complex, but not before requesting that any plans include ``as much replacement public housing as possible.''

The decision, which did not include a specific number of units, was a compromise after board members Gerald White and Toni Riordan wanted each of the 484 units at the complex to be replaced with another apartment.

``I am very concerned about not looking for one-for-one replacement,'' Riordan said. ``Where are these [Central Park residents] going to go?''

Fradique Rocha, who runs a committee initiated by Mayor Pam Iorio to develop criteria for choosing a developer, said such a demand could scare off qualified developers.

``You may be limiting your options,'' Rocha said.

Housing authority Executive Director Jerome Ryans said replacing every public housing unit with another would not leave much room for market- rate dwellings.

``Frankly, I don't think that's going to happen,'' Ryans said. ``Developers aren't going to do this deal unless they can make money.''

Central Park Village, built in the 1960s north of downtown on Nebraska Avenue, long has been discussed as a potential site for redevelopment.

Organizers of Tampa's failed attempt to land the 2012 Summer Olympic Games proposed razing Central Park for sports- related facilities.

Later, proponents of the Civitas project, which was to be a mix of high-priced condominiums and affordable housing, also eyed the property.

After the Civitas deal failed last year, the housing authority decided to find its own developer to build a blend of housing for a variety of income levels.

The housing board set a May 16 deadline to receive ``request for qualification'' proposals from potential developers.

The mayor's committee will compile a list of about three finalists subject to review and ranking by the board in August.


Reporter Sean Lengell can be reached at (813) 259-7145.

http://tampatrib.com/floridametronews/MGBPKADJY6E.html
 

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I don't know why they are so concerned about replacing unit for unit. I have spent a lot of time in the projects and I would be really surprised if more than 10% of the people living there are truely down on their luck and need assistance. the other 90% are just lazy peices of crap that don't want to work.

I also don't understand why we have 2 and 3 generations in the projects. This is supposed to be ASSISTANCE, to help get you back on your feet. I think you should be limited to 5 or 10 years of free housing, after that find yourself a refrigerator box and move under the interstate.


P.S. I really hope some nice mixed housing goes in here. I think it maybe one of the most important pieces of real estate in the city. It will have an incrediable bearing on how the Downtown/ybor area continues to develop.
 

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tonyff67 said:
I also don't understand why we have 2 and 3 generations in the projects. This is supposed to be ASSISTANCE, to help get you back on your feet. I think you should be limited to 5 or 10 years of free housing, after that find yourself a refrigerator box and move under the interstate.
Too funny :lol: but true :(

Yeah, I think this slice of downtown is vital for development in the next five years or so. If our downtown actually does improve the way our brilliant city leaders tell us, the area might not be a bad place for a baseball stadium to replace that god-awful monstrosity in St. Pete. But instead I imagine we'll have hokey-looking two storey Disneyesque flats, and probably some stand-alone houses just to piss us off. This is Tampa after all.
 

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I don't mind if they match units or live there forever as long as they have a few requirements for living there - like no felons, like you have to pay a little or work to cover the cost (gardening or sweeping or picking up trash or something)

And as long as they build nice units.

You know, it is funny, I have been in north boulevard homes (which is almost completely gone) a while ago and I found it interesting - the unit was a 3 bedroom, 2 story townhouse that was quite big. Of course, it was trashed, but if someone had fixed it up and maintained it, it could have been pretty nice. Th problem is not what is built but what happens to it. Government owned, public housing has no real owner that cares about it. IT rots. That's why they have to do it differently - sell tehm with low cost loans for all I care - just take care of it.
 

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My opinion splits the two... I think that maybe 1/4 of the units should remain at most, with the rest being scattered around the city in 15-30 unit chunks (as part of other such developments and apartment complexes), so that there is basically no net loss...

And that indeed whoever lives in the these units should have no record of violent felonies or drug felonies, unless their record is otherwise clean for 5 years (out of jail)... In fact, people who live there and allow felons to live in thier unit should also be evicted... And like Smiley suggested, if you live in one of these units, you should be required to help maintain it as part of your deal for living there (like a mandatory homeowner's association). Elderly people can have a relative or friend help... Fat people can get off thier ass... the disabled can do paperwork or something.

And if people don't like free living with some reasonable rules, then go find a cozy spot under the interstate or out in the woods, and live life on your own terms.
 

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tonyff67 said:
I don't know why they are so concerned about replacing unit for unit. I have spent a lot of time in the projects and I would be really surprised if more than 10% of the people living there are truely down on their luck and need assistance. the other 90% are just lazy peices of crap that don't want to work.

I also don't understand why we have 2 and 3 generations in the projects. This is supposed to be ASSISTANCE, to help get you back on your feet. I think you should be limited to 5 or 10 years of free housing, after that find yourself a refrigerator box and move under the interstate.


P.S. I really hope some nice mixed housing goes in here. I think it maybe one of the most important pieces of real estate in the city. It will have an incrediable bearing on how the Downtown/ybor area continues to develop.
There is truth to your statements. However, you must realize that the current housing assistance and welfare policies/programs aren't truly designed to encourage people to increase their income. The whole system needs to be revamped -- but that's another thread for another forum.

Anyway, I agree with the 1-for-1 replacement as there is always a shortage of public housing units. It doesn't have to be in the Central Park location. In fact, the deal could be for the developer to pay the housing authority to build those units it chooses not to replace at the Central Park location.

1-for-1 can be done. The CRA of North Miami Beach recently worked out a deal with a developer that requires the creation of one "affordable" unit for every market rate/luxury unit created in their new development. Although that's not exactly the same thing as the situation with Central Park, it's an example of what cities can do. 1-for-1 is not impossible.
 

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^While I do agree that alot of the problem is there is little incentive for many of these people to become self sufficient, and that is solely the fault of our Gov't, I don't agree that they should replace them Unit for unit. As you stated there needs to be a revamping of the system. Once that is done, Hopefully only people that truely deserve assistance will recieve it, thus drasticly reducing the number of subsidised housing units needed.

I also think we should focus on Ownership for many lower income people, give them Zero intrest loans. People will take much better care of a place if they have invested something in it
 

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^What about my idea of scattering them about? That way, units can be easily converted as folks move out. I think the key here isn't so much to kick out current residents, but to basically shrink the population living in these units through attrition. When someone moves out, that's it. The unit goes back to market rate. Shrink it down to a smaller pool which is basically always there for folks who are just flat out in need, and leave it at that.

Also, quite building these BIG units like I've seen in other recent redevelopments, which invite subletting and so on. These places should be clean, sturdy and BASIC.
 

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^^^

What I learned from an urban government class I took is that one of the reason why "urban renewal" in the 70s failed was because the government forced those who did rise out of poverty out of the projects immediately.

London and Paris did not, and what happened was that the more affluent people stayed behind and tried to improve their community.
 

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Jasonhouse said:
^What about my idea of scattering them about? That way, units can be easily converted as folks move out. I think the key here isn't so much to kick out current residents, but to basically shrink the population living in these units through attrition. When someone moves out, that's it. The unit goes back to market rate. Shrink it down to a smaller pool which is basically always there for folks who are just flat out in need, and leave it at that.

Also, quite building these BIG units like I've seen in other recent redevelopments, which invite subletting and so on. These places should be clean, sturdy and BASIC.
The problem is that the pool of units isn't big enough for the current demand. Those units need to remain affordable to low-income individuals so that the next household in need can move in after one moves out, or (in this case) encouraged to relocate to a market rate unit within the development.
 
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