Monday, February 19, 2007

$2M tag for Garden Theatre a 'bargain' - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

Bargain Fart. Garden Tart. Whatever. We got screwed and Zober expects us to send him roses.
$2M tag for Garden Theatre a 'bargain' - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review Nearly $2 million later, the city of Pittsburgh is soon to be the proud owner of a smelly old porn palace.

Water-damaged black ceilings, peeling red plaster walls and musty carpeting notwithstanding, city redevelopment leaders say the $1.1 million price tag to buy the X-rated Garden Theatre in the central North Side -- coupled with more than $700,000 for a decade of legal fees -- is money well spent.

'We got a deal, considering what our expected costs would (have been), even in the face of a victory at the (U.S.) Supreme Court level,' said Yarone Zober, chairman of the board of directors of the Urban Redevelopment Authority.
Yes. The legal climate in our city, our state and our nation has made a big shift in terms of eminent domain.

If I'm elected, I'm going to work in tireless ways against any and all efforts of eminent domain. Eminent domain stinks. It should never be used in this region. Property rights need to be respected.

Plenty of empty land and spaces exist to do the projects that need to be done without going to court. Eminent domain isn't necessary.

This city is very creative. The payment for court costs for eminent domain cases is now going to flow out of TIF windfalls. They over reach. They complicate. They do what should not be done. They spend today and borrow against the future. They work for the benefit of the special interest friends and against the taxpayers.

The Garden was taken so developers can profit from the spaces. They (city administrations) rob from Peter and give to Paul. (The 'Peter pun' was intended.) This is a clear case where eminent domain was leveraged by the government for the benefit of a private individual. The ownership of this space is being taken and the government is NOT going to build a highway, not building a school, not building a public building. There is no urgency for government ownership of that property. This building is not going to be a government owned facility. We paid for it but it is going to be given away to another to make the profits.

Stubborn barrier. Jeepers, "just say no." I'll be a stubborn barrier to all efforts at eminent domain.

Are any would-be purchasers in this deal named "John?"

The once-elegant Victorian-era commercial buildings have been boarded up for decades thanks to those who over-reach, like Tom Murphy and others in city government like him.

If theaters are so important for redevelopment, how come nobody cares about the space in the North Side's Carnegie Library?
From planning-urban

From planning-urban

They want, (get this quote), "bustle and action" -- and had the Garden Theater. They had action, hustle, bustle and muscle yet didn't realize it.

Honz Man, a Salvation Army guy, KDKA-radio big-government conservative, has been calling for a new tax on porn. Perhaps in a few months he'll be calling the loss of the Garden a loss of a new income source. They want to tax to hit 50-percent, greater than the cost of the parking tax, now at just 45-percent. They do it in Utah.

The city has taken the property by eminent domain and the city does not even have another use for the building. The city aims to keep the building as it is, as a theater. No wet labs are being built. No bio-tech incubators are on the horizon. Nope. We'll get productions like V* Monologues or something with Sienna Miller.

Also see: Pgh Dish blog.

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