Comment 36969

By Zero Cockup (anonymous) | Posted January 11, 2010 at 20:27:18

It's not as if downtown speculators are anything new, though. They were probably out in force when the Century closed -- the Snidermans seem to own a few choice properties around that time. It's not speculation that's the problem -- David Blanchard could be called a speculator of a sort, and can't-lose real estate investment is part of Hamilton's sales pitch to the rest of the country -- as much as it is the cynical MO of these bush-league developers whose lack of creativity is apparently only superseded by their lack of liquidity. Anyone who recalls the Spec's "Lament For A Downtown" also knows that many of these chronic rot issues were identified almost 9 years ago. Unfortunately, it's a lot easier to issue loan cheques than it is to inspect buildings or summon up the political will to wage battle after battle for an area of the city that many people wrote off long ago. Revamping the property development loan process is obviously overdue. But legislative change is also needed. Cases like Toronto's 7 Austin Terrace go to show that developers cannot be relied upon to find the high ground without persuasive input from a firm whip hand.

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