Fiscal 2023 DIF Account

Telegram Nick K Column That We Do Not Own The Land: Our Response

To be very clear, we think Nick K does a great job and deserves hazard pay for covering the the Worcester City Council meetings the past 100 + years.    Today he wrote this column about the fact the City of Worcester does not own the land yet for the proposed stadium.

 Nick you could have at least acknowledged what inspired this column from you, LOL???      We will gladly say this post is a direct response  to Nick K's column.  Thanks Nick for reporting this.    

First Nick confirms the fact we do not in fact own the land, where the park is to be built and completed by April of 2021.   The land has not been transferred since "we continue to finalize the details of a LDDA (Land Disposition and Development Agreement).     Please note we have been working on this for quite some time.

Although nobody seems very concerned, the final details of this LDDA are very important to the taxpayers of Worcester; for example, the City’s Pro Forma calculates the following new revenue for year 2022, the first year of full debt service payments: 

Sources Amount 

  • Ballpark Taxes $ 147,167.00 
  • Parking Revenue $ 845,650.00 
  • LF Boutique Hotel & Retail Taxes $ 313,060.00 
  • WG South Hotel, Apartments & Retail Taxes $ 1,628,067.00 
  • Personal Property Tax $ 11,526.00 
  • Use and Occupancy Tax $ 571,388.00 
  • Advertising $ 156,000.00 
  • 8 City Revenue Events $ 40,000.00  
  • Source Total $ 3,712,858.00 

Uses Amount 

  • Debt Service $ 2,733,000.00 
  • Operating Costs $ 96,920.00 
  • 5% contingency $ 141,496.00  
  • Use Total $ 2,971,416.00 

Surplus $ 741,442.0

Bottom line the taxpayers are depending alot on the private development.  Phase 1, in particular is suppose to be completed the same time as the ballpark (April, 2021):

Phase 1 consists of $90 Million and approximately: 
450,000 square feet of development: 

 $40M - 2 hotels; approximately 250 rooms in total
  $40M – residential; 250 market rate apartments 
 $10M - ~65k SF of retail

We hope that the LDDA has severe penalties in the event Phase 1 is not completed on time, since the taxpayers will have to pick up the difference.     Our other main concern is how environmental issues will be addressed in this LDDA.   There are other concerns,  but these are the top two (1: private development schedule/penalties and 2: environmental).

Bottom line from Nick's column we have learned:
  1. We still do not own the land for the ballpark
  2. We still do not have a final LDDA 
Stay tuned... 


David Z. said…
As for your point the city still doesn’t own the ballpark site, there are 5.6 million reasons why this will be finalized by the end of September. Your other concerns about the phase 1 development being completed on time are definitely valid. BTW, the hotel overlooking left field has been replaced by an office building. Both hotels will now be built across the street.
Common Sense said…
I still worry if the market can absorb another 250 apartments in this area. One of the reasons why the Citysquare apartments are close to 100% leased is it attracts reverse commuters. These people are attracted by the low rents (as compared to Boston or the Metro areas). They can walk across the street and hop on the commuter rail to get to their jobs in Boston. Walking from the proposed Madison St. units to Union Station is quite a haul (especially during cold and inclement weather). As far as the new hotels, I worry because the new AC Marriott is struggling and the owner of the Beechwood said about 6 months ago that he barely breaks even. I hope everything works out, but I think we have reasons to be concerned.
Anonymous said…
Common Sense must mean commuter, not reverse-commuter, lol
Common Sense said…
I took the commuter rail for 5 years when I worked in Boston. I don't know how things are now, but I didn't find it reliable. There was always some issue causing it to be delayed. My boss was understanding for the first few times I was late. After that, he told me that if I wanted to keep my job I'd better find a more reliable form of transportation. I ended up having to drive to Boston each day and paying $36 a day to park. I hope thinks have changed now or we're going to see some of these Citysquare renters deciding not to renew their 12 month leases.
Anonymous said…
Those new apartments will unlikely every get built. Don't forget that the Mt Carmel Church property is also going to be developed right about the same time, probably with hundreds more apartments.