The Day, the New London, Connecticut, newspaper brings the dispatch that things are stirring on the site of the failed redevelopment project that gave us the wretched Kelo case. In case you haven’t been following that intellectual, moral and economic disaster, in 2005 New London won its right-to-take case in the U.S. Supreme Court which approved its use of eminent domain to take an unoffending lower middle-class neighborhood in the Fort Trumbull area for “economic redevelopment” whereby the taken land would be given to a redeveloper for $1 per year, in order to build fancy shops, condos and a jazzy five-star hotel for the benefit of the well-paid employees of the nearby Pfizer pharmaceutical company.
But nothing came of it. The redeveloper could not get financing, funds for a proposed Coast Guard museum evaporated when the recession began, and the project failed at a cost of somewhere around $100,000,000 with nothing to show for it. The site has been sitting empty since 2005. And, adding insult to injury, Pfizer announced a few months ago that instead of providing lots of new jobs, it is shutting down its New London facility and moving out, taking some 1400 jobs with it.
Now we are told that the New London redevelopment agency (operating under the nom de guerre of New London Development Corporation), has struck a deal with a New York developer whereby he would be given the land, and build 80 townhouses on it at an estimated cost of $15 million. The developer must begin construction within 26 months. That presupposes that he will be able to obtain financing which his predecessor was not able to do. Rots of ruck on that one, folks.
The Day story is Kathleen Edgecomb, Company Signs on to Build Townhouses at Fort Trumbull, October 29, 2010. For the story go to http://www.theday.com/article/20101030/NWS01/101029521