Archive for bumrejects.myfreeforum.org Open discussion on just about any topic
 


       bumrejects.myfreeforum.org Forum Index -> Local politics
Gene

City buys M&M - a sweet deal for some good old boy?

Absolutely the most asinine decision ever.  Kudos to Commissioner Freeman for her thoughtful comments and her vote.

The Chief of Police reporting over $200,000 spent in hundreds of police calls to the corner. What happened to undercover cops and video cameras and upfront law enforcement.

http://staugustine.com/news/local...2010-12-13/city-acquire-mm-market
bieramar

Quote from linked article:
"City Attorney Ron Brown said the owners were only two payments in arrears and that the building was assessed at $300,000. It was possible, Brown said, that the Patels' extended family could conceivably get the building back and open it again for business."

So all the Patels are crooks?

Is the City going to run a market there?  Feed the homeless?  Raze it and make it a park for people to congregate?  Fence it and plant flowers?  How about the "2-C-O Park" in honor of the King St./U.S.1 former car wash corner fiasco?
Mac IX

Considering that "Patel" is the Indian equivalent of "Smith," the "Patel extended family" could be fairly large.

I also wonder what they will do with it however.  I do think the neighborhood needs a grocery and that it does need to function somehow as a store.  I'm not sure how to do it either.

I'm not as concerned about it becoming a park as in the King/Rt 1 auto wash (at least it's a grassy, fairly nice looking site). I'm more afraid it will just go to ruin like Fiddlers Green out on Vilano or the old Water works/Rail road station. They are both just falling down. I've got to admit the building at Light house park that was taken over by the yacht club is doing well and is available to other groups at reasonable rates.  We need (a lot) more of that kind of thing.
puc reducks

That area needs a good market.

Remember the old IGA?  Across the street due west of the post office?  When that closed/was purchased by the Masons I shuddered to think what that neighborhood would do.  No public transportation then, not everyone has a car, or well enough to bicycle.

There's a real void in Lincolnville, and the need could be met by some honest entrepreneurs.

~~~~~
The Patel bust was a joint (no pun) op by SAPD and SJC.  Sheriff David Shoar lauded the SAPD for its participation, saying he'd like to see more such efforts.  Be careful, lads.  I'm getting a whiff of melded SA and SJC governments...
bieramar

puc reduck wrote:
The Patel bust was a joint (no pun) op by SAPD and SJC.  Sheriff David Shoar lauded the SAPD for its participation, saying he'd like to see more such efforts.  Be careful, lads.  I'm getting a whiff of melded SA and SJC governments...


My long time dream for St. Johns County and St. Augustine is a consolidated charter government, returning law enforcement to the choices of the citizens - instead of the current City Manager appointed Police Chief, and a powerful Sheriff czar ruling both Corrections and Law Enforcement under Tallahassee/Florida Constitution rules and alleged auditing.

The almost unlimited power of the county constitutional officers - beyond the oversight of local citizenry - is a remnant of class structures of a time which should no longer be allowed to exist.

And a city whose police aren't answerable to elected officials is a remnant of the past.
puc reducks

Love "sheriff czar"!  (The phrase, not the situation.)

For selfish reasons, I don't want the melding to occur until after a certain someone retires.

Then I look at the County council and ask myself, "THIS is animprovement?"  Shocked
Phred

Quote:
That area needs a good market.


And some have tried.

I've been working in and around Lincolnville for the past 20 years and have seen business enterprises come and go ... except for M&M (and now we know why it lasted as long as it did).  Back in the 90's the food stamp office was only a few blocks south on ML King ... a short walk to exchange those coupons (which were being used at the time) into cash.

I suppose, as Bieramar is fond of saying about government programs, that market added to the Lincolnville economy because the cash for stamps program meant more money being spent in the alleyways, behind buildings and often right out in the open in that whole area.

Local markets, barber shops, bars (and now even the park at the end of Riberia) all gone due to (for lack of a better word) non-participation by the local residents (and for the park, government intervention/management).

I see they're replacing/rebuilding/building new sidewalks on ML King but, alas, poor ol Riberia continues to deteriorate with South St following closely behind.

But yet local government continues to issue building permits for both businesses and private residencies that attract more and more traffic, especially commercial traffic.

Navigating those narrow streets with on street parking in an oversized commercial vehicle can be a hair raising  experience, especially when you throw in idiotic bicyclists roaming aimlessly in and out of traffic.

It's only a matter of time until another Masters Dr incident occurs then, of course, they'll simply add speed bumps.

For those that don't get to Lincolnville much ... there are many businesses at the end of both Riberia (to the west) and Marine St (to the east).  These include a nursing home, COA headquarters, restaurants, a new, large condo complex and a military site at the very end of Marine St and massive marina/boat repair/sales at the end of Riberia, along with a City water treatment plant.

There are only three main arteries in and out of Lincolnville ... Riberia, ML King and Marine St ... and all three have the same problems.

Anyone have the opportunity to see an 18 wheeler pulling a large sailboat make the turn from Riberia onto King St while headed for US 1?  It's an experience.

So, while I agree that a good market is sorely needed in the area I don't believe there is enough support for it ... at least not yet.

And, as far as turning the M&M into some type of museum, well it didn't work so well at the Excelsior School building ... another landmark ready for the wrecking ball.

Government get out of the way, let private enterprise handle the M&M building's future.
puc reducks

The Riberia Street Project is slated to begin Jan. 2011.  Repair of the road between King and Bridge Streets is the first phase.  Also, while that's being done, they'll replace some underground utilities.  Likely, two or three phases in all.

Should local government be in the business of acquiring real estate?  Not, in my opinion, with public funds.  And certainly not when the property is taken off the tax rolls.

Drug sales now occur out in the open on Dumas.  Not even a ripple in THAT enterprise.

Let's just remove the "historical" component here.  The City doesn't have staff, etc., to assess the structure from a historic pres standpoint, to perform historic preservation techniques in rehabbing, or to interpret it.  Don't forget:  The loose and goosey Spanish Quarter still lives, with barely a pulse, to siphon funds from the reserves.  Has the Dept. of Heritage Tourism ever heard of grant writing?

Agreed that local government should step aside.  Good intentions, I believe, but we all know where THAT road leads.
Phred

Quote:
The Riberia Street Project is slated to begin Jan. 2011.  Repair of the road between King and Bridge Streets is the first phase.  Also, while that's being done, they'll replace some underground utilities.  Likely, two or three phases in all.


And I expect a replay of the West King St venture, what was that, a year or more?  How about a year or more per phase for Riberia?

Riberia is only an example of the problems in Lincolnville.  Street repair should have been done down there decades ago.

But, spilt milk and all that ... anyway, now that wome white folk have moved in maybe it'll get better.
puc reducks

Phred wrote:
Quote:
The Riberia Street Project is slated to begin Jan. 2011.  Repair of the road between King and Bridge Streets is the first phase.  Also, while that's being done, they'll replace some underground utilities.  Likely, two or three phases in all.


And I expect a replay of the West King St venture, what was that, a year or more?  How about a year or more per phase for Riberia?

Riberia is only an example of the problems in Lincolnville.  Street repair should have been done down there decades ago.

But, spilt milk and all that ... anyway, now that wome white folk have moved in maybe it'll get better.


I have no idea whether your expectations will be met, Phred.  Does it really matter if it's a replay?  IT IS GETTING D-O-N-E.  Can never please everyone.

The shoulda-coulda-wouldas will stop one in one's tracks.  There IS a bright side.  But it's easier to bash the City and the white folk.

Nothing is ever done well enough or fast enough, right Phred?

Can't please everyone, but there is value in acknowledging the good stuff, too.  IMO anyhow.

YOU singled out Riberia and Bridge Streets.  I was replying to YOU.  OF COURSE more needs to be done in Lincolnville.  I don't know where you'd get an argement on that.  You may wish to remain focused on the negative, but some things are getting done.

Bah humbug, Phred!   Razz
Mac IX

As noted above, I'm not "in love" with the idea of the city taking over the property, but I sure don't think it should stand there derelict and vandalized.  Of course, it only helps (as I said above) if they actually do something with it.
puc reducks

Mac IX wrote:
As noted above, I'm not "in love" with the idea of the city taking over the property, but I sure don't think it should stand there derelict and vandalized.  Of course, it only helps (as I said above) if they actually do something with it.


It's prime real estate, even in this market.  I don't know, just surmising, that the locale won't be vacant long.  And if vandalized, there will be an end put to that.  It's all boarded up, BTW.

But the Chill Grill is still operational.  Is it Rasta chow?  *grin*
Phred

Quote:
Does it really matter if it's a replay?


Oh I don't know Puc ... we could go ask the business owners on West King that didn't make it.

Quote:
There IS a bright side.  But it's easier to bash the City and the white folk.


Having a problem seeing the bright side right now and wasn't bashing the white folk ... City?  Yes.

As a matter of fact, the black folk down there might deserve a little "bashing" also for not joining forces, acquiring political clout and demanding that this stuff be done decades ago.

Quote:
Nothing is ever done well enough or fast enough, right Phred?


Of course it is ... hey, the City got that ugly ol car wash outta there and got the grass growing in record time.  If that hotel complex hadn't gone belly up, Riberia would be a nice, smooth street from King to Bridge already.

Quote:
YOU singled out Riberia and Bridge Streets.


Yes, I did and I did because that area and those streets are of particular interest to me cause I work and drive down there.

Look, St Augustine's infrastructure, roads primarily, are in a state of disrepair due to lack of ongoing maintenance.  Doesn't matter where you look ... north city, downtown, out west ... it's all bad.  King St, one of the main arteries in and out of the city has manhole covers with a two inch lip around it.  Know what that does to a person in a wheel chair in my van if I hit it?

I drive like I'm drunk on King St, swerving back and forth in my lane trying to miss the bumps, potholes and those manhole covers.

Quote:
Bah humbug, Phred!


Yeah, I do get a little humbugish this time of year.  It shows huh?  Oh well, it's off to the bar for a little attitude adjustment ..  Wink
puc reducks

Here's some quick info re the history of the structure at 102 Bridge Street:

http://staugustine.com/news/local...ing-once-owned-jefferson-relative
puc reducks

Hey, Phred!
I hope the "-bugish" part of your hum-buggishness isn't painful in any way!  Laughing

Infractrusture???  OK. First thing in my mind:  the sewer lines downtown. Barely hanging on.  Long overdue for a re-lining.  Meanwhile, every time a toilet flushes, an engineer get his/her wings.

I hate to use the term, but "collateral damage" seems to work here re whatever businessess went bust on King Street.  No.  That's being flip and snarky.  It was more a combination of The Economy overall.  Who can say how those businesses would have fared?  Besides, who issues the Guarantees on prosperity to any business owner?  It's pay yer money and takes yer chances.

Yes, well, that IS a major component of the "problem."  How does one force a community/neighborhood to take up its own cause?  The City also is NOT in the business of social work.  Where does motivation come from?  GOOD LEADERS.  You know more about Lincolnville than I do, so who is/are the leaders in that community?

Easy to sit aback and and snicker and judge.  For me, however, it is HOW things are done, not always WHAT is done (or not done).  Agendas, agendas, agendas.  It's so disheartening to have personal political agendas run any place, and that holds true here.
bieramar

Phred wrote:
I've been working in and around Lincolnville for the past 20 years and have seen business enterprises come and go ... except for M&M (and now we know why it lasted as long as it did).  

Back in the 90's the food stamp office was only a few blocks south on ML King ... a short walk to exchange those coupons (which were being used at the time) into cash.

I suppose, as Bieramar is fond of saying about government programs, that market added to the Lincolnville economy because the cash for stamps program meant more money being spent in the alleyways, behind buildings and often right out in the open in that whole area.

Local markets, barber shops, bars (and now even the park at the end of Riberia) all gone due to (for lack of a better word) non-participation by the local residents (and for the park, government intervention/management)....

Government get out of the way, let private enterprise handle the M&M building's future.


Working backwards in your comments, I agree that private enterprise should handle that property's future.  If the Commissioners don't backtrack and let the bank holding the mortgage proceed, they should promptly sell it.  As they should sell ALL taxpayer-owned properties, and get them back on the tax rolls - and leave them there.

I differ with your opinion on why the businesses in Linconville died, however.  I frequented the Lincolnville businesses during the '70s and '80s, beginning in 1971 when I worked out of the State of Florida Division of Family Services (including Food Stamps and Childrens Services) which was located a few blocks west of the M&M - then a store/gas station with ice cream & beer & sandwiches through the window*.  Most of my family's friends - black and white - lived and/or worked in Linconville (pre-gentrification) in the 1970s, and we all frequented the business establishments.  

There were successful businesses on all three "main" streets - all frequented by the local black residents and a small minority of whites.  There was one black SAPD officer assigned to Lincolnville (formerly called "Little Africa") who was provided a bicycle - until the late 1960s when he was provided a real cop car.

What newcomers don't realize was that racial integration didn't disappear with the 1964 events and federal law, or the late-1960s federal court-ordered desegration of the public schools in Flagler, St. Johns and Duval counties. Not only private segregation, but also institutional city/county segregation, continued into the early 1970s.

One of the reasons for and results of the 'de facto' and sometimes 'de jure' segregation policies through the early 1970s was what Judge Charlie Mathis used to call "benevolent patronizing racism."

Not the baseball bat, gun, and horsewhip carrying KKKs or Manucy's Raiders, or the evangelical white Christian haters, or the white trash thugs of the movies (and who WERE in St. Augustine and DID do horrible things).

But it was the "regular" white folk whose children were raised - and often wet-nursed - by black "mammies," whose lawns were cut by black "boys," who thought pickannies were cute as a bug, and whose stereotypical beliefs were fueled by the Step'n'Fetchit representations in the movies, who without conscious malice continued the tradition of segregation.  

Nigrahs (as distinguished from niggers, which was the term used by the hating racists) were viewed by the benevolent patronizers as not expecting or deserving what the white folks did - such as sidewalks, street lights, police and laws.  

They (nigrahs) were not expected to appreciate property values, and white laws based upon morality and ethics. Therefore "the man" and "the establishment" didn't enforce zoning laws, construction codes et al in Lincolnville - pretty much from the end of the Civil War when the Lincolnville name was chosen until the early 1970s.

It was during the early days of desegregation and the simultaneous beginnings of gentrification in Lincolnville in the 1970s when enforcement of law began in earnest - zoning, code enforcement, white cops patrolling - and the profit margins of the successful businesses simply didn't allow for coming into compliance to fix a century of neglect and nonenforcement.  That process, combined with the influx of the gentrifying white people buying property and bubbling taxes up were what killed the economics of Lincolnville.

*Incidently the St. George Tavern also sold ice cream, beer and sandwiches through its front window during that period.
puc reducks

Bieramar wrote:

"It was during the early days of desegregation and the simultaneous beginnings of gentrification in Lincolnville in the 1970s when enforcement of law began in earnest - zoning, code enforcement, white cops patrolling - and the profit margins of the successful businesses simply didn't allow for coming into compliance to fix a century of neglect and nonenforcement.  That process, combined with the influx of the gentrifying white people buying property and bubbling taxes up were what killed the economics of Lincolnville."

Amen to that.

How to fix it?
Phred

No doubt, or question, about Lincolnville's history but my posts reflect my feelings and personal experiences down there in the 90's and continuing today.

For example ... a coworker's relative opened a beer/wine bar on Riberia and did a good job fixing up the old building with her limited resources.  Try as she might, she just couldn't get local folks to come in even though it was clean and even air conditioned.

I was a regular there several happy hour(s) a week and enjoyed mixing it up with the four or five other regulars that did come in.

She lasted less than a year.

My point is that she had no problem with the City/County in obtaining permits and no updates (code compliance) to the old building.  I realize that it's only one example but it does show that exceptions, as of that time, were still being allowed.

Across from the school (now cultural museum) on ML King is the site of many failed enterprises during the past 15 or so years.

I see that a new community market just opened in that location within the past week or so, perhaps to replace the M&M.  Wish them well.

Regarding the streets down there, please understand that I drive an oversized, six-wheel van (or bus if you prefer) with frail, often sickly human cargo in wheel chairs so I'm probably a little more sensitive to those road conditions than most other drivers.

But, that still doesn't excuse the City for the lack of attention in that area.

       bumrejects.myfreeforum.org Forum Index -> Local politics
Page 1 of 1
Create your own free forum | Buy a domain to use with your forum