SC

What’s Holding Up Bull Street? Incentives …

DEVELOPER HAGGLING OVER AMOUNT OF TAXPAYER-FUNDED ASSISTANCE Earlier this week, we published a report (and accompanying photo set) on the abandoned government property in downtown Columbia, S.C. known as “Bull Street.” It’s been more than fifty years since this campus was at full capacity, more than two decades since most…

DEVELOPER HAGGLING OVER AMOUNT OF TAXPAYER-FUNDED ASSISTANCE

Earlier this week, we published a report (and accompanying photo set) on the abandoned government property in downtown Columbia, S.C. known as “Bull Street.”

It’s been more than fifty years since this campus was at full capacity, more than two decades since most of its buildings were abandoned, more than eight years since former S.C. Gov. Mark Sanford proposed selling the property and nearly two years since an Upstate, S.C. developer by the name of Bob Hughes agreed to buy the property.

In the meantime, the asset has lost more than half of its value (it was assessed at $32 million a decade ago) and the S.C. Supreme Court has stepped in to make sure that taxpayers won’t see a dime of the proceeds from the sale.

But why hasn’t this $15 million deal been completed?  Well, as it turns out the developer who purchased the property is still haggling with government officials over how much tax money the project will receive.  In fact the precise amount of this government subsidy is the “last remaining contingency” in the negotiations, according to a spokesman for the S.C. Department of Mental Health (SCDMH).

“The city and Mr. Hughes are still negotiating an acceptable contract,” the spokesman told us.

The project planned for this land – a $500 million mixed-use development – is currently slated to receive anywhere from $20-40 million in government-funded “infrastructure” incentives.  In other words, taxpayers are going to actually lose millions of dollars by selling this surplus asset … which we’re guessing was not Sanford’s intent when he proposed unloading it.

Amazing …

Leave it to government to turn selling a surplus asset into a money-losing proposition.

***

Related posts

SC

South Carolina’s Blue Crab Bill On Hold

Dylan Nolan
SC

Residents: Forgotten Gullah Cemetery Desecrated During ‘Clean-up’

Callie Lyons
SC

Southern Charm Saga: Kathryn Dennis Arrested For DUI

FITSNews

15 comments

johnb November 29, 2012 at 3:17 pm

government as usual

Reply
Nurse Mildred Ratched November 29, 2012 at 3:29 pm

They should agree to participate in one of my group therapy sessions. I have sessions available on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 4:00pm – 6:00pm. A convenient time because miss the rush hour traffic. Call me. References on file.

Reply
upstate November 29, 2012 at 3:46 pm

that’s a drastic change from past building liquidation schemes by the state. In the past they would sell asbestos containing buildings as not containing it, then put the screws to the purchaser as soon as closing was complete………

Reply
Meow November 29, 2012 at 4:02 pm

Incentives aside, but I live near this property and I am thrilled that they are going to convert it. I hope they get to work on it soon, as it will certainly boost my property value.

Reply
EJB November 29, 2012 at 4:12 pm

I believe the only reason that any public money is being sought is because of government interference. If the state just sold the property to the highest bidder, so to speak, and let them build anything they wanted (within reason – no landfills, chemical dumps, etc.) with no restrictions for historic reasons or any of the other BS stuff politicians try to stick developers with I would wager the developers would pay a much higher price for the property and wouldn’t ask for a single penny from the city/county/state. But no politician can let something like this get by them without siphoning off money and favors for payoffs.

Reply
sweepin November 29, 2012 at 6:32 pm

Well said. However, if such was done how would Fits/Folks find something to bitch about?

Reply
Joe Wilson Is A Very Smart Man! November 29, 2012 at 4:40 pm

Poor developers!

Reply
? November 29, 2012 at 5:49 pm

lol…they’d be better off to give the property away and provide no incentives.

What a bumbling bunch of moronic douchebags.

Reply
SC Southpaw November 29, 2012 at 7:36 pm

This property is effectively a brownfield. It will require subsidies to make it viable. All the infrastructure must be removed and replaced before being deeded to the City because it is all deficient (roads, sewer, water). All buildings loaded with asbestos. City could help and allow developer to bulldoze site but it requires rezoning to develop (we all acknowledge need for limits on development like prohibition of landfill). Rezoning is politically impossible without preserving some of buildings, walls, and gates. You may not like this reality but we live in an urban area where the citizens control zoning and development via local government. If you don’t like this, move to a rural area where zoning is less necessary.

Reply
just another guy November 29, 2012 at 9:11 pm

Sic, you know nothing about this. My family gave this property to the states crazies. Look up the deed and you will see that. So my family got the AG to sue to stop the money from going to the general fund bc that is not where the gift was given. The courts agreed and the proceeds must go to the metal health system. Do some research like a real reporter and stop writing crap like the Supreme Court did not want the state to see any money. That is bc they did not deserve any money. The gift was not too the state for that piece of property. BTW, we also gave the land TO THE STATE for the state house. Do the research ass hole.

Reply
Joe Wilson Is A Very Smart Man! November 29, 2012 at 9:16 pm

Fits is sort of like the old Communist Party

He sets out a line

And the facts sure as Hell aren’t going to interfere!

Reply
vicupstate November 29, 2012 at 9:19 pm

All good points, but SIC’s research basically stops at right-wing talking points.

Reply
Ron Aiken November 29, 2012 at 10:05 pm

Hey Just Another Guy, email me please at aikensc29@yahoo.com. I’d love to get that side of the story…

Reply
marty November 30, 2012 at 6:55 am

Thank you to Just Another Guy and his family for trying to look out for some of South Carolina’s most vulnerable population. Thank you for safe guarding your families’ decision.

Reply
just another guy November 30, 2012 at 7:38 am

Marty, It was given when Columbia was founded as the Capital so I can not take credit for it. It was my Great (Bunch of Great) grandfather. Just glad the Supreme Court agreed to uphold the states word on when they accepted the gift.

Reply

Leave a Comment