Friday, July 17, 2015

No Sturgeon Dying In Trinity River While Largest Hotel In Texas Is Not Built In Fort Worth

Continuing on with our popular series of items I read in Pacific Northwest online news sources, usually the Seattle Times, which I seldom or never would read in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, today's Seattle Times had a Mother Lode of such items.

A few years ago in downtown Fort Worth no developer could see the viability of building a hotel, so the voters had to vote to provide funds so Fort Worth's Convention Center could add a hotel. Towns which have a lot of visitors with a lot of conventions need not resort to such measures to build a needed hotel.

A few days ago in a blogging titled Wondering Why There Are No Plans To Build Fort Worth A New Skyscraper I mentioned that rarely a week goes by where I will not read of some new big Seattle construction project, while this rarely happens in Fort Worth, and when it does, it always seems who ever is doing the building has been given a lot of incentive perks.

Regarding the lack of new development in downtown Fort Worth, Mr. Spiffy made an interesting comment on Facebook....

If you were a real estate developer and knew that the downtown plans for a new lakeshore may or may not happen - or may take another decade, would you commit your resources to that project? The Gator Island (let's change the name, please) project is slowing downtown progress. Or eliminating it altogether.

What Mr. Spiffy says seems so true. Downtown Fort Worth is stymied by the slow motion progress of America's Biggest Boondoggle. Why would a developer develop anything in the downtown Fort Worth area when, just to the north of downtown, there is this "project", which in one of its many name iterations was called Central City, which might be the place one would want to invest in, not in the existing downtown area.

If only the Trinity River Central City Uptown Gator Island Vision Boondoggle had been voted on by the public and fully funded in the way successful public works projects are, well, the project would likely be completed by now, with downtown Fort Worth experiencing a booming economy, rather than a downtown where one might still find a panther sleeping.

Or a gator.

The first item you see from the Seattle Times tells us of yet one more construction project in downtown Seattle. This time it is what will be the largest hotel in the Pacific Northwest.

The second item tells us dozens of sturgeon have been found dead in the Columbia River. I did not know sturgeon in large numbers were still navigating the Pacific Northwest rivers.

To give you an idea of how big a sturgeon is, that is Spencer Jack's dad's, dad's, dad's, dad, my grandpa, displaying a sturgeon he caught in the Nooksack River. The Nooksack is the furthest north of the Western Washington rivers, getting most of its water in summer from snow and ice melting on Mount Baker. I suspect the Nooksack River is currently in creek mode.

The third item of three clustered together in the Seattle Times, that one would not see in the Star-Telegram, tells us that Washington's legal pot businesses are set to make a lot of money. I have no idea why, or how. The Seattle Times only lets me read five articles a month. Which is five more than the Star-Telegram allows me.

That brings us to the fourth item I saw today on the Seattle Times front page which is unlikely something I would see in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

Can you imagine reading in the Star-Telegram "Downtown Fort Worth hotel development booms to meet record demand for rooms in Fort Worth"?

This is not the first time the Washington State Convention Center in downtown Seattle has expanded. I think the most recent expansion occurred since I've been in Texas, because I remember walking around in the downtown zone in 2004 and being surprised by a giant glass atrium spanning, I think it was 5th Avenue, and learning it was a new part of the Convention Center.

This latest expansion will double the capacity of the already HUGE convention center, is expected to cost $1.4 billion, with construction beginning in 2017, completion in 2020.

Imagine that, a project with a project timeline.

With its three year construction time, this Seattle Convention Center expansion must be a much simpler project than America's Biggest Boondoggle's three simple little bridges, connecting the mainland to the imaginary Gator Island, taking four years to build.

Near as I can tell, no child of any Seattle Congressperson has been given the job of overseeing this project. That may explain why this Seattle project will be a reality in 2020 whilst America's Biggest Boondoggle is still boondoggling along, trying to figure out how to dig a ditch and add water to go under those three simple little bridges to Gator Island.....

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