So Donn Esmond and many preservationists believe the taxpayers should pony up $5.5 mil now to save the Statler rather than pay $15 mil later to demo it.
Donn thinks the math is simple, however, as much as I'd love to see the Statler saved, I have a few questions.
That $5.5 mil is the estimate for stabilization, NOT complete reno.
What are the estimates for the complete reno (give or take a few mil)?
If the city gives Croce and Eagan that money, what guarantee does the taxpayer have that they have the resources to complete the project?
Or will they merely recoup their $200,000 and stabilize the building which would allow it to sit for 5 or 10 more years?
If this is such a no-brainer, why is it still sitting there waiting for a white knight to come charging forth?
If Croce and Eagan are serious, why not try for some kind of "step" agreement - AFTER the building is stabilized (ie, they have made a serious commitment), the city will knock $xx dollars off the taxes owed and possibly some additional incentive, repeat as necessary.
What the area does NOT need is to spend $5.5 million and get nothing but an empty, albeit stable landmark.