As I remember it, our City Council decided on the purchase of the Iron Horse Inn to supply affordable housing for city employees. I pictured, for example, housing for badly needed bus drivers.
I thought it wonderful that our council was putting into action what they are requiring of some private developers, to supply affordable housing. We, as taxpayers, are putting money where our mouths are. I am very indignant to hear the comments about reneging on this deal.
First, I highly doubt that one city-subsidized housing complex is going to make the private rental sector "not even try." Just take a look at all the massive construction going on - there are more condos and apartment complexes going up everywhere. And on those huge projects, the city is making them have some affordable units. I bet some of those units would not go in if not required by the city.
Second, flipping the Iron Horse for profit displays the short-sighted sell/make-money-now attitude in contrast to the long-term vision of providing much-needed affordable housing to attract and keep city employees. The council's intent was very clear here and motivated by altruism and need, not greed. After all, the city is not in the private business of flipping for profit.
Thirdly, it appears backing out or selling is going to cost us far more on many levels.
Lastly, I hope our council will come together on this and follow through with the support this project deserves. To revisit and fight over this is a willful waste of our tax dollars. We have seen far too many examples of fiscal loss due to personal agendas and squabbles in this town recently and we do not need another. We said we want affordable housing, now lets move on and accomplish it.