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BGR In The News

City issues new RFP for former World Trade Center site

Oct 1, 2014

In August, the Bureau of Governmental Research urged the city to abandon its efforts to lease the property and instead sell it.

Source: The Advocate

Opinion: City needs to sell 2 Canal St.

Sep 2, 2014

The Landrieu administration should follow the suggestion of the Bureau of Government Research, which this week repeated a call it first made in 2009: Sell 2 Canal St.

Source: CityBusiness

Report: City should sell World Trade Center site

Aug 31, 2014

“There have been three failed attempts to do a transaction through a request for proposals, and we think it is time to try something new,” said Janet Howard, president of the Bureau of Governmental Research

Source: WWL-TV

World Trade Center building should be sold off to highest bidder, watchdog group says

Aug 26, 2014

“The city should set a minimum price that approximates fair market value and sell to the highest bidder willing to accept a redevelopment timeline with penalties, including a recapture provision for non-performance,” BGR said.

Source: NOLA.com | The Times-Picayune

BGR urges city to sell former World Trade Center building

Aug 26, 2014

The Bureau of Governmental Research again is urging the city to abandon its efforts to find a developer to lease the former World Trade Center building at the foot of Canal Street and instead to sell the long-vacant property.

Source: The Advocate

Our Views: BGR helped shape 2013

Jan 2, 2014

After a deeply partisan 2013, where will Americans find common ground in 2014?

Source: The Advocate

World Trade Center plans may endanger ferry service

Oct 1, 2013

In August, the city’s selection committee chose Gatehouse Capital Corp.’s proposal above two other submissions for modification of the New Orleans WTC site. According to a report by The Bureau of Governmental Research (BGR), which reviewed all three candidate’s submissions, Gatehouse proposed to maintain and renovate the WTC tower, unlike another bid, which called for its demolition.

Source: New Orleans Magazine

Questions of would-be WTC developers are revealing

Jul 17, 2013

The question of who would operate the consortium’s proposed structure also was raised by the Bureau of Governmental Research in a report released earlier this month.

Source: The Advocate

Iko-icon

Jul 9, 2013

As for the Tricentennial Consortium’s proposal, it’s hard to improve on the description by the Bureau of Governmental Research (BGR), which called it “an unspecified iconic tourist attraction.” Even more confusing, according to the BGR: The tower concept described in the RFP is merely a “placeholder” — which makes the rendering shown to the public meaningless.

Source: Gambit Weekly

Panel refines process for considering WTC proposals

Jul 2, 2013

(Chief Administrative Officer Andy) Kopplin, in the meeting, raised a controversial question about the city’s formal bid solicitation, which includes a vague dictate that proposals “should be privately financed,” with no further explanation. The Bureau of Governmental Research issued a report Monday criticizing that and other unexplained directives as “not exactly a mandate.”

Source: CityBusiness

Flaws undermine WTC redevelopment plans

Jul 2, 2013

A letter that BGR President and CEO Janet Howard sent to Mayor Mitch Landrieu in February described the city’s RFP as vague and ambiguous. Specifically, she was critical of the selection criteria and their unclear connection to the RFP’s goals as well as open-ended language concerning the use of public subsidies.

Source: CityBusiness

Bidders for World Trade Center site compete for public support

Jul 1, 2013

The Bureau of Governmental Research released an analysis of the three bids in a report titled ‘Three Visions For Two Canal Street’ which concludes that the future of the riverfront could hinge on the city’s choice.

Source: WWL-TV

BGR evaluates proposals for redeveloping World Trade Center

Jul 1, 2013

Before it selects a project to move forward with, the committee assigned to evaluate three proposals for redeveloping the World Trade Center should determine, among other things, the direct and indirect fiscal benefits of each proposal, the feasibility of the plans and the adequacy of the compensation the city will receive for leasing the distinctive building, the watchdog Bureau of Governmental Research said in a report released on Monday.

Source: The Advocate

BGR notes lean details in WTC site proposals

Jul 1, 2013

The committee of city officials that will review three proposals Tuesday to redevelop the former World Trade Center will not have at its disposal a current, city-commissioned appraisal of the 33-story tower, according to a report the Bureau of Government Research released this afternoon.

Source: CityBusiness

City considers what to do with WTC site

Jul 1, 2013

And just 24 hours before the selection committee is set to meet and rank the proposals, the non-profit Bureau of Governmental Research released a report on the bids. BGR isn’t taking a position on which proposal would be best, instead laying out the main points of each one.

Source: Fox 8

What Will Happen to the World Trade Center? City Meeting Tuesday

Jul 1, 2013

A watchdog group, the Bureau of Governmental Research, noted in a new report that the World Trade Center’s value hasn’t been appraised for several years. It says that makes it hard to tell if the city’s getting its money’s worth on any of the proposals.

Source: WWNO

New Orleans committee to evaluate proposals for former World Trade Center site on Tuesday

Jul 1, 2013

Also on Monday, the Bureau of Governmental Research released an analysis of the three proposals the committee will consider, offering no conclusions on which is the best but pointing out that their wide disparity and in many cases lack of specificity and detail could make it hard for the committee to reach a decision.

Source: The Times-Picayune

Empty New Orleans tower sits on prime site

Jan 12, 2013

Proposals and nascent deals to revive at least part of the building as a luxury hotel have died over the years as complex tax incentive and financing plans have fizzled. Part of the problem, said Janet Howard, head of the private watchdog group Bureau of Governmental Research, is that past efforts, which date back to the 1990s, “seemed to be politically driven rather than driven by the interest of the citizens of the city.”

Source: The Associated Press

Hospitality district, board could be in the works for New Orleans

Apr 29, 2012

“The proposed hospitality legislation raises a number of questions and issues,” said Janet Howard of the watchdog Bureau of Governmental Research. She cited the imposition of a new district on top of existing ones, the “appropriateness of the proposed boundaries and governance,” and provisions that would allow the board to authorize tax-increment financing districts and other sub-districts.

Source: The Times-Picayune

World Trade Center redevelopment appears ready to move forward

Jan 17, 2012

The Bureau of Governmental Research suggested in January 2009 that instead of trying to make a deal with another developer, the city should buy out the trade organization’s lease and then sell the tower and garage outright to a private developer.

Source: The Times-Picayune

City pays $2.24M for WTC building lease

Jan 17, 2011

Under that deal, the annual payment as well as $24.25 million of the one-time payment would have gone to the New Orleans Building Corp., the landlord of city-owned properties and developer of the publicly-owned riverfront that surrounds the mostly empty office building, with the balance committed to the non-profit trade group to reimburse them for past expenses. Yet, as Janet Howard, President of the Bureau of Governmental Research, urged on June 19, 2008, as a private venture, the city should have required the developer to pay the full 100 percent of the taxes that would otherwise be due—something that can be done under the current proposal.

Source: The Louisiana Weekly

City will buy lease on WTC

Jan 12, 2011

The Bureau of Governmental Research suggested in January 2009 that instead of trying to make a deal with another developer, the city buy out the trade organization’s lease and then sell the tower and garage outright to a private developer.

Source: The Times-Picayune

City of New Orleans considers demolishing the World Trade Center

Feb 4, 2010

The trade group has asked for a $6.2 million payment to terminate its lease of the building: $5 million that it was supposed to receive from the most recent failed redevelopment efforts, plus the $1.2 million lease termination payment that the Bureau of Government Research had suggested in a report last year.

Source: The Times-Picayune

Uncertain future for fast-fading WTC site

Jan 25, 2010

Clarkson and others, including the nonprofit Bureau of Governmental Research, believe the city should rid itself of largely vacant skyscraper by selling it.

Source: CityBusiness

Debate on the World Trade Center’s future is renewed

Oct 25, 2009

The litigation involving the latest failed bid to redevelop the World Trade Center building has been settled, raising questions about whether the city and trade club will continue with the same approach that they’ve been trying since 1998 to redevelop the building, which remains largely empty.

Source: The Times-Picayune

NOBC chief: WTC lease is better deal for taxpayers

Jan 16, 2009

The head of the New Orleans Building Corp. disagrees with a proposal by the Bureau of Governmental research to sell the city-owned World Trade Center building.

Source: New Orleans City Business

BGR: Sell New Orleans WTC building

Jan 15, 2009

Here’s an option for the New Orleans World Trade Center, a city-owned building that is waiting to be redeveloped after efforts that began more than 10 years ago: Sell it.

Source: New Orleans City Business

Bureau of Governmental Research report suggests selling the World Trade Center

Jan 15, 2009

Five months after a New York developer backed out of a 99-year lease for the World Trade Center, a watchdog group has issued a report urging the city to sell the building outright rather than pursue what it called another needlessly complex lease with a private investor.

Source: Times-Picayune

Credit Concerns Collapse WTC Deal

Sep 16, 2008

Redeveloping the World Trade Center at the foot of Canal Street could be years away, banking and development experts say, without an unexpectedly brisk turnaround of the global finance market or more public subsidy.

Source: New Orleans CityBusiness

Developers agree to bond World Trade Center overhaul

Jul 21, 2008

A layer of insurance for the city has been added to the 99-year lease that will transfer control of the World Trade Center into the hands of a private developer.

Source: CityBusiness

WTC Deal Under Scrutiny Again

Jun 23, 2008

For the second time in a decade, there is an attempt to convert the World Trade Center building into a hotel, but a
local good government group says that the tax abatements that for which the developer has asked are unreasonable.

Source: Louisiana Weekly

New Orleans World Trade Center controversy

Jun 22, 2008

For the second time in a decade, there is an attempt to convert the World Trade Center building into a hotel, but a local good government group says that the tax abatements that for which the developer has asked are unreasonable.

Source: Bayou Buzz

Watchdogs question WTC lease

Jun 19, 2008

The city’s efforts to place the iconic World Trade Center building in the hands of a private developer took yet another detour Thursday, as a government watchdog group took issue with several points in the long-term lease the city hopes to sign this summer.

Source: Times-Picayune

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