Apparently there is a line-up of developers waiting to get their hands on the McCormick building, three different developers to be precise. Yet, when the building went to auction starting at the low price of $744,250, which is what is owed in back taxes on the site, there were zero bidders. So, what happened to the line-up?
A clue to this seeming dilemma can be found buried in the pile of submissions for building the prosperity of London. There you will find this letter from Kilmer Brownfield Management Limited. In the letter Pamela Kraft of Kilmer expresses their interest in the ‘hydro lands’ located at 111 Horton St. As you may recall, this area was prominently featured for redevelopment in the vision plan for downtown London. Ms. Kraft highlights Kilmer’s experience in brownfield redevelopment and ensures the City that a mutually agreeable financial arrangement would be the first step of the process. What does this mean? It means that Kilmer would like to be in the front of the line if a money-making agreement on this 14-acre property is in the future.
Which brings us back to the McCormick site, and the fact that I do believe Councilor Orser that at least three developers have expressed interest in the site. However, the interest is not to buy it at cost, the interest is to be at the front of the line if a give-away is to occur. Is this a bad thing? Of course not. Heck, add me to the line-up if the property is being given away. What really needs to be asked is whether the City is doing due diligence to protect our public finances, which in this case of a property the City doesn’t own means at least getting the back-taxes out of it.