Yesterday, in a 14-minute Special Business meeting that began at 4.45PM, the Binghamton City Council voted 5-2 in favor of building a parking garage on Water St. for $26,500,000.00, which includes taking out Bonds not to exceed $19,500,000.00.
The national average range in the United States for a parking garage is $7.5-12 million; the high end is $20 million. Why the need for such a high-end parking garage that will be privately owned? Why are we subsidizing Binghamton’s political bedfellows?
City Council is paying the architect firm less than $200,000 for a $26,500,000.00 project? In what capital project is that even feasible? For a project of this magnitude, architect firms would command 8-10% of a project’s budget!
What’s really going on here?
Why did this have to be rammed through?
The paperwork is not even in order! There are a multitude of mistakes where the paperwork has not been updated to reflect that this is just a parking garage capital project — beyond the Boscov’s roof fees for the architect:
- Page 5, C3 is blank
- Page 5, D still lists 5 story garage + 5 story residential units
- Page 6, YES is checked next to “New Residential Units”
- Page 7, D is blank
- Page 9, K is blank
- Page 10, N is blank
If you live here, ask your City Council person why they won’t spend money on things that will improve the quality of our lives…like affordable housing, a safe and clean environment, community programs to support a stronger city?
This city has lived too long under the cronyship that has historically defined our state.
Please be more involved — get to know your neighbors — help each other. This city is demonstrating time and time again that its priority is not making it better for all of us — it’s just to make it better for them.