New Abatement Scheme Could Breath Life into Monaco Towers

Back in January, Roseland properties wanted to alter the terms of their 2006 abatement, from a 20 year program to 10. The developer was having trouble securing financing for the project even though they essentially broke ground last May. The council rejected the changes in January.

The 47 story project includes about 520 rental apartments; the project originally was planned as condominiums. After the council denied amending the abatement, the project was declared dead.

Now though the proposal is once again back before the city council according to the Journal. In order to keep the project alive, the council decided to revisit the issue. The developer had also made a previous payment in anticipation of construction, which the city would have to repay. With the changes, the city would no longer be liable for reimbursing the money, and there is a financial incentive for the development to be completed by 2011.

However, critics of the amendment, including downtown councilman Steve Fulop, insist that the change will lead to other developers seeking changes to abatement their plans, such as The Metropolitan, a 67 story tower planned for a lot adjacent to the Monaco towers, but that is also experiencing finance issues. Another prime candidate would be second, unbuilt Trump Tower. Like with the Monaco property, the developers have already made a abatement payment for the second tower and may leverage the money for a new payment program.

The council is expected to vote on the plan tonight.

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