Not everyone likes what we do or plan to do.
On Tuesday, the day after our closing, The Dallas Business Journal posted a report on the progress we've made on our CityWalk @ Akard project.
Before the day was over, John Greenan (Executive Director of the Central Dallas Community Development Corporation) received this email message:
Although I applaud your interest in meeting the needs of Dallas County's poor, I read with horror the news article in the Dallas Business Journal today regarding the purchase of a downtown building to house low income and homeless persons.
Now that we're finally seeing some improvement downtown, including luxury condo development, you want to offer downtown housing to bums, crazies and drug addicts.
I noticed that 9 units will be priced at market value. Who in their right mind would rent an apartment in a tower of homeless people?
You've got to be kidding!
For that matter, how long do you think even moderately poor people will stay in your building?
I guarantee you that the building will be trashed and the project declared a failure within 12 months of opening.
Are you even going to rehabilitate the outside of the building? If so, at least some good will come of this Quixotian nightmare.
Please consider finding another outlet for your altruism before you stop the progress downtown.
As is often the case with critics, this gentleman gets the facts all wrong. CityWalk @ Akard will not be a "tower of homeless people." Fifty units of the 209 will be leased by formerly homeless persons. This ratio is well below some of the best national models. To be clear, we wanted the ratio to be closer to 50%, but the Mayor and City Council had other ideas.
I respect this fellow's right to express his point of view.
But, as I know you would expect, I couldn't disagree more.
It is clear he personally knows no one who is poor or homeless. If he did, his worldview would be much kinder and better informed.