- Duncan’s Exaggerations Cut Against Credibility When Most Needed for School Project
- Duncan Maneuvers Benefiting Developers Is Documented via Freedom of Information
- Thin Fiscal Benefits from the Kensington Begs the Question: “Where’s the Beef.”
By Ira Kaylin
Kaylin is a Former Councilman and Financial Expert with a Long International Career
What a strange and head scratching reply from Council Member Phil Duncan to an article that deals with our ability to provide high quality education to current and future generations of our children.
“…the Kensington “end of life” facility — really? That’s some way to put out a welcome mat for The City’s newest citizens, who have started moving into The Kensington. Has this become Grinchville? I hope not. I think not. The Falls Church I call home is filled with folks whose hearts are NOT two sizes too small. Bringing this new business to town proves we mean it when we say we want Falls Church to be a community for all generations. The Kensington’s net fiscal impact is positive, and its architecture is rather more appealing than the site’s previous use (a real Whopper). The new home of Falls Church Arts will be a popular gathering place for the citizenry, and boosts the visibility of the arts as a pillar of our community. As for the other ground-floor space, we can either habitually trash-talk any effort to make progress in The City, or we can create opportunities for good things to happen and give them a decent amount of time to unfold.” Council Member Phil Duncan on FACEBOOK
Bait and Switch? For the record the Kensington, started out as a Senior Living project, morphed into a Assisted Living Home, then to primarily for Memory Loss patients and finally as a home for, by the Kensington’s own admission, individuals between 85 and 90 yrs old. Moreover, the Kensington has been very slow to contract a restaurant taunted as a meeting place while we understand it is angling to retain that space for its own business use.
The attempt at re-litigating the Kensington project appears to be a full throated effort to redirect the discussion from the fact the Acting School Superintendent has put forth a plan that could save the City between $50 million to $60 million. That plan would, however, interfere with the proposal to sell or lease all of the commercial land to developers now since the Superintendent’s idea would be staged to meet school expansion needs.
Duncan the “Deconstructor”: Phil you have tried the raze City Hall (the information was gleaned from FOIAs) and move Mt. Daniel School requiring new offices for the 170 dislocated City employees, a new jail and Court House. If memory serves you also wanted to move the Police Department to the Library location. So Phil who was going to profit by such a move–the Developers?
You then proposed that the Library be moved to a New City Center (which never occurred). Failing that you then tried to move the Library to the Mason Row project in order to make way for a mixed use project on the Library site. That scheme was exposed in a FOIA request.
Most recently you have been linked to yet another attempt at moving the Library to make way for yet another mixed use cum apartment project. The common thread in your actions is that they all benefit Developers at citizen expense. Over a five-six year period you have tried four times to move the library from its current location.
This begs the question …why?
Small Gains for City/Big Returns for Developers: The Kensington Project–one of the worst performing financial generators approved by the Council–is irrelevant NOW to the issues being discussed. It is a distraction and nothing more… though it is very revealing about positions you likely take when the GMHS continue forward, which could well be based on your previous positions, building more and more apartments that benefit developers and add costs to the schools and the city without SIGNIFICANT financial benefit.