My Platforms: Uptown Huntsville Development

“Mixed-use development” can be a very ambiguous term. At its root it just means a single real estate development that incorporates several different uses (retail, office, hotel, residential, etc.) But it implies that those uses are designed to work together and complement each other. 
The Committee to Elect Devyn Keith would like to give you our proposal of a Mix-Use development that would anchor North Parkway and be an impetus of growth for North Huntsville. When done correctly, mixed-use development offers great benefits:

For the developer, risk can be offset,  so if the office market tanks while you’re under construction (for example), well, you can lease the retail and operate the food market (Publix) project level.

To reduce risk as well as entice the developers, I would support use of the TIF program and would like to improve or expand it to cover additional areas of the city (North Huntsville), based upon need, progress towards existing goals, and feasibility given tax revenue projections. That being said, any expansion or alteration to TIF programs should be carefully studied before implementation (extensive needs assessment) so that tax revenues are not wasted on unsustainable projects (e.g. building boutique shopping venues in areas with no demand for such goods). The city has seen success with TIFs, so I feel the planning potential is there. Wherever possible, TIF opportunities should focus on bringing more opportunity into areas (e.g. providing stable and high-paying jobs to areas that have stagnated) and creating a stable base for more growth.

This will benefit all residents and businesses, as it will create jobs and increase aggregate demand for consumer goods (e.g. construction creates jobs, which gives workers enough income to eat at restaurants, which increases profits and tax revenues).Strategic incentive programs should take a long view and prioritize sustained growth over short-term gains. This will prevent waste and the subsidy of projects that create unacceptable risk to taxpayer revenue (this is the problem that ha derailed TIFs in CA and several other jurisdictions).