During the Q&A, one Heights resident brought up an interesting scenario. What if the city denies The Ainbinder Company the grants through the 380 Agreement and the resulting Houston taxpayer money? Would they still build it?
The answer from Michael Ainbinder was, “Yes.” Except, they wouldn’t have to play nice without the 380 Agreement. They wouldn’t have to make any improvements to the drainage, traffic or plant as many promised trees around the lot.
I don't get if all he said was 'Yes', or if he went on to say the rest, or if CultureMap inferred.
So, the Chron quoted Barton Duckworth next ...
Ainbinder President Barton Duckworth said the company would build the project even if the 380 agreement is not approved, but it may not look the same. "We couldn't afford to do all the neighborhood amenities," he said.
So, is this a threat; if the public doesn't agree to give tax dollars, then what? They will build a piece of junk? That just doesn't make much sense.
It would seem to me that a developer would need to have successful, nice looking developments to place in their portfolio, in order to help them win future business. This is just a reasonable conclusion; to get more business, its helpful for potential customers to be able to look at your past business in order to decide if they want to do future business with you. Thus, its in a developers best interests to build something that looks very, very nice.
In this case, and with this much attention, I personally have a hard time believing that a developer who has built nice developments before would build something not very nice. And here's what else; there's no guarantee that Houston gets what's been shown anyway, which is why its called an artist's 'rendition', or 'interpretation'.