Saturday, September 17, 2016

Finally, some economic development in Cambridge

By Samuel Insull
Business Editor

Cantabridgians learned Friday that there was finally some hope for their economic backwater, in the form of two proposed developments that would bring thousands of jobs to the clearly-depressed city with only a modest dollop of state aid.

Akamai Technologies announced that it was prepared to inject some business activity into the desolate wasteland of Kendall Square in the form of a 19-story office building and the possible addition of 700 jobs, conditioned on receiving an undisclosed amount of shtupping from a Massachusetts slush fund devoted to such things.

The new Spy building would be a beacon of hope for
the economically-depressed Harvard Square region
Later that day, a second ray of hope shone even more brightly.  The Massachusetts Spy Company LLC, in an announcement emailed from its headquarters in George Town, Cayman Islands,  said that it was prepared to move its online and print operations into Cambridge from its current facilities in Old Sludgebury, Mass. as soon as the Commonwealth ponies up $146 million in tax credits for land acquisition and other costs.  In return, it promised to create 701 jobs.

The planned development would require the taking by eminent domain of two underutilized parcels in the Harvard Square area.  One is located on Plympton St., between two Harvard dormitories; the other is a half block away on a musty triangle at the apex of Mt. Auburn and Bow Streets.

The parcels are currently occupied by two shabby day treatment centers for obnoxious undergraduates.  Residents have long complained about the shady and menacing characters lurking around them at all hours of the day and night.

“This project will bring much-needed economic life to the desolation that is Harvard Square,” stated Spy Managing Director for Community Relations Rollo Benjamins.

Under the plan, the Spy's online and printing facilities, together with 84 luxury condominiums, would be housed in a breathtaking 36-story tower to be built on the Plympton St. site, while the nearby Mt. Auburn St. triangle would be used for a ten-level parking garage and state-of-the-art car wash, to be named after legendary Cambridge statesman Al Vellucci.

“My grandfather always dreamed of a car wash in Harvard Square.  Now his dream is finally coming true,” said Spy Vice President for Development Michaela Vellucci.
The Spy project would replace two seamy local hangouts
for undesirables.

Reaction on Beacon Hill to the Spy's proposal was favorable.  State Sen. Cash Payment (D – Somerville) noted that as part of the proposal the Spy had agreed to employ a truck owned by officers of Teamsters Local 25 to haul stuff around.  State House eminince greased, the legendary Rep. Whiff “the Stiff” O'Bribe, said he expected that the project would provide scores of well-paid no-show jobs for his relatives [Surely, constituents? – Ed.].

It goes almost without saying that even in a desperately poor ghetto like Cambridge, a few unwashed anti-business Communists can be counted on to oppose anything resembling progress.  They questioned why businesses as large and profitable as Akamai and the Spy needed hundreds of millions of dollars of taxpayers' money to do what they would do anyway.

In an exclusive interview with anyone who calls him, Benjamins warned the granola-and-bicycle brigade not to stand in the way of economic opportunity.  “We would hate to leave Massachusetts for our alternative site in an old mill in Claremont, New Hampshire, but we will if we don't get every f***in' farthing of this modest tax incentive,” he warned.

State House leaders are taking the threats seriously and also appreciate the opportunity to clean up a pair of unsavory patches of blight.  Reached for comment, Governor Charlie Baker '79 was heard to mutter “it would serve the bastards right.”

No comments:

Post a Comment