Monday, February 07, 2011

Standard-Examiner: Inn May Bring Businesses to Ogden

15,000 square feet of building space north of the Hot Tub Hotel?

There's a Hot Tub Hotel topical Scott Schwebke story in this morning's Standard-Examiner which might be worthy of some discussion this morning:

Seems child molester Hotel developer Kevin Garn is "currently negotiating with several restaurants and retail establishments to occupy 15,000 square feet of building space north of the hotel at 2275 Washington Blvd.":
Gentle reader ND asks a couple of good questions, along with some commentary in one of our comment sections below:
Why are we building new retail space down there when there are empty spaces available... of course we can't say who the new businesses are can we.... 50 parking spaces... thats a joke... How many hoteliers are going to just use the surface parking near existing retail...I envision a log jam....
Who else would like to chime in on this topic, now that ND has set the pace?



Possible motive for this announced project: Cover for Blain Johnson and his cronies. Envision Ogden and FNURE have not been in the news lately because these city projects are receiving all the ink. Could this also be the motivation for the Wonderdome? This may not convince everyone since it seems like a lot of work, hassle and resources to accomplish this but have you seen the financial statements for the Junction lately? Maybe we missed the cover that provided at the time?

Curmudgeon said...

The interesting thing is not the musings of Messers Garn and McConkie regarding what "may" happen with the hotel development. They can speculate til the cows come home about what may or may not result if certain [un-named] conditions are or are not met that satisfy the requirements of several [un-named] businesses which might, someday, agree to be part of the project. Or might not. That kind of speculating is lots of fun, a fact-free game that anyone can play.

The interesting thing is: why in the world the SE thinks it has to begin thumping [and on the front page, above the fold] whatever tubfull of "mays" the Ogden City development office or some real estate promoter places before it. There was no story here. Mr. Garn's speculating about how some companies he won't name may occupy retail space in his project , which space he'd previously said was being dropped from the project entirely, is not news, nor is Mr. McConkie's saying how nice it would be for Ogden's hard-pressed taxpayers if Mr. Garn's speculating turned out to come true. And I note the story doesn't mention that Mr. Garn had previously announced, and the SE reported, that his hotel project would not include the retail space he'd originally planned to include. Has the scope of the project changed again? [Remember the now-you-see-it-now-you-don't underground parking lot that was once deemed essential to the project's success, until the banks funding Mr. Garn's share of it all refused financing, at which point, magically, the parking garage became not really important at all and was dropped.]

When Mr. Garn can announce that X companies, which he will name, have signed contracts to be part of the project, that will be news. Until then, all we have is more Development Office hopin' and wishin' and dreamin' made up to look like news and paraded across the SE's front page.

What is truly surprising is that the SE continues to run, as news -- and as front page news -- "may" stories from Hizzonah's administration. Chinese merchants "may" open retail outlets in Ogden, the SE told us after Hizzonah's boondoggle trip to China. But they didn't. Mexican merchants "may" open retail stores in Ogden the paper reported after Hizzonah's boondoggle trip to Mexico. But they didn't. Major outlet stores, the SE told us during the latter months of Hizzonah's re-election campaign, "may" open in the city-rehabbed Washington Blvd. stores "in time for Christmas." But they didn't. '

And yet, this morning again, on the front page, above the fold, the lead story: another non-story filled with "mays."

Why? This just wasn't news. At most, on a slow news day, a minor note on the business page. At most.

Tom said...

The following was posted on the Standard site in answer to a poster who wondered why Ogden tax payers were putting up millions for a hotel while WVC was only putting up fifty thousand dollars:

The reason that WVC is only ponying up fifty thousand and Ogden is getting stung for several million is that the proposed hotel in WVC has actually been deemed to be economically feasible by the hotel developers, thus they are willing to take all the financial risk to build it.

The Ogden proposal on the other hand is not economically feasible enough for any private developers to take the risk, therefore the mayor, in his infinite financial wisdom, has decided to let the tax payers of Ogden take the very large risk of building it.

This of course is how he operates with most of the major money losing projects the poor put upon tax payers of Ogden are taking it in the shorts for. That is why the tax payers of Ogden are in a massive hundred million dollar hole right now over a pile of loser projects like the Junction. None of the mayor's pet projects actually make money and most are being subsidized by millions of dollars that come from the BDO. Those millions of dollars were supposed to go into Ogden's infrastructure to make the city a better place for all citizens but isn't. Instead it is mostly going into the pockets of the mayor's cronies.

The saddest part of the story is that even though Ogden citizens are involuntarily being placed in the position of being high risk venture capitalists, they will not share in any potential profit like normal high risk capitalists do. There is a very slim chance any of this will actually ever make any profit, thus the need for large public subsidy. All the profit, if any is ever realized, will go into the pockets of the mayoral cronies.

AWM said...

This buffoonery can all end during the next city election...just saying

Danny said...

Great comments. Here's another observation. From the article,
The addition of retail shops and restaurants on the hotel property would be beneficial, said Richard McConkie, the city's community and economic development director.

"Any restaurants or retail businesses would complement the hotel as well as the rest of The Junction," he said.
Are these not some of the most stupidly obvious statements imaginable? Can McConkie not refrain from embarrassing himself? Can the Standard Examiner not refrain from printing this lazy, news-free dreck from Scott Schwebke?

Curmudgeon said...


Sorry, the story was not "news free." That KG is looking for businesses to expand the scope of the Hotel Project is news. It's just at this point [absent the names of the companies he's courting] not particularly significant news, and it's, absent those names, a wholly unverifiable story. But it did contain information we didn't know before. Just not much of it.

And the credit [or blame] for Mr. McConkie's plain vanilla boilerplate statements lies with... Mr. McConkie. If that's what he said in his capacity as development guy for the city, then that's what he said, and the SE should have reported it.

I think the SE missed the real news hook: that the scope of the project is changing again, that the retail element that was in the original plan, that Mr. G. then assured the Council would not be in the plan, is apparently in the plan again. But that was not the story the SE ran.

Finally, once again: I think the SE is getting the business and city beat reporting its editors want. If we have problems with the SE's news judgement, we ought to take it up with them, not with the reporters. It's the editors who decide what they want covered and what kind of coverage they want.

Bill C. said...

Curm, what I gathered from this huge news event is that having built his holdings while serving(?) in the legislature, Hot tub is just looking for ways to collect more (free) dollars for this silly project. So far he hasn't even purchased the land.

ozboy said...


so how did Hot Tub make his fortune? (I simply luvs your shortened moniker - "Hot Tub" for our former esteemed (before he was disesteemed) State Legislator/Biz Tycoon K. Garn - not to be confused with his non-relative Jake).

From what I have heard he pretty much started out with squat and through his driven personality, hard work, religious connections and a little bit of luck built himself and his family a nice fortune. It Sorta sounds like the great American story. I think a lot of what he built might have been done before he had a lot of juice in the Legislature, and it was his biz successes that put him on the leadership track when he did get to the state house. I also assume that his biz successes were also nicely enhanced by virtue of his "serving" in the big game on Capital Hill.

It would be interesting to see his actual resume, perhaps some one in WCF land knows the real story about good old Hot Tub and his rocket ride from the old Chevrolet set - to the hi-flying jet set?

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