Analysis: Will the Council Approve Both Hotels?

External view with privacy screen/ rendering by HRGA
External view with privacy screen/ rendering by HRGA

Believe it or not, tonight may mark the first real test of the Davis City Council.  Unless you want to count the 3-2 vote on August 31 – two months ago, on Gandhi – this is the first hot, local issue of great significance that the council will have to grapple with.  For Will Arnold, this is his official christening of his tenure on the city council.

For the last several months, as issues of development and land use have percolated in the community, the council has been in the back seat.  Really, their last major decision on this front was the decision to put Nishi on the ballot – that was February.

Since then, the community decided narrowly to vote down Nishi, the community has debated the LRDP, the community has discussed issues like Trackside and Sterling Apartments, and the planning commission has weighed in on the two hotels.

Until a council has to make a decision in the hot box – as we called it, community chambers jammed full of angry people on both sides of an issue – and make a tough call, it is hard to predict.  In recent years, we have seen the council make tough calls on divided votes on Mission Residence and Cannery.  We have also seen the council make tough calls on unanimous votes on issues that were controversial like the Hotel Conference Center and Nishi.

The council will have an interesting array of decisions to make – perhaps as soon as tonight, though they may push the decision off for a few weeks.  The decision was made to put both hotel proposals on for the same night – perhaps a good decision that forces the council to decide the projects in comparison.

One decision will be easy.  The second decision of course.  The Marriott Residence Inn is largely a no-brainer.  No one is really opposed to it.  The site looks like a good site for a hotel.  It has access to space and the freeway.  It is not in close proximity to existing residences.

You would think that council would consider the no-brainer first.  That would then make the decision on the Hyatt House simple – does the city need two hotels to be added, and do they need the second hotel to be in the current location?

While the Residence Inn will draw little opposition – perhaps prodding on the issue of LEED Certification – we would expect, based on attendance at the planning commission, that dozens of neighbors will come up to speak against the other project, while a dozen downtown and other business owners will come forward to speak in its favor.

The HVS study commissioned by the city concluded the following.  First, “there is some degree of new hotel development opportunity in Davis. Occupancy levels are exceeding historical highs, and average rates have continued to increase year-over-year.”

They point out, “The success of the Hyatt Place hotel further exemplifies this market’s need for quality branded hotels that can complement the needs of the University and its patrons, including visitors, students, employees, and others.”

As a driver, they see, “The growth of the UC Davis has been steady, and future plans call for increased student enrollment and facility development, all factors that bode well for hotel performance.”

The key question they have is “what new demand sources are coming to Davis?”

In the environment of December 2015, they found that “the near-term development of a conference hotel facility with the addition of an extended stay hotel to be developed shortly thereafter poses the option that would be most beneficial to visitors, the City of Davis, other hotels in the market, and the overall community. The viability of a second extended-stay facility within the same development timeframe would potentially compress RevPAR levels enough to question the likeliness of total revenue growth.”

They write, “Our opinion concludes that the addition of another hotel, specifically another extended-stay facility, would not benefit the market for another four to five years after the initial extended-stay hotel has opened.”

Opponents of the Hyatt House understandably have hung their hat on that finding.  However, the world has changed.  First of all, the development of the hotel conference center on Richards Boulevard is not a certainty.  But, more importantly, first Sierra Energy and now Fulcrum’s expansion into the Cowell-Richards Corridor completely changes the nature of new demand growth.

That was the focal point of Monday’s column.  Skeptics argue that we have made too much of this land purchase.  They argue it is premature to make bold predictions.

In a way, that is not our call.  After all, if investors want to risk their money building a new hotel, let them.  That said, between Sierra Energy and Fulcrum, we are looking at $100 million in new investment into that area for starters, and a hotel that can anchor some of that business development seems more needed now than it was even a month ago.

The neighbors, of course, see it otherwise.  In a lengthy 7000 word piece they made four central arguments against the hotel in that location.

First they argue that the proposed Hyatt House project “is incompatible with the Rosecreek Neighborhood setting.”  As one of the commenters put it, the reality is that you are putting a hotel on a frontage road that backs up to a neighborhood separated by a greenbelt.

The incompatibility seems like a lot closer call in reality than it does on paper.  You’re talking about a building that is basically the same height as that allotted by the zoning.  The usage is probably less invasive than other potential usages.

The density is greater than that allowed under existing zoning, but even that is not as black and white as it seems.  The developers and architects have gone a lot way to protect privacy.

“The Hyatt House has falsely misrepresented the nature of their project as a purely ‘extended stay’ hotel to minimize neighbor concerns,” the neighbors claim.

They write, “The 24-hour nature of hotels also creates noise factors even though developer claims extended stay hotels minimize daily in and out travel and associated noise.”

But for all the concerns that this is a 24/7 operation, remember, it’s a 24/7 operation that people have to sleep in. In other words, when I stay in a hotel, if I find it noisy and difficult to sleep in, I’m going somewhere else next time.

The article also argues that they have “misrepresented the extent of the ‘concessions.’”

Here, I think, there is room for further compromise.  If the council believes this hotel is needed, they will likely focus their efforts on minimizing impacts to the neighbors.  My general sense is that the hotel developers have gone a lot further in their desire to compromise than the neighbors have.  The neighbors have generally taken the view of opposition to any hotel.

Much has been made of the 4-3 vote by the planning commission.  But, drilling down, there is considerable nuance to that vote.  For instance, George Hague said that, while he did not think this was the best location for a hotel, at the same time he did not see the problems with the current site as insurmountable.

Rob Hofmann expressed concern about the poor location, but said that he did not see those concerns as insurmountable.  He noted it was commendable that the developers have gone as far as they have to address privacy concerns.

For him, a big sticking point was the resolution passed by the city council regarding establishing criteria for evaluation of hotel proposals.  Without this direction, Mr. Hofmann indicated he would probably have gone ahead and supported the project.

The neighbors’ article does suggest a potential compromise: “Many of the Rosecreek neighbors have also stated they would either support (or at least not oppose) a reduced size Hyatt House project if the building were reduced from a 4 story to a 3 story building with the same footprint as allowed under current code (thus reducing the room count to 90 or less) and moving the parking underground.”

There was some debate in the comments as to whether that represents something workable – after all, underground parking adds millions to the cost and reduction in stories takes potentially millions in revenue off the table.

The council will have to weigh all of these considerations.  The first question ought to be whether there is a need for the hotel – and again, the hundreds of millions going into this part of town represent, for many, a game changer.

The second question is whether there is a way to get the hotel, make it viable, and mitigate at least some of the neighbors’ concerns.  We have seen at times the council ignore the concerns of neighbors, while at other times bowing to them.  Each council has been different but, given the revenue possibilities here, this is no small decision.

—David M. Greenwald reporting

About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

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123 Comments

  1. Tia Will

    when I stay in a hotel, if I find it noisy and difficult to sleep in, I’m going somewhere else next time.”

    That only means that you will have a luxury not available to the neighbors who will hardly be able to just stay somewhere else if the noise level is too high.  But thanks for my first Vanguard induced smile of the morning. It would have been funny comment if it were not the well being of a non moveable neighborhood that we are discussing.

    1. David Greenwald

      My point is that the hotel has the incentive to make the experience for its guest as good as possible and therefore quiet not only for the guests but the neighbors.

      1. Tia Will

        David

        I understood that. Was just having a little fun with you do to the obvious inapplicability of this comment to the neighbors ! As a frequent user of hotels, I am aware that they are not particularly quiet enterprises, regardless of the good intentions of their proprietors.

  2. Tia Will

     After all, if investors want to risk their money building a new hotel, let them.”

    This is easy for those of us not in close proximity to the planned hotel to say. We would not have to live with the uncertainty and the potentially even less attractive prospectives of rebranding in a less desirable way should this project fail. This point has been made by opponents of the project previously and I see it as having some merit. The investors have the upside of the profits if the hotel succeeds and of course, the downside economic risks of failure. The neighborhood has the downsides of either the success or failure of the project.

    1. South of Davis

      Tia wrote:

      > We would not have to live with the uncertainty and the potentially even

      > less attractive prospectives of rebranding in a less desirable way

      Would life for the neighbors be any different (or “less attractive”)  if the property was re-flagged as a Holiday Inn Express?

      > The neighborhood has the downsides of either the success or failure of the project.

      If you look at life where even one more car door closing is a “downside” for the neighborhood why stop at this hotel why not let neighbors force the owners of rental homes to leave them vacant until the neighbors “approve” who moves in since renting them brings “strangers” “noise” and “traffic” to the neighborhoods.

      P.S. David might want to do a story on AirBnB in Davis and also think about a story about how most (but not all) on the left who like taxes seem to hate big hotels (that almost always pay TOT taxes)  but support AirBnB (where renters rarely pay TOT taxes) and also hate chain stores (that almost always declare and pay tax on cash they get) but support small business (that often take the cash they get home every night and don’t mention it to the IRS)…

       

       

    2. Frankly

      Oh jesus Tia… really?   So now you are basing your opposition to fears that the hotel will fail financially.  You are arguing WAY above your pay-grade on this.  It is like me arguing over a decision for medical professionals to use a certain procedure because of the risk they might be wrong.

      Maybe some day we can sit down and I can go over how this stuff works in the real world.  How when financing a new business endeavor what is required before a bank or other investors will given up their capital in support of it.  There is TREMENDOUS vetting.  There are detailed financial projections and a demand that the operator has experience in the business.  There is a long list of business risks and their associated weight and then the plan has to mitigate those risks enough so that the bank and the investors agree that the project pencils out.  They have done all the market studies… all the demographic studies.  They know WAY, WAY, WAY more than you or anyone else not putting money into this project about the risks of financial failure.

      This point of yours is telling and troubling and hints at an ideological and political adoption of a highly inaccurate narrative that business is reckless and will just throw money at projects without considering the risks of failure.  The massive failure of business in 2008-2009 that we have yet to fully recover from mostly because of the terrible policies of our Democrats in political power, were caused by previous politicians in power.  The lack of sufficient risk assessment in our financial sector were entirely connected to subprime mortgage lending which was, and still is, a government-caused malady that stemmed from the unintended consequences of business-ignorant policy-makers.  CRA, Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae… the repeal of Glass Steagall.

      And here we are again with you, another business-ignorant posters, advocating for government policy and controls of business… because in your view they, business, cannot be trusted.

      What cannot be trusted is people that have no understanding, nor background, in business to be inserting themselves in business decisions.

      1. Tia Will

         So now you are basing your opposition to fears that the hotel will fail financially.”

        Wrong again Frankly. This was not “my argument”. As I have stated repeatedly, I am not opposing this hotel. I was addressing a concern that has been expressed by a number of the neighbors on a number of occasions. What is truly troubling to me here is the glib refusal to take any of the neighbors concerns seriously. I do not agree with all of the concerns, but I do empathize with the feelings of those who are sincerely expressing their honest concerns only to be called names and told to “mind their own business” although what project is in their immediate neighborhood is “none of their business” but somehow it is the business of those who are active proponents of virtually any project.

        1. Frankly

          It is my belief that people can work themself into opposition based on unfounded fears and made-up stories in thier head.  They envision “impacts” that are just not really impacts… just their difficulty accepting changes to their environment.   Changes that are otherwise reasonable.  Changes that are valuable to the community.  They live next to an empty lot within a city that rejects peripheral development… that has lots of people like you demanding that we be small and dense.  I can assess this.  I can do more than have empathy, I can put myself in their shoes and start to feel the same… but then think about it and control it and turn it into a rational rather than emotional process.  There are a lot of things my neighbors do that I might not like, but then there is being respectful and a good neighbor.  We purchased a lot a built a single-story house after meeting the owner of the lot next door.  He was a developer and was planning a single-story spec house.  A year after we moved in he starts putting in footings for a two story… sure enough the house he was building for clients was not only two-story but the only raised-subfloor home in the neighborhood.  Their windows would be 2 ft higher up than our home on a pad.  They would have a wall of second story windows about hanging over our fence.  At first I was real grumpy about it.  Thought it wasn’t fair.  Thought about legal action.  It just took me settling down and reframing it… that my developer neighbor and my soon to be new home buyer neighbors had a right to build the house that worked for them.  That Davis land is expensive and the lots are small and they would be filled and privacy would be difficult and maybe impossible. But we also knew we could plant trees… but a cap on the fence.  Here we are 26 years later.  I got over it.  Everything is fine.  The world did not end.  The “impacts” were really vapor.  That is the same going on with the neighbors of this hotel.  They are all worked up and emotional and I won’t at all give them support for their inability to do what I did and get the hell over it and be a good neighbor.

  3. Marina Kalugin

    given the majority make up of the council, they likely will

    but will they both be built, no way….not the one on Cowell    😉 or is it Chiles now?

  4. Biddlin

    Frankly, I hope that Tia and the NOEs get their way. Sacramento has rooms and we are building more. Uber, Lyft, Zipcar and taxicabs are available to deliver patrons to Davis and then return them to a welcoming host city for dining, entertainment and relaxation.

    1. Tia Will

      Biddlin

      Frankly, I hope that Tia and the NOEs get their way”

      Well, I certainly hope that you can explain to me what “my way” is, since I have taken no position at all on this project.

  5. Grok

    There was some debate in the comments as to whether that represents something workable – after all, underground parking adds millions to the cost and reduction in stories takes potentially millions in revenue off the table.

    It is important to note that the Palm Court Hotel in Downtown Davis is 2 stories with underground parking so one does not need to look very far to see a smaller hotel with underground parking that has worked out.

    1. Chamber Fan

      27 rooms built in 1992.  So instead of doing homework to find out whether your solution is in fact workable, you post something that likely is not comparable.

      1. Grok

        Interesting Chamber, yesterday you said

         

        Chamber Fan
        October 31, 2016 at 1:01 pm

        I don’t know what pencils out for the developer

        But today you claim you do know what pencils out? Tell me how 23 rooms can work with underground parking in Downtown Davis but 80 rooms on Cowell with enough underground parking that the hotel doesn’t have to put its parking behind the hotel adjacent to the green belt and closer to the homes does not?

        1. Chamber Fan

          Quit twisting my words if you want to continue to converse.  Penciling out has to do with costs and financing.  Right now you’re comparing apples and bananas without any data or information – just because they were able to finance a much smaller project a quarter of a century ago, doesn’t mean they can finance a larger one today.

        2. Grok

          I quoted you directly and I even linked to your quote. So now your saying the Cowell development partners can’t build a better project because they would not be able to finance it. The developers inability to get financing should not be a reason for the city to settle for a sub-par project.

          I am comparing an existing hotel in Davis to a proposed hotel in Davis. The Palm Court is a good example of a Davis hotel that has been financially successful and has underground parking.

        3. Chamber Fan

          My objection was: “But today you claim you do know what pencils out? ”  That’s not you quoting directly.

          ” So now your saying the Cowell development partners can’t build a better project because they would not be able to finance it.”

          Better project?  That’s subjective.  I never agreed that your proposal was a “better project.”  If you want to have an honest discussion, quit playing games.

        4. Mark West

          “If you want to have an honest discussion…” 

          The obvious problem is that he does not want to have an honest discussion. He wants to sway the public through the use of false statements, innuendo, personal attacks and general dishonesty.

        5. Grok

          Seems like you don’t want to, or can’t address my first post and now your making excuses.

          It is important to note that the Palm Court Hotel in Downtown Davis is 2 stories with underground parking so one does not need to look very far to see a smaller hotel with underground parking that has worked out.

          A smaller hotel in Downtown Davis that has underground parking that is successful certainly suggests that it can be done on Cowell.

        6. Chamber Fan

          “A smaller hotel in Downtown Davis that has underground parking that is successful certainly suggests that it can be done on Cowell.”

          No it doesn’t.  1992 was when this was built – 25 years ago almost.  Too many variables – costs, funding, redevelopment money, etc.  Do some legwork before you simply throw stuff out there that might be irrelevant.

        7. Grok

          A smaller hotel in Downtown Davis that has underground parking has been successful for 25 years certainly suggests that a new hotel can be built with underground parking.
          Commercial real estate interest rates are about half of what they where 25 years ago. Financing for a project like this should be much more favorable now.
          Chamber Fan’s suggest that redevelopment money was used for the earlier project is him just trying to duck the obvious evidence that a hotel can afford to be built with parking underground. He has no idea if that’s true. After a little research my preliminary finding is that it is not true.

        8. Grok

          Having no real counter point you are throwing out ideas like redevelopment money in the hopes that it will stick. having no evidence you repeatedly engage in personal attacks.

          The reality is there is an example of a smaller hotel in Davis that has Underground parking that shows this can work. The developer has never offered any evidence that they can’t do it.

        9. Chamber Fan

          I simply suggested that you’re flying blind on this as you don’t know the financing issues involved in the Palm Court and whether they are applicable to the Hyatt House.  I threw out some variables to consider.  you chose to (again) to misrepresent what I stated.  I don’t consider you an honest broker.

        10. Grok

          You can consider me however you want. You just have not been able to offer any evidence that a 3 story hotel with parking underneath is unfeasible.

          Ultimately it is up to the developers to decide if there is significant incentive for them to follow through with the project. They are the ones that took the huge risk that they might not be able to build their desired project when they bought a property that was not zoned for their intended use.

          What Real estate agent if any advised the developers that this property was an appropriate location for their hotel?

          1. Don Shor

            What Real estate agent if any advised the developers that this property was an appropriate location for their hotel?

            You’ve asked this question at least four times now. Why? I’m sure the development team did their diligence on the project, and weren’t misled by any real estate agent.

        11. Grok

          I honestly don’t know who sold the property to the developer, I assume Chamber Fan would know since he seems to be close to the developers. So who did sell them the land?

        12. Mark West

          “What Real estate agent if any advised the developers that this property was an appropriate location for their hotel?”

          Just one of the many questions you could have asked the developers had you been willing to engage at any time over the past several months. That is, of course, if you really wanted to know the answers…

        13. Grok

          The developers took a big risk buying property not zoned for the use they intended. I am curious why the developer would choose this location, a location the Marriott passed up. If Mark and ChamberFan don’t know who sold them the property, they don’t know. 

           

          1. Don Shor

            One of the developers is a commercial real estate broker. You know that. So I don’t see the point of your question.

        14. South of Davis

          Don wrote:

          > I don’t see the point of your question.

          I don’t see the point of any of the 20 posts Grok made on this thread.

          We know Grok does not like the hotel and I’m wondering why anyone feels the need to post 20-50 times a day telling us he does not like the hotel and/or telling us what the developers should build…

        15. hpierce

          Grok…not definitive as to recent transactions, but last I heard, it was Rita Seiber, et al.  Public Record or a preliminary title search (APN’s available on-line) will answer your question… are you willing to put money/effort where your mouth is?  I’m not, to answer what may be a bogus question… put up or…

          Are you one of the hoteliers?

          Why do you seek answers from posters, when you can research?

        16. Matt Williams

          Grok said . . . “So why the mystery around who sold the property? It really makes no sense.”

          There is no mystery at all Grok.  The Seiber family ownership has been part of the public dialogue since the extensive Housing Element Steering Committee (HESC) meetings in 2007-2008 . . . and actually well before that.  Mike Harrington and Eileen Samitz were both on the HESC, and both of them could have answered your question if you had asked them.

  6. Mark West

    “The neighbor article does suggest a potential compromise”

    Throwing out an economically unfeasible idea (three stories, underground parking) at the last second is not a compromise, it is a failed attempt to act like you are being conciliatory and no longer intransigent. Alan Pryor, Colin Walsh, and the few neighbors they represent had months worth of opportunities to engage with the developers to create a better project. They refused and chose to be obstructionists instead, spreading false arguments and making bogus claims. The 7000 words of fiction that Alan P. published yesterday was a sad display of desperation and selfishness.

    Davis has $10’s of millions in annual unfunded obligations. The Hyatt House will bring in roughly half a million every year to help fund those obligations for the benefit of the entire city. It is a good project (LEED Gold) brought to us by a strong group of local developers with a track record for creating high-quality projects. This should be an easy decision (following hours of bombast).

    1. Grok

      The Cowell project would be a good project in a different location. It is a problematic project in the proposed location.

      The neighbors and others have suggested putting the parking under the hotel and building a 3 story hotel instead of a 4 story hotel for months. both concepts were discussed by the planning commissioners. The neighbors are being quite reasonable and any lack of engagement on the subject stems from the developer. The  developer has shown no evidence that these ideas are unworkable and indeed there is a local example of a hotel that is even smaller that has underground parking and has been successful.

       

      1. Mark West

        There were neighbors who engaged with the developers, and their concerns have been addressed. There were other neighbors who refused to engage and set about on a campaign of obstruction instead. Those are the few that you and Alan P. represent, and the ones responsible for posting an idea on a public blog the day before the decision and claiming that it is an effort at compromise with the developers (instead of an obvious act of desperation). You never presented the idea to the developers before posting it, did you?

        The Planning Commission did ask about underground parking and the applicant responded that it was financially unfeasible with the size of the project. End of story.

        1. Grok

          The Planning Commission did ask about underground parking and the applicant responded that it was financially unfeasible with the size of the project. End of story.

          The developers presented no evidence that it is financially unfeasible and there is a real world example in Downtown that it can work. the developer has not even suggested publicly that they looked into what it would cost.

          At the end of the day though, the developer took a huge risk when they bought a bargain property based on the assumption that they could get it rezoned for a different purpose. If the developer is now unsatisfied with their profit margin from a project that would be acceptable on the lot they bought that is a risk they knowingly took.

        2. Mark West

          “The developers presented no evidence that it is financially unfeasible “

          They did not need to, but I’m sure they could have if so asked. You will notice that the commissioners did not challenge the assertion and dropped that line of questioning. Perhaps they understood the situation well enough to know that the statement was valid.

          “indeed there is a local example of a hotel that is even smaller that has underground parking and has been successful.”

          Repeatedly pointing out a project built decades before under completely different financial and environmental conditions and claiming it as an example ‘proving’ feasibility for a project today is not a good example of partaking in an honest discussion.

           

        3. Chamber Fan

          I simply don’t understand why people think they can add a multimillion expense (underground park) and then decrease revenue (by going to three stories) and still have it be viable.  How much margin are you expecting that they’ll clear on the current design?

        4. Grok

          It is interesting that your only argument against building parking under the hotel and only building it at 3 stories is that it is an unsubstantiated claim that it is not economically viable, even in the face of evidence that it might be.

          The developer assumed a great risk when they purchased land that was not zoned for their intended use, and now their surrogates are complaining that they can’t make enough money acting on the very reasonable proposal from the neighbors. The developers gamble doesn’t seem to be working out at this location and it would be far better for them to adapt by putting forward a more reasonable proposal or finding a new location.

        5. Chamber Fan

          If you recall my comment to you was objecting to your determination that such an arrangement was “a workable compromise” without evidence.  You’ve twisted and morphed by remarks to suit your whimsy.

          My preference would be more density not less hoping to generate more TOT not less.

        6. Mark West

          “now their surrogates are complaining that they can’t make enough money acting on the very reasonable proposal from the neighbors. “

          And once again you are mischaracterizing other people’s comments, yet another example of your approach to ‘honest discussion.’

          The question at hand is whether posting a proposal on a public blog (buried in a 7000-word treatise) the day before a decision (after weeks of refusing to engage with the developer) constitutes a ‘reasonable proposal.’  The simple answer is no.

          The fact that the ‘proposal’ is likely to be financially unfeasible is really beside the point.

        7. Grok

          Mr. West, as has previously been pointed out on here both the 3 story proposal and the underground parking were discussed at the planning commission among other places. this is not a new proposal. the developers have chosen not to engage or work for a acceptable proposal. In fact they have even removed mitigation offered at the last planning commission hearing from what is being offered at City Council.

        8. Grok

          Chamber Fan, you are mixing comments on this thread with comments on yesterdays story. As i posted yesterday

          Grok
          October 31, 2016 at 10:32 am

          The developer took a big risk buying cheap land that was not appropriately zoned for the project they wanted to build. The neighbors are offering a workable compromise. If the developers don’t think they will make enough money with a reasonable project on the current location, then they should consider acquiring rights to a more appropriate property for their project.

        9. Grok

          My preference would be more density not less hoping to generate more TOT not less. – Chamber Fan

          A different location for the hotel would certainly meet that goal.

          How did the developer choose this terrible location in the first place? Who sold them this property? What was promised to them?

           

        10. Mark West

          “were discussed at the planning commission”

          Presenting something in public comment is no different than posting on a blog. You, Alan P. and the few neighbors who follow your lead, have never discussed your ‘ideas’ with the developer because you all refused to engage. Your intent has been obstruction from the start.

        11. Grok

          Marks story changes. 20 minutes ago the ideas had never been presented before yesterday. Now he admits they were discussed at the planning commission. mark really doesn’t seem to know what was discussed when.

          Further, Mark wrongly attempts to place the burden on the neighbors. It is the developers that are bringing the project, it is the developers that are seeking approval not the neighbors. It is the developers that have the financial motivation to find a workable project, but they have cynically opted not to further engage the neighbors and instead hope for an all or nothing vote at Council.

        12. Bill Habicht

          Colin/Grok,

          The Hyatt team tried in earnest to engage the neighborhood.  To recap for those who are reading and are unfamiliar:

          July 16, 2015

          Held prior to submittal of project to the city so that we could incorporate feedback into the design plans
          Neighborhood meeting outside my house on Greene Ter
          Taped invitations to the doors of residents living directly on the greenbelt
          Included an invitation to meet with neighbors at a time/place convenient for them if they were unable to attend

          July 28, 2015

          Held prior to submittal of project to the city so that we could incorporate feedback into the design plans
          Neighborhood meeting at the park behind Davis Diamonds
          Taped invitations to the doors of residents living within 500 feet of the project site
          Included an invitation to meet with neighbors at a time/place convenient for them if they were unable to attend

          January 10, 2016

          Neighborhood meeting held inside Davis Diamonds (childcare provided)
          Sent invitations via mail to neighbors living within 500 feet of the project site
          Invitation to the entire Rosecreek neighborhood posted on Nextdoor.com
          Included an invitation to meet with neighbors at a time/place convenient for them if they were unable to attend

          Following the neighborhood meeting on January 10th, the Hyatt team published a website with all information about the project.  All neighbors in attendance at the neighborhood meeting were notified of the website as well as being posted on Nextdoor.com.  Included on the website is a form to “contact us, ask questions and share your insights and wisdom with us.”

          The Hyatt team has met with anyone and everyone who requested a chance to meet and share their views and ideas.  Unfortunately, all we can do is open up avenues for communication and dialogue.  We cannot force people to participate.

        13. Grok

          Notable omissions in the description of the public outreach:

          No doors where knocked  (as for example the Lincoln40 team did. In fact the Lincoln40 approach to community outreach is to be commended).

          Sending a notice through the mail is the standard legal procedure but the development team instead opted to tape letters to the door.

          Taping letters to the door provide an ineffective tool to bring people to the first meeting but it was used a second time. With again only one person in attendance.

          The third meeting notices were mailed, which proved more effective at notifying neighbors, but reports from neighbors are that their treatment at the meeting was hostile.

          A member of the development team posted on an online blog that the neighbors in general were racists.

          No further effort has been made to reach out to neighbors.

          Mitigation offered in the final Planning commission meeting is not included in the proposal before the council.

          There is no plan in the proposal before the city council for continued communication with the neighbors to deal with construction issues if the project moves forward as was specifically requested and promised at the planning commission.

           

        14. Bill Habicht

          Grok/Colin, I hope Mayor Davis’ comments during the council meeting last night are sufficient to put the claims about poor neighborhood engagement efforts to rest.

      2. hpierce

        Yes, and a project entitled, by right under the existing zoning may well come along, that the neighbors will scream even louder about!  If the current proposal doesn’t pan out, for whatever reason, I really don’t care.

        ‘Nature abhors a vacuum’… particularly in this political environment where expansion is curtailed, something is likely to be built in the next few years… or, perhaps not… the parcel was created ~ 20 years ago…

        Let it remain a vacant patch of weeds, volunteer trees, let the soil and weed seeds migrate over the greenbelt and neighborhood when the north winds blow, and when it is developed, under the current zoning, however long that takes, let the neighbors wistfully look back if the new proposal is greatly less to their liking.  Frankly (although I’m not), I don’t give a damn.

        Given possible uses under the current zoning, let the neighbors ‘reap the wind’.  Might LMAO.

    2. Alan Pryor

      …had months worth of opportunities to engage with the developers to create a better project. They refused.

      Mark West – Where do you get you information?…a parallel universe? Our group never refused to negotiate with the developers. We told the developers from the very beginning that the project was way too big and there was no chance we would support it. They said it was uneconomical to make it smaller. Why is that? Hyatt Place did very nicely when it was a only 75-room hotel. Why could Hyatt House not similarly thrive with such a smaller hotel that does not blow the doors off the zoning restrictions.

      Your method of engaging in public debate on this issue is a lot like the Donald’s ..If you are crooked, call your opponent a crook. If you are a sexual predator, call your opponent’s husband a pervert rapist. If you have been systematically destroying sensitive records in back offices to keep them from court discovery,  call out your opponent for missing emails. These are effective but immoral political tools used by losers.

      In this case, the developer has never once come back with an true alternate proposal but then uses his shills to wrongfully denigrate us for “refusing to meet and negotiate”…..SAD !!!

      1. Mark West

        Wow, Alan Pryor. You must really be desperate to call me a crook and sexual predator. Is no personal attack beneath you?

        The simple fact is that you do not represent the community, just your own tiresome self. I am fed up with the vitriol and fallacies that spew from your mouth and keyboard, and that of your colleague, Colin. Davis deserves a better level of discourse than what you two appear capable of.

        The Hyatt House is an excellent project and the City Council would be foolish to turn it down. We will see if they are interested in doing what is best for the entire City, or if they will instead choose to play your tired political games. I expect that we will learn a great deal about the four council members tonight, but we won’t learn anything new about you that the community does not already know.

        1. Alan Pryor

          “You must really be desperate to call me a crook and sexual predator. Is no personal attack beneath you?”

          My post in no way calls you either. Reread it. At worst I am inferring you are behaving as the developers shill. I WILL stand behind that statement.

          And quit drinking so much coffee. It apparently scrambles your thought processes.

        2. Mark West

          I can read just find Alan P., your intent was clear.

          I stand by my statements regarding your character and your approach to civic engagement. The community deserves better.

      2. Alan Pryor

        David Greenwald – “My general sense is that the hotel developers have gone a lot further in their desire to compromise than the neighbors have.  The neighbors have generally taken the view of opposition to any hotel”.

        Same question to you as to Mark West: Where do you get you information?…a parallel universe?

        The developers have never ever made any serious compromises in their plans. Their sole proposal to address neighbors concerns was to move the entire footprint by about 15 ft to the north. You consider that your “general sense” that they have “gone a lot further” than the neighbors in “their desire to compromise”.

      3. Frankly

        Alan Pryor…. You should stick to environmental issues where you actually know something.  In fact, it is activists like you that have driven up the costs of projects like this one so that a 75-room hotel is no longer financially feasible.

        And correct me if I am wrong here but UCD owns the land that the Hyatt Place is built on.  So the cost of land was not a factor in the total cost of the project.

        So here you also contribute to the problem with your opposition to every development and demands that we surround the city in a farmland moat… thus driving up the cost of land that can be developed and requiring greater density to enable it to pencil out.

        You keep shooting yourself in the foot and then blame others while you reload and shoot the other foot.

        By the way though, good job on the fluoride opposition.  Maybe someday you will get to that other side of the broken clock.

        1. Grok

          Your post is about 805% character attack. I am actually doing you a favor pointing it out because you would be more effective if you stopped ineffectively insulting people.

        2. Chamber Fan

          Grok is right.

          “Alan Pryor…. You should stick to environmental issues where you actually know something.  In fact, it is activists like you that have driven up the costs of projects like this one so that a 75-room hotel is no longer financially feasible.”

          You make a point that 75 room hotel is not financially feasible, but embed it within two attacks (stick to environmental issues that you actually know about and activists like you).

          “And correct me if I am wrong here but UCD owns the land that the Hyatt Place is built on.  So the cost of land was not a factor in the total cost of the project.”
          Factual point.
          “So here you also contribute to the problem with your opposition to every development and demands that we surround the city in a farmland moat… thus driving up the cost of land that can be developed and requiring greater density to enable it to pencil out.”
          Personal and factually inaccurate.  Alan Pryor hasn’t opposed every development.
          “You keep shooting yourself in the foot and then blame others while you reload and shoot the other foot.”
          Purely personal.
          “By the way though, good job on the fluoride opposition.  Maybe someday you will get to that other side of the broken clock.”
          Sacrasm and off topic.
          So in that long post the only factual point you have made is that Alan’s environmentalism has driven up the cost of development – a subjective point at best but one surrounded by personal attacks, sacrasm, and inaccuracies.

          1. Don Shor

            the only factual point you have made is that Alan’s environmentalism has driven up the cost of development

            I’ve long been curious what the added costs are of the environmental enhancements that are required for projects in Davis. Perhaps Alan could address that. How much more does it cost to build a Gold LEED building vs. a Silver LEED building, and are we really getting our money’s worth if we require that? I realize every project is different, but it could be useful to know at least the general outlines. Most folks like me actually have no idea what LEED grades are.

        3. Frankly

          Mr. Pryor opened him self up like a can of tuna with his insulting and personal attacks at Mark West.  Just adding some return color.

          Not surprising that the two of you ignore the substance of my post and ignore the color in Mr. Pryor’s post.  Bias is a difficult thing to overcome, no?

        4. Chamber Fan

          LEED is a huge cost especially since it involves checking boxes rather than just meeting standards.  I’m more skeptical about other added costs of environmentalism.  The developers I have talked to have told me construction costs are flat across communities, the biggest costs added to Davis are land costs and process costs.

        5. Frankly

          “Alan Pryor…. You should stick to environmental issues where you actually know something.  In fact, it is activists like you that have driven up the costs of projects like this one so that a 75-room hotel is no longer financially feasible.”

          Absolutely true.  Title-24 and other code increases based on the work of environmental activists has significantly increased the cost of construction over the last 40 years… but has accelerated over the last 10.   If he knew something about this he would have acknowledged it.

          You make a point that 75 room hotel is not financially feasible, but embed it within two attacks (stick to environmental issues that you actually know about and activists like you).

          Again, a fact with color.   To argue for a smaller project and then make the basic claim without any evidence to back it up that the developer is lying when responding that it is financial infeasible put Mr. Prior in an awkward position given his general approach of being a very strong knowledgeable and fact-based opponent of certain change he dislikes.  He was fantastic on the fluoride debate… he is out of his league in this topic.

          “And correct me if I am wrong here but UCD owns the land that the Hyatt Place is built on.  So the cost of land was not a factor in the total cost of the project.”
          Factual point.

          Just adding them all up.

          “So here you also contribute to the problem with your opposition to every development and demands that we surround the city in a farmland moat… thus driving up the cost of land that can be developed and requiring greater density to enable it to pencil out.”
          Personal and factually inaccurate.  Alan Pryor hasn’t opposed every development.

          My bad.  Should have used the phrase “most new development projects” instead of every.  He was against Measure A… a more than reasonable infill project.  I tend to look at the people that voted against Measure A as NOE and NIMBY people because it was such a good project for the city.  But the general point is still valid despite that mistake… those that reject peripheral development, support the current urban boundary and reject significant infill are responsible for driving up the cost of land that then results in the buildings to be taller and larger.  Do you disagree?

          “You keep shooting yourself in the foot and then blame others while you reload and shoot the other foot.”   Purely personal

          Wow.  You apparently like reading dry and clinical text and are a bit hypersensitive about certain words and phrases.  This a “personal attack”.   That is a stretch.

          “By the way though, good job on the fluoride opposition.  Maybe someday you will get to that other side of the broken clock.”
          Sacrasm and off topic.

          Nope.  Not at all.  It get to the point that Mr. Pryor should either come to the table with data to support his claim that the developer is lying and that Mark West is a shill for the developers… or stick with arguing about toxic clouds surrounding the project…

        6. Michael Harrington

          I miss West and Dear Neighbor Frankly going after me like this …. Alan, I’m jealous! Please don’t take away my job of kicking these overly sensitive gentlemen !

        7. Frankly

          Title 24 costs: http://hughesmarino.com/san-diego/blog/2015/03/25/buyer-beware-title-24-code-requirements-more-costly-than-previously-thought/

          I am living the nightmare.  Just try to lease a commercial building these days and see what the code does.   After 1/1/2017 it jumps to an even higher bar.

          But hey, according to some politicians that I won’t name over moderator sensitivity to his/her legacy and potential coronation, Global Warming is the most important policy issue facing this country.

  7. Ron

    Mark: “The Planning Commission did ask about underground parking and the applicant responded that it was financially unfeasible with the size of the project. End of story.”

    Just to clarify, if a developer tells a commission that it can’t be done, everyone should automatically accept this as fact? (Well, that should “simplify” things, at least.)

    1. Mark West

      “if a developer tells a commission that it can’t be done, everyone should automatically accept this as fact?”

      Ron – A reasonable question, to which my answer is no, you should not just accept it. You should, however, understand that no one knows the financials for a project better than the developer, and if they are unwilling to pay for some feature that you are demanding, then they probably have the data to support their position.  If the PC had reason not to believe the applicant, they could have asked for supporting data, yet they clearly decided that it was not necessary.

       

      1. Tia Will

        Mark

        A reasonable question, to which my answer is no, you should not just accept it. You should, however, understand that no one knows the financials for a project better than the developer, and if they are unwilling to pay for some feature that you are demanding, then they probably have the data to support their position.”

        Here I believe is the crux of the issue. I am sure that you are correct that the developer does have the data. One problem is that they are claiming to want the cooperation of the neighbors, but are not willing to share information that might enable the neighbors to understand the developers point of view rather than making assumptions.

        Consider the following analogy. A husband and wife have made choices which have left them in a financial bind. They are looking for ways to increase revenue. The wife finds work which she states will bring in significantly more money and thus she states benefit the whole family. However, she tells her husband, in order for her to succeed in this job, they must fundamentally change their marital relationship ( he will have to stay home with the kids for example giving up his private time for her advancement). She has chosen to use her own money to buy a new wardrobe and other expensive items necessary for the job. Now this would be reasonable if she were willing to discuss the numbers with her husband prior to making these investments. Unfortunately she has not chosen to share these numbers. She hasn’t told him how much “investment” she has made, what her salary will be, or how secure the position is. She just expects him to trust her that nothing else “pencils out”. Reasonable ?  Definitely if her anticipation is that he will just go along. Not so much so if she truly has any desire to work with him.

        Mark and Frankly are correct when they state that I do not understand the intricacies and costs of real estate development. I am sure this is true of others as well. Then the reasonable path from my point of view would be to educate us. Actually show us the numbers and why it does not “pencil out” with a more modest proposal rather than simply deriding us for “not knowing”. This kind of transparency would definitely promote trust and in my view probably gain more support and less opposition. However, I have been told repetitively that this is “none of my business”. With this I disagree. Major proposals requiring exemptions and changes to current zoning and guidelines are the business of all who care about the direction that development takes in our city not just those who have a direct financial interest in any given project.

        1. South of Davis

          Tia wrote:

          > Consider the following analogy. A husband and wife have made

          > choices which have left them in a financial bind. 

          I think a better analogy is that someone with a home behind mine (on the other side of the greenbelt and bike path) tells me that he can’t afford to pay to add underground parking (something that is unbelievably expensive) when they remodel their home and I demand his last three years tax returns to “prove” they can’t afford it…

        2. Mark West

          “One problem is that they are claiming to want the cooperation of the neighbors, but are not willing to share information that might enable the neighbors to understand the developers point of view rather than making assumptions.”[emphasis added]

          You have it wrong. The information was not withheld, it was never asked for. The PC asked about underground parking, the applicant responded that it was too expensive, the PC moved on, without asking for further information. It is unreasonable to fault a developer for not answering a question that was never asked. The developers of the Hyatt House have a website that anyone might have used to post that question if they wanted to know the answer. Did you do so? Did Alan P.? Colin Walsh? No, none of you did.

          I know for a fact that the answer was readily available because I heard the question asked of and be answered by the applicant last night (>$30,000 per underground parking spot or > $3 million added to the project). The information was not being withheld.

          “Then the reasonable path from my point of view would be to educate us.”

          We are no longer school children. It is no one’s responsibility to educate us, it is our responsibility to further our own education. If you don’t understand a topic, ask questions and learn. If you want to better understand a proposed project, engage with the developers and ask your questions. When one ignores, or worse, actively refuses their opportunities for engagement and education, they have no one to blame but themselves for their lack of understanding. Remember the adage, ‘you can lead a horse to water…’

          I have no special training or experience in development, I just pay attention to what I hear or read in an effort to expand my understanding. I did not ‘know’ the answers to the questions being asked and the claims being made about zoning in the neighborhoods (both in Rosecreek and Downtown) so I read the documents. The answers were readily available, just a few clicks away on the City’s website. When I found something I didn’t understand, I walked into the City offices and asked. Fifteen minutes later I walked out with a preliminary answer, that was confirmed a few days later by phone call once the Planner had completed his investigation. The information is there if you are willing to look for it and make the effort to pay attention.

          You specifically called out Jeff and me to educate you. Trust me, we have tried, but you appear to be one stubborn learner. In order to learn new ideas we often have to let go of our previous convictions. For example (in the absurd), you cannot accept that the world is round as long as you hold to a conviction that because it looks flat from where you are standing, it must be so (or that you want it to be so). There have been many opportunities for you to let go of your past convictions (and your wants) and better understand topics, but you frequently ignore them. When a lesson has to be repeated multiple times because the student refuses to learn, there is a distinct lack of interest in attempting to teach it again. We expect the teachers of our children to try a new approach when this happens but as adults the responsibility for learning shifts entirely to the student. If you didn’t learn it the first time (tenth time?), it is your responsiblity to try again, not mine.

          To take this to the extreme, we had an example in this comment strand where someone repeatedly asked trivial questions, and then proclaiming that the information was being withheld when no one answered them. The questioner did not want to know the answer, he just wanted an excuse to bash others for not bending to his will and ‘spoon feed’ him. He wasn’t just being a bad student who didn’t want to learn, he was acting the class jerk who’s demands for attention prevent everyone one else from learning.

           

        3. Grok

          Mark,

          Your nasty tone is really uncalled for.

          Mark points out  “the PC asked about underground parking, the applicant responded that it was too expensive, the PC moved on, without asking for further information” what you leave out is that the PC moved on to vote against the project

           

        4. Chamber Fan

          The PC voted not to move the project forward however two of the commissioners said that they felt that the project could be approved with some alterations.

  8. Ron

    By the way, I’d suggest that everyone just calm down, before it gets too personal (and unproductive).  I’d suggest that the monitor be aware of the direction that this is taking, as well.

    1. hpierce

      Good, then you can end the snottiness of,

      “Just to clarify, if a developer tells a commission that it can’t be done, everyone should automatically accept this as fact? (Well, that should “simplify” things, at least”.)

      Ever heard of the term “passive-aggressive”?  You post that 6 minutes before you posted,

      By the way, I’d suggest that everyone just calm down, before it gets too personal (and unproductive).  I’d suggest that the monitor be aware of the direction that this is taking, as well.

      Mirror time… no evidence of contrition/responsibility for you own words…
      I say this irrespective of the issue(s) at hand… am talking about what rules do you wish to play by in discourse?

      1. Ron

        Don:

        I’ll take responsibility for that sarcastic statement, although I don’t think it was at the same level of some more personal statements that were made, above (which thankfully don’t involve me).  Nevertheless, I apologize.

        In case anyone cares what I think, I have mixed thoughts regarding the Hyatt proposal. (However, I’m pretty sure that I’d be quite concerned, if I was a neighbor of that proposed development.)

        As someone once said, no neighborhood should get “thrown under the bus”.

        Seems like some of the neighbors have a proposed solution (reduce number of stories, include underground parking).

        Glad to see your follow-up 10:55 a.m. comment, below.

        1. hpierce

          Moderator… cut me some slack here, as I think it pertains to both the subject and the Vanguard’s policies…

          Ron (and all)… it isn’t about making comments that might offend/upset/irritate… we can’t read minds… it is deliberately choosing to do so… I am not innocent of that, at times, and sometimes “my buttons are pushed”… and my wiring contributes to me ‘pushing back’… maybe I can be more ‘adult’ moving forward…

          Yet, I will not bend as to “facts” vs. BS opinions (general comment). Will try not to use inflammatory adjective/adverbs in doing so…

        2. Ron

          hpierce:  “Ron (and all)… it isn’t about making comments that might offend/upset/irritate… we can’t read minds… it is deliberately choosing to do so…”

          You are right about this.  Some (unfortunately, only a few) on the Vanguard seem to be able to make a point without resorting to making such comments.

          It is sometimes difficult to resist responding “in kind”, but it’s best to avoid it.  (In fact, it’s probably more effective to avoid it, in the long run.)

           

      1. hpierce

        Ditto… rules/standards should apply across the board… often, they appear not to be… self-regulation is the correct remedy… that would lead to less need for “moderation”… will cross my fingers for that…

        1. Biddlin

          ” rules/standards should apply across the board”

          Maybe David and Don could just list those chosen for exemption or post their comments in a special font. It would save a great deal of frustration if we knew who’s posts were sacrosanct.

    1. Odin

      Ad hominem attacks are the reason many of us no longer post on the DV.  Sure are a lot of people on here who think they know so much more than others and disqualify other’s arguments because they deem those people unworthy to post.  Unfortunately it reflects what is happening all over this country and is sad to see it infects Davis too, but then again I’m naive for thinking it wasn’t so.  Oh, and did I mention trolls?  We have some on here too just waiting for somewhere to place their anger.

      1. quielo

        I’m skeptical whether it is even possible to have a “Ad hominem” attack against an anonymous poster.  How can you have a “personal” attack against an avatar?

        “We have some on here too just waiting for somewhere to place their anger.” Who specifically are you referring to?

        1. Marina Kalugin

          the sockpuppets and others posts can stand and do, that is why they are just as real personaes as a “trust”…  not that I agree with trusts either…I mean that a trust is the same as a person ….really?

  9. Marina Kalugin

    slack?, now the folks who were jumping all over me so many a time on the Chancellor threads, and the No on A and so much other nonsense are asking for slack…

    there should be at least a two day time out for those older folks and by older I don’t mean us senior citizens….I mean the ones who waste time here 24/7….

  10. Marina Kalugin

    dear Ron, those who get sick of the mentality here leave…they still read though  🙂

    and it is for the broad audience that may or may not be able to see something before it is scrubbed away that some activists types may or may not choose to hijack a thread.

    heck sometimes it is not even intentional as one may or may not be able to recall wtf thread they are on..when one has many screens and programs open at one time…right?

    who knows I doubt that most on here have 3 monitors, and a lap top and cell phone going at once…and two land lines in the office either…

     

  11. Marina Kalugin

    nothing is unfeasible, mr developer ….it is only what quality of life the citizens demand…

    it is also if we have pansies on the council or not..

    Not that I am saying anyone on this council is a pansy..

    But, when we had attorneys and a majority of PhDs on the council, the likes of some of these same developers were having to abide by some rules..

    oh well, waste your damn money and see who runs out first…ha ha

  12. Frankly

    Are we taking bets with odds?  What will the CC do?  How will they vote?

    This reminds me of raising my kids that had to learn they were not the center of the universe and that they don’t always get every thing they want.

    But so far the city and the CC seem prone to giving the NIMBY and NOE kids everything they want.  And so the lesson is that tantrums seem to work.  Is that the message our city leaders want to keep telegraphing.

    I have an idea.  I think we need a wall of fame and shame where we rate the performance of all past CC members relative to what consequences their votes have caused.  At this point I see the shame wall needing to be expanded.   Maybe tonight we begin to start filling the fame wall.

        1. Matt Williams

          Neither project was approved.  Two to three weeks of fine tuning, including dialogue by the Hyatt House team with the neighbors and dialogue by the Residence Inn team with independent sustainability experts.

  13. Marina Kalugin

    heck…I would be up for that ..with my super secret powers of knowing the folks and how they work….I would be up for it….who wants to start it?

    it will have to be done by paypal though as my credit card keeps getting denied here at the moment…

  14. Marina Kalugin

    My crystal ball, which rarely serves me wrong, predicts that the Marriott gets approved and goes forward…and regardless of whether the cc approves the Hyatt or not, it will never be built in that location..

    I also predicted the demise of the Nishi/A crapola…and many other projects that were not needed…like the lovely and unnecessary Corbett deal on the intersection of Pole Line and Covell.

    The jury is still out on the Embassy suites…perhaps they will pack up and leave?   who knows…

  15. Marina Kalugin

    hey, don’t bash Brett…he is the only one with sense and who can stand up to the powers that be in this town…you know….the ones with the bucks who are itching to make more bucks and faster… on the backs of the current residents….

  16. Tia Will

    Hi Marina

    the ones with the bucks who are itching to make more bucks and faster… on the backs of the current residents….”

    I hope that you don’t mind if I borrow your comment to underscore the point of my post of earlier this morning. This kind of assumption is inevitable when developers are not willing to share their actual financial goals and constraints with those whom they expect to make concessions in order to allow a project to proceed. How can anyone know whether their “penciling out” estimates are accurate, or merely reflective of avarice when they will not share them honestly ?  This leads people who are so inclined to make the worst possible assessment of their motives. I know that this is how business has traditionally been conducted. My question is, is this really the best that we can do ? Could we not at least consider a collaborative rather than a perpetually adversarial model ?

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