As I watch more of the "process" for this baseball stadium, I keep asking myself if this is really the spark that is going to get Hartford moving ahead?
As much as I would hope that it could be, I think it has only gone to reinforce the image that Hartford is a City of fools, run by fools. Nothing about this project has gone smooth or been presented well. The busway was rolled out smoother than this single, much simpler project . Hartford's Economic Development people were born too late, they probably would have had great futures launching the Edsel.
I think this project was doomed from the start due to the secrecy and lack of information supplied to the populace. The second launch after the original outcry wasn't much better, still no facts, very little financial detail. Just more of the "trust me" from a Mayor whose trustworthy ratings aren't riding too high right about now.
I just keep wondering what will really spark economic development in Hartford. I don't believe it is stealing a baseball team from one of our neighboring suburb. I really do think that a properly run City Government would draw more attention from developers and business people than any baseball stadium.Wouldn't it be great to hear business leaders saying "we want to be in Hartford, it is so well managed , and it is the place for us to be"
Wouldn't it be nice to hear a developer announce that they are coming to Hartford because they believe in the potential and think Hartford is moving in the right direction. They see the fiscal responsibility at City Hall and want to be part of the growth. Not because a broke City is willing to throw $65million dollars at the feet of greedy developers to buy their love for the City ( I know the $65 million figure has been changed, but can anyone supply real numbers for the project)
I look at a smaller town like Middletown, that is vibrant and seems to have no problem with Economic Development. Their Main Street is busy and I don't think we hear too much of the bickering and nonsense coming out of Hartford coming from Middletown.
These things make a difference. What developer wants to take a risk on a City like Hartford where more energy is put into corrupt activity like scheming to hand pick an Assistant Fire Chief, who just happens to be sleeping with a City Official. And a Mayor that is willing to put his New Year's Eve Dinner and his caviar on his City Credit Card probably won't impress a hardworking developer that understands the meaning of hard work and proper management to get ahead.
I think if Hartford got its act together and began using basic management skills, that would impress more for the potential of actual Economic Development than gambling on a baseball stadium whose future and potential is sketchy at best. If you really want to gamble , head to Ledyard , not Hartford, our track record isn't the best.