Mountain View mayor asks hotel developer for a 'dollar figure' in advance of building
At a city council meeting Tuesday, Mountain View Mayor John McAlister asked local hotel developer Shashi Group how much the group would be willing to add in "community benefits" to advance their project.
"Is there a dollar figure? Say, $1.5 million, to move your project along tonight?" McAlister asked the developers.The Shashi group did not open up their wallets to McAlister or the city of Mountain View, and their five-story hotel project in the coveted North Bayshore neighborhood was ultimately sent back to city staff to evaluate.
Stunning: Mayor McAlister just asked Shashi Group if there was "a dollar figure" they would be willing to offer to move project along.- Nate DonatoWeinstein (@SVBizNate) May 6, 2015
Very awkward moment in room after Mayor asks hotel developer about community benefit in very direct way.- Nate DonatoWeinstein (@SVBizNate) May 6, 2015
While other applicants like LinkedIn promised a movie theater and pledged money to re-facilitate the city's library remodel, Shashi Group didn't incorporate such flashy benefits into their proposal. Council members debated the hotel's availability of meeting space as an actual enhancement to the community and whether two electric vehicle chargers was enough to constitute a benefit.
Even though the mayor was fishing for funds, other council members were pushing really hard for other tangible benefits like an art installment - although you can bet its price tag will probably be below the $1.5 million Shashi Group refused to cough up for council Tuesday.