I am standing in the open grounds where once stood Southwyck Mall. It is an embarrassing reality to have such prime real estate lie dormant and to watch it slowly disintegrate into wasteland.
So, it's understandable that Toledo Mayor Mike Bell is eager to do something with this property. But that eagerness, even as earnest as it surely is, does not excuse the messy aftermath to last Thursday's press conference.
The details aside, the crux of the matter is the Mayor's development team made a decision to support a developer whose qualifications and background are suspect. It is painfully obvious that the necessary due diligence did not happen. It was a huge mistake that is even more glaring in that it was so easily prevented.
Faced with the onslaught of deserved negative publicity, the Mayor expressed surprise and quickly withdrew his support of the disreputable plan. He offered up a fall guy from his administration. The lesson learned should be that incompetence and haste, coupled with a lack of due diligence, does not lead to good decisions.
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