Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Downtown Towers

Let us hope that this project, a truly beautiful and visionary one, soon is reborn and begins rising.

Towers project looks shakier
Developer misses buyout deadline for his 53-story dream.
By Mary Lynne Vellinga - Bee Staff Writer
Published 12:00 am PDT Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Downtown high-rise developer John Saca missed Friday's deadline to buy out his estranged partner, the California Public Employees' Retirement System -- leaving the fate of his twin condominium towers more precarious than ever.

"Things did not turn out the way we were hoping," Saca said. "We had under 60 days to raise over $60 million for a project that was really underwater. ... We just ran out of time."

The giant state pension fund now has a week or two to decide whether it wants to take over the stalled, debt-ridden project at the entrance to Capitol Mall and move forward without Saca, CalPERS confirmed Tuesday. The pension fund invested about $25 million with Saca before cutting him off in late 2006, citing cost overruns.

CalPERS has brought in the CIM Group, a Los Angeles-based developer, to decide whether it would make financial sense to pursue a significantly scaled-down version of Saca's 53-story condominium and hotel towers. CIM's idea for the site also would include some office space, said CalPERS spokeswoman Pat Macht.