Strata-spheric rent: The rush is on for taxpayer- subsidized luxury office space

Comment by Nathan Duvall: The article fails to note that the proposed project requires the city to guarantee the debt. If the finances don't work for any reason Taxpayers are on the hook, as they already are for the adjacent Power and Light entertainment district, where the taxpayer bailout for Cordish exceeds $12m each year.

The $94 million Strata office tower would bring the first new construction high-rise office tower to Downtown since 2006. Proponents say it also would fill two holes in the market: one for speculative office space and another for a top amenity, high-rise office tower.

While other downtown projects like Somera Road's Lightwell are raising rates by renovating older, outdated buildings into Class A space, the Strata project could help propel downtown leasing rates, especially at a time when there is limited available office space.

"I just don't know if we know that we're not going to get into a recession in a couple years and it's going to be empty," Councilwoman Heather Hall said during last week's meeting.

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