Master Developer

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The CART MDRT reviewed the six applications the city received in response to its request for a Master Developer. We chose four for personal interviews. After serious consideration, we chose Wallace Bajjali, based in Sugar Land, Texas to recommend to the City Council as our choice for Master Developer.
Wallace Bajjali comes with the following strong qualifications:
• An understanding of public-private partnerships as a result of the public service of Dave Wallace as Mayor of Sugar Land and Joe Esch as a city economic developer.
• Successful experience as a Master Developer in Waco, Texas and as the choice for downtown redevelopment in Amarillo, Texas.
• Their willingness to be an at-risk developer with compensation based on their performance and production.
• A strong local partner in Crossland Construction Company as their construction manager.
• A significant investment in understanding the Joplin-Duquesne communities already in place from their visits and studies.

The MDRT divided into a reference team and a site review team. The reference team spoke with mayors, city councilmen, city managers and economic development specialists. We heard that Wallace Bajjali were good communicators and excellent listeners. Their team was able to provide vision and direction. In any business situation relationships and investments sometimes work out and sometimes they do not. The overwhelming majority of those relationships and investments researched by our committee involving Wallace-Bajjali were successful; however we did run into a few instances that warranted further investigation. In these instances, our investigation revealed that when they began a project, they stayed the course and delivered, even when other partners encountered difficulties. Wallace Bajjali stood behind their obligations. Members of the reference team also reviewed financials of Wallace Bajjali and were satisfied with the results.
The site review team visited Waco, Texas to see some completed Wallace Bajjali projects. Their student housing unit built to house Baylor students was well-constructed and well-maintained. Many of us wished we were back in college again. Their River Square Center was a great combination of restaurant-retail-office. It was well appointed and fully occupied.

The MDRT eagerly anticipates our next steps – negotiating a contract and developing a plan.
(March 27, 2012)