Worst Development Project Overview Ever

If you were to propose a multi-million dollar, 46-acre development project, which included a new mass transit system and hydrogen energy plant, you probably wouldn’t use an image from Sim City for illustration purposes in your master plan, would you?

That’s exactly what Duane Faust, of ESNA Corporate Realty, did however, according to MLive.com.  The would-be developer used a Sim City image to illustrate a planned hydrogen energy plant in his 27-page proposal (PDF), which is part of a sweeping redevelopment plan for Grand Rapids, Michigan.

MLive.com also notes that Faust’s plan lifted an image used to illustrate a proposed hydrogen-powered subway system from hydrail.org, a “program designed to promote hydrogen-powered rail systems created by Appalachian State University.”

City Planning Director Suzanne Schulz called the project “a long shot,” adding, “It could be anything from an April Fool’s joke to testing the waters to see if it’s a legitimate project.”

Mayor George Heartwell labeled the proposed subway system “absurd.”

Members of the UrbanPlanet community have been picking the project apart, even going so far as to compare Faust with Simpsons character Lyle Lanly, who duped Springfield residents into paying for their own monorail system.

It was also reported that, "Faust could not be reached for comment. Telephone numbers connected to him and his firms in Atlanta and California have been disconnected."

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  1. 0
    ScotlandTom says:

    Heh… seems I should’ve read the actual PDF before posting as many of the things I mentioned (art/cultural centers and facilities for film) are included in the plan.

    Still it’s kind of silly to see a plan like this and find an image from SC4 on the front page.

  2. 0
    ScotlandTom says:

    As a native to Grand Rapids I can say this guy has been around before and has generated a lot of talk about some giant secretive project that never materialized.  Now, Grand Rapids NEEDS some revitalization, but one of the worst uses of anyone’s money would be to build a hydrogen energy plant or a hydrogen powered subway.  We simply do not have the traffic volumes to necessitate anything close to a subway.

    If you want to talk transportation then build a commuter rail system (or mag-lev or something) connecting Grand Rapids, Holland and Muskegon.  Any other money spent on development around here ought to focus on transforming the dilapidated downtown areas into parks or art/cultural centers.  Even better, let’s develop the burgeoning film industry here and build some production facilities like sound stages or special effects warehouses.

    Grand Rapids is not a shoddy town, but it does have it’s ugly areas.  It’s really a city that just needs some love, but I don’t think this Duane guy really understands what’s best for the area.

  3. 0
    nefermore says:

    I think its a really cool idea.   Hell we sure do need some new ideas.   As for that forum hub Urban Planet, I glanced them over and didnt find a wealth of intelligent remarks.   Kind of like my own cities local news comments sections.   Regardless of what he borrowd the image from its not unheard of for future realities to have reference in past fiction. 

  4. 0
    Thad says:

    The main problem is probably that it’s unsourced and unexplained.  He probably just intended it as clip art, but that’s not clear in the context of the document.

  5. 0
    Bloodharp says:

    (quote) "Simpsons character Lyle Lanly, who duped Springfield residents into paying for their own monorail system" (end quote). I thought Lanly built a faulty and severly dangerous monorail system, pocketing most of the funds that were intended for it. Anywho…

    Who cares where the images came from? Assuming he isnt just messing with the people (disconnected phones? really?), it may be something to look at. Hydrogen powerplant… hmm. New jobs? We need it up here. And no more cold, but take what you can get…


    In war, truth is the first casualty.

  6. 0
    chadachada321 says:

    Well I live in Michigan, so this story really caught my interest…until I realized that this Faust guy seems like a really giant troll, lol.

    -Optimum est pati quod emendare non possis-It is best to endure what you cannot change-

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