Empowering Fools

The Saint ReportPlanning and Zoning, Politicians and Planning, Property Development, Saint News, Strategic Communications, Thought Leadership

Dealing with the Idiotic, Irrational and Incomprehensible By Patrick Fox, President & CEO The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits. – Albert Einstein Anyone advocating for a controversial initiative today must learn to deal with the fear of change, cynicism and NIMBYism that now permeates the public discourse. True professionals understand and expect vocal and engaged … Read More

Unknowns in Land Use Politics

The Saint ReportSaint News, Thought Leadership

Political due diligence in commercial real estate By Patrick Fox, CEO Saint Consulting fox@tscg.biz Any company making decisions about a commercial real estate deal does a lot of due diligence. They study demographics, market share, infrastructure, and deal financials among other things. What too many still fail to do is a political due diligence. All land use decisions are political … Read More

Saint University Executive Seminars

The Saint ReportNIMBY, Planning and Zoning, Retail, Saint Consulting Links, saintblog, Thought Leadership

Keeping corporate teams on the cutting edge of land use politics Saint University Executive Seminars are customized programs for corporate teams- keeping them on the cutting edge of land use politics. Our programs have been featured at The World Bank, MIT Center for Real Estate, Vanderbilt University, Urban Land Institute, International Conference of Shopping Centers, ADIT Brasil, the National Sand, … Read More

Anti-Competitive Organizing- Is That Legal?

The Saint ReportPoliticians and Planning, Thought Leadership

By Patrick Fox, President and CEO Petitioning government is a protected activity even when opposition to a development project is supported by anonymous third parties with anti- competitive motives. The courts have sanctioned the right to organize community opposition that urges government officials and agencies to deny land use permits to applicants, even when the underlying motive of the opposition … Read More

“But it’s a good project!”- The Losers Lament

The Saint ReportNIMBY, Thought Leadership

By Patrick Fox, President & CEO Whether you call them NIMBYs, BANANAs, CAVE* people or simply scared and uninformed, they are organizing to stop your project and, often, they are winning. Regardless of how good you think your project is and how hard you may have worked to address community needs they are still there screaming bloody murder at the public … Read More

Broken Planning: How Opponents Hijacked the Planning Process

The Saint ReportNIMBY, Planning and Zoning, Press Release, Referendum/initiative, saintblog, Thought Leadership

The OP-ED below ran in Planetizen on March 18, 2015. Planetizen.com  By Patrick Fox, President, The Saint Consulting Group Former U.S. Speaker of the House Tip O’Neill famously said that “All politics is local.” It can also be said that “All land use is political.” And the politics of land use has turned against development. Rather than generating a healthy debate … Read More

Strategic Communications: The Illusion of Cause

The Saint Reportsaintblog, Thought Leadership

Owen Eagan, Vice President and Senior Consultant What would you do if you were developing a new project for an electric utility company and were faced with angry constituents at a public hearing who were concerned about exposure to EMFs, or electric and magnetic fields? Would you simply dismiss their concerns by saying that the American Medical Association and others … Read More

Walmart Support Grows Nationally

The Saint ReportNIMBY, Planning and Zoning, Saint Index, saintblog, Thought Leadership, Wal-Mart and Big Box

By Patrick Fox, President, The Saint Consulting Group Opposition now at just 50% When the Saint Index was first conducted in 2006 and Americans were asked how they would feel if a Walmart was proposed “in their community”, only 31 percent said they would support it.  Today, that number has risen 16 percentage points to 47 percent support.  Opposition to Walmart … Read More

Fear and Loathing in Land Use Politics

The Saint ReportNIMBY, Planning and Zoning, Saint Index, saintblog, Thought Leadership

By Patrick Fox, President, The Saint Consulting Group It’s ugly out there for commercial real estate developers.  The cynicism and distrust of politicians and our political system has permeated the approvals process for commercial real estate projects and it makes the process more difficult to navigate for everyone. According to the results of the 2015 Saint Index, 61 percent of Americans … Read More