Real estate prices throughout the city keep going down – except in Willets Point, where the Mayor wants to avoid another development disappointment, and is buying up property at many times the assessed value. Despite the fact that the city is running out of money, apparently the EDC and Bloomberg feel A-OK spending millions on property that eventually will be sold back below cost to a private developer that then will profit more off of people paying rent above cost. The real absurdity is that those millions are perhaps more than the city ever spent fixing the streets, cleaning up toxic waste or performing basic city services in the Point. That money could go towards actual city services in the area to make it an independently vibrant and viable neighborhood, but instead it’s being spent to support a mostly private development scheme. It’s not quite a pyramid scheme per-se, but it reveals how the city government has been turned into a machine for artificially raising property values at the cost of just about everyone besides real estate developers.