Stories

The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 27,000 investigative stories.

Most of our stories are not available for download but can be easily ordered by contacting the Resource Center directly at 573-882-3364 or rescntr@ire.org where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "developer" ...

  • Feeding frenzy

    Riverfront Times reports on controversies surrounding the prospective development of 438 acres of prime North County land, recently bought by the Saint Louis Airport. "Two developers, three cities, the airport and the county are engaged in a dogfight ... and there's plenty of sleaze to go around," the newspaper reports. The story reveals that neither of the 400-million development game participants cares about the survival of Kinloch, a little town with inexperienced administration and small budget, which was the previous owner of the land. The reporter follows the litigation process started by Kinloch, claiming that the airport might have misrepresented the reasons for the buyout of the land to the FAA.
  • Battle Royale

    Charlotte Magazine reports on the battle between a city of trees and a city of developers. Trees need to be cleared in order to build the houses Charlotte desperately needs, but, the magazine reports, builders may not be thinking about the best ways to save trees. Clear-cutting also leads to problems greater that aesthetic ones, like erosion.
  • A Developing Problem

    Pitch Weekly reports on a Kansas City neighbohood assocation going to the mat with city council officals to prevent new development in their area. The association accuses the council of siding with the developers because they're afraid of getting sued. If development occurrs, the neighborhood assoication fears increased traffic, crime and storm water runoff.
  • Property Values

    Westword reports on a large developer in Denver attempting to build an apartment complex in a historic neighborhood. Citizens are concerned what the new development would do to the area and the developer has been willing to make some concessions.
  • Scenes From A Sprawl

    Westword reports on a battle between citizens and developers over the town's growth cap in sleepy little Berthoud, CO. "Local growth control doesn't stand a chance against multi-milliondollar developers," Westword quotes activist John Meyer.
  • Reaping a biotech blunder

    O'Reilly tells what happened when genetically modified corn not approved for human consumption started finding its way into corn chips, muffin mixes and other foods. In 1995, scientists produced a genetically modified corn plant that poisoned the corn-borer, an inch-long worm that costs farmers $1 billion a year. "Plant Genetics ... had developed another borer-killing gene that it called Starlink. However, the toxin that Starlink produced in the corn plant resembled a substance that triggers violent allergies in some people." Instead of waiting until Starlink's safety in humans could be established, the developers promised to use Starlink seed only to farmers using it for feed corn." The plan didn't work. After three years on the market, Starlink "began showing up in all sorts of places it didn't belong, including tacos, corn chips, breweries and muffin mix." Although it's not a disaster (nobody has been known to get sick from Starlink corn), the fiasco may have long-term consequences beyond the half-billion dollars it will cost Aventis.
  • The Story of Sprawl

    "A city is composed of four elements: water, land, buildings and people. Urban areas function when these elements combine in the right proportions. Too much or too little of any one, and the city develops the signs of strain: overcrowding, water shortages, jammed highways. As North America's third-fastest-growing city, Toronto is not immune." Reporter John Lorinc reports on the urban sprawl of Toronto and raises the question of possible solutions.
  • Just Deserts? Arizona's Rural Sprawl: Fast Growth Spans Wildcat' Subdivisions

    The Wall Street Journal reports on rural sprawl in neighborhoods near Tucson, Arizona. The areas are known as 'wildcat' subdivisions-"sprawling tracts of land divided by a succession of owners in a way that leaves them exempt from basic county building requirements, such as putting in roads, sewers, and sidewalks . . . The problem has spread like cancer through Arizona, largely because of the tremendous demand for land here, and state law that prevents county officials from clamping down on wildcat growth." In addition, "while wildcat residents pay the same property tax rate as others in the county, the per-capita revenue from wildcat areas is far lower " due to the value of lots and the inequality of mobile homes versus Tucson houses. County officials in the area say that "bringing wildcat subdivisions up to code, including land surveys, roads, sewers and all the rest, could cost as much as $55 million a year. . . money the county doesn't have."
  • Anatomy of a Deal

    "'Anatomy of a deal' and the series that followed covered the operation of the Fort McClellan Joint Powers Authority (JPA) in its mission to transform the former Fort McClellan Army base into part of the city of Anniston. The title story examined the specifics of the sale of the fort's prime real estate, the Buckner Circle area, to a group of developers with inside connections at the JPA. The story revealed the JPA gave the groups favorable treatment especially in neglecting to have the property appraised. The series that followed covered the JPA's response to the public fallout over the deal. Most residents of the area consider the redevelopment of the Fort McClellan of premier import, and the backlash over the deal reflected their concerns. Eventually the JPA was forces to open its meetings and records to the public."
  • Kiss Your House Good-Bye

    A Reader's Digest report examines how city governments exert their power to take private property for public uses. The story uncovers a number of cases that expose how governments have applied the so-called "eminent domain for the benefits of particular persons, not the public." The investigation describes how, in order to make people sell, some real-estate agents have allegedly hinted on the possible use of eminent domain. One of the key findings is that "higher tax revenue is often the reason cities take a person's home, even when the ostensible reason is cleaning up "blight."