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STILL DEMANDING ANSWERS ABOUT THE EARTHQUEST PROJECT!

Some residents in east Montgomery County are becoming impatient with an amusement park that has been on the table since 2005.

That project is called EarthQuest and is expected to be in New Caney, Texas.

There have been millions of dollars spent on the project already but still there is no amusement park.

There is a planned town hall meeting in Montgomery County Thursday to address the project and the expenditures.

County officials in charge of the project have been criticized for lavish spending even though EarthQuest has not materialized.

The only thing you will find is a sign on 59 near Porter proclaiming the project is coming.

Sources tell the Insite residents are expected to be so angry at the community meeting this week that extra deputy constables are being called in to monitor the event.

 

Background on the project:

It was back in 2005 when a tract of land became the amusement hopes and dreams of residents in New Caney just off of U.S. Highway 59.

But in the last seven years, nothing has materialized with the theme park now called Earthquest.

The $500 million theme park that has yet to get off the ground, has sucked up $10 million in taxpayer dollars for expenses, missed the 2008 opening deadline, and the first developer filed for bankruptcy in 2012.

But officials with the East Montgomery County Improvement District still have confidence it will open one day. Through bonds on taxpayers’ backs, the district is footing the bill for the empty land for now.

The non-existent theme park is not without controversy. Frank McCrady, CEO of the East Montgomery County Improvement District, which oversees the project with the developer, has come under fire.

An investigation by the Tribune newspaper in Humble shows a mounting tab of expenses by officials with the improvement district during the development of Earthquest:

Multiple trips to Las Vegas, thousands of dollars in restaurant receipts, $20,000 in Houston Rockets tickets and more. How does the CEO explain that?

“First and foremost, those are two separate issues … we will utilize those as tools in recruitment,” says McCardy.

In the meantime, there are those in New Caney who have given up hope that the theme park will be built, even though reputable builder DR Horton and new developer Countour have made an offer to buy the land. It would save the plan from bankruptcy.

And then are those who are keeping hope alive for the amusement park that’s been seven years in the making.

McCardy says he expects groundbreaking to begin in 18 months.

 

Financial Earthquakes for ‘Earthquest’: MyFoxHOUSTON.com

 

10 Responses

  1. Honesty i have forgotten about it. And i do not think that it will ever be built but it would be nice if it was because it would bring more jobs to this area, and me and my son would have a great time.

  2. This project has implded and EMCID does not have any money in the new budget for it. The dubious consultant, Don Allen Holbrook, has sued The Tribune, Cynthia Calvert, The Houston press, Craig Malisow, The Pahrump Vally Times, Frank Maurizio, me (Soapboxmom) and shockingly John and Jane Does (taxpayers who have commented on this matter of public concern.)

  3. Don Allen Holbrook’s frivolous case is falling apart. He dropped the case against our own Craig Malisow and the Houston Press. His is still suing the innocent taxpayers as John and Jane Does for commenting on this vital matter of public concern ($21,000,000.00 in bond money the taxpayers are responsible for) Holbrook should never be invited to the great state of Texas ever again. This is an outrage!!!!

  4. This joke of a project masterminded by Don Allen Holbrook is now the subject of an investigation by the FBI and other enforcement agencies. It is high time there be some accountability for the millions of tax dollars flushed on this dino disaster!

  5. http://www.ourtribune.com/article.php?id=14410

    Don Allen Holbrook has continued to receive payments from EMCID / Frank “The Bank” McCrady” for a charity he himself claimed was on hiatus. McCrady is also trying to hide the legal bills from the taxpayers that are getting soaked. Unbelievable!

  6. Contrary to all the rumors and innuendo that social media mogul and cyber stalker Soapboxmom the project has gone through a transfer of responsibility from the original developer John Marlin to the new developer Chris Brown. Brown has over 30 years of theme park development experience and is a former Disney executive in their imagineering division. Large projects such as these often go through modifications and take anywhere from 8 to 14 years on average to come to fruition. EMCID knew from the start that this was a longterm project. I and several others were hired by the creators and developers as contract consultants not as developers, bankers or any other expertise other than our niche expertise. The global financial crisis in 2008 was the biggest factor in derailing the original developer. The project is now much better positioned for funding. Placing the blame for failure on the consultants and vendors is simply unprofessional and not realistic. I was never the master mind of this project. I was hired to fulfill functions that EMCID, the creator and developers all agreed they desired. I fulfilled my obligations and I was paid for only a portion of the fees they agreed to pay. The responsibility to pay all of us that did our job was guaranteed to us by EMCID that we would be paid. We have all waited patiently for our final payments. Mr. Brown is working with legitimate investment bankers to find the funding now that the capital markets have begun to unthaw a bit. Placing failure on the consultants and on EMCID for that matter is not realistic… this project is delayed due to capital markets not due to the viability of the project or the ability of the current developer Mr. Brown to develop, design and operate it. EMCID even required and Mr. Brown provided a current 2012 feasibility review from an internationally renowned third party theme park economic analyst and the report came back even stronger than the original in 2007-2008. I believe the public will be very happy once the capital markets begin to invest in projects of this size once more.

  7. Don Allen Holbrook, the brainchild of this EarthQuest debacle, is still going bananas online.

    http://economicdeveloper.com/2013/09/10/karma-is-pure-and-not-delusional/

    He is doing everything he can to get the attention of potential EarthQuest investors. Boy are those investors going to run!!!

  8. EAST MONTGOMERY COUNTY IMPROVEMENT DISTRICT / Directors approve contracts / Contract OK’d for theme park consultant

    SUZANNE WEST, Houston Chronicle Correspondent

    Thu 11/29/2007 Houston Chronicle, Section ThisWeek, Page 6, 2 STAR Edition

    East Montgomery County Improvement District directors approved contracts for services to the district. These ranged from site surveying to retaining consulting services in connection with the Earth Quest theme park project at a special directors meeting Nov. 7.
    The directors will retain Don Holbrook and the Vercitas Group for consulting services in connection with the for-profit theme park portion of the Earth Quest project.
    Under the terms of the $25,000 contract, Holbrook will provide the district with outside consulting services connected with securing financing and investors, said Frank McCrady, EMCID president and CEO.

    “We want to make sure he stays with the project and makes the presentations,” said McCrady.
    Holbrook has already been working with the project’s promoters, founders and the district and was actively involved in the process that selected the site of the Earth Quest venture.
    The district has five potential financing sources for the for-profit portion of the project, he said.

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