One of the biggest hurdles I face when starting a new project is the setup work of the project. It's the work that isn't related to the task you are trying to accomplish.
When you start a new project, you have to create the project, worry about the directory structure, setup a build system, etc. before you even start tackling the problem you are trying to solve. Having a base project to start from mitigates some this startup time and you end up creating a repetitive pattern to work with.
This is much the same reason that the HTML5 Boilerplate project has been so successful. It's a common starting point for a lot of projects.
My plan is for this project to morph over time to adapt to my ever changing coding habits, and to reduce the friction of getting new projects off the ground.
Have a look for your self. Feel free to fork it and add your own bits. https://github.com/pierceray/baseproject