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Cincinnati: CUF / Corryville: Development and News

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Yeah it's appalling what they're doing to those parcels. I don't understand how the planning board and council sign off on projects like these. Grow a spine and stick up for the city's legacy.

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^They have no control over aesthetics or style. This building, though hideous, is following the rules and technically doing nothing wrong. They can't just be like, "we don't like the quality of this building that meets code and is being built with private money completely within the confines of a very legal process of acquisition. Does that suck? Yes! But unless we get architectural review boards that have the legal ability to stop or delay a project there's no current system in place to stop these types of monstrosities from being built.

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I meant code as in building code, not zoning code. Wasn't clear on that.

 

They COULD deny a variance, but denying a variance because of aesthetics would very likely open the city up to a legal dispute. That's not what variances are about. Having dealt with them the aesthetics are almost never even discussed. The fact that this building is hideous still doesn't matter to any zoning variances required.

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^They have no control over aesthetics or style. This building, though hideous, is following the rules and technically doing nothing wrong. They can't just be like, "we don't like the quality of this building that meets code and is being built with private money completely within the confines of a very legal process of acquisition. Does that suck? Yes! But unless we get architectural review boards that have the legal ability to stop or delay a project there's no current system in place to stop these types of monstrosities from being built.

 

My issue is that they were allowed to tear down an historically significant and beautiful structure (Chrisy's) for this, and that they will do the same to the "Clifton natural foods" building, which also looks great and adds to the neighborhood. So for me, the real issue is the loss of historic assets, which they never should have been allowed to demo.  The problem starts long before an architectural review board sees renderings like this.

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This is true, but the discussion was merely about this particular building's aesthetics. We'll need to get into entirely different territory to be able to stop legal demolitions.

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Apartment project at Christy’s/Lenhardt’s gets key approval after long, messy meeting

Oct 17, 2014, 2:11pm EDT

Tom Demeropolis Reporter- Cincinnati Business Courier

 

 

The new version for a 190-unit apartment development at the corner of West Clifton Avenue and West McMillan Street will now go before the neighborhoods committee and then to the full city council for a vote, after a long and messy City Planning Commission meeting.

 

 

Gilbane Development Co. is proposing a mixed-use building on the 1.65-acre site with 190 apartment units. The building will have two levels of underground parking with 380 spaces, commercial space of up to 9,000 square feet and a row of six, three-story townhouses.

 

http://www.bizjournals.com/cincinnati/news/2014/10/17/apartment-project-at-christy-s-lenhardt-s-gets-key.html?page=all

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Yep, voiced my opinion on that article as well.

 

This city is frustrating me lately. If I see one more EIFS box I'm going to quit my job as an architect and go cry in a corner until people develop taste again.

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Yep, voiced my opinion on that article as well.

 

This city is frustrating me lately. If I see one more EIFS box I'm going to quit my job as an architect and go cry in a corner until people develop taste again.

 

You don't think that one day we'll treasure our historic EIFs from the late Obamian period?


www.cincinnatiideas.com

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It is partially infill. They demolished buildings for a majority of the project, but there is a sizable existing parking lot that is being filled.

 

That being said, I hate that the Clifton Natural Foods buildings will be demolished. That's going to really hurt that intersection...

 

Clifton Heights needed to implement form-based code when they had the chance to stop this ugly monstrosity from being built.

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Pretty sure FBC would actually have no impact on this project.  The massing isn't really the issue with this building as much as the materials, and the fact that they are demolishing solid, aesthetically pleasing buildings to build.  Don't think FBC would do much to help with either of those. 

 

I think the new lighting and activity on the site of the surface lot will be welcomed, and will help fill in an important gap in the street.  It sucks to loose the corner buildings, but this project will result in an increase in residential units, new ground floor commercial space, and as a side benefit, Ludlow got the relocated Clifton Natural Foods which I think is a much better place for it, and a huge asset for that community.

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Using the T5MS FBC district (likely what McMillan would be zoned under FBC):

 

It would have prevented townhomes from being placed on a single family residential street like Lyon (would have a different zoning than McMillan).

 

It would prevent residential uses on the ground floor.

 

Within 20' of the rear Lot Line, the building may not be more than a half-story taller than the allowed height of adjacent buildings.

 

Any buildings wider than 150’ must be designed to read as a series of buildings no wider than 75’ each.

 

All in all, it would have forced a better design than what is currently being built.

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^Thanks for the info! I'm kind of torn about whether or not design should be regulated.  I think it's a good idea to encourage design that positively contributes to the urban environment, but I'm not crazy about telling private land owners and developers what they can and can't do with their property. 

 

Are townhomes not preferable to single family houses (at least for the sake of dense urban development)? What's with the point about not having a building more than a half story taller than the adjacent buildings? A little contrast in height and form can be good for a neighborhood, I think.  Anyways, I think this project is a considerable upgrade in terms of density, and it puts new construction on a couple of large surface lots.  It puts more people in the heart of the retail district, and should contribute to the street life of what is already becoming a pretty vibrant NBD.  For these reasons, I don't hate this project, despite the loss of the couple of buildings on the corner of Clifton and McMillan.

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Basically, if a 5 story building is permitted on McMillan, but a 3 story house is permitted on Lyon, it avoids having a large building tower over a house. You can have different heights in the same district. It just protects the smaller scale streets.

 

The townhome vs. house thing is just trying to keep the character of a street in tact. Townhomes often look very out of place in an otherwise-single family house street.

 

EDIT: Also, if you want to look at the FBC, you can find it here. T5MS stands for Transect 5 - Main Street (The higher the number, the more dense, basically).

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The regulation of height based on neighboring buildings is a really awful part of any code language. Because people can build wherever they want below that line. Let's say there is a line of three lots. One building is 5 stories and 50' tall. The middle lot decides to underutilize his site and builds a one story, 12 foot tall building that's not very urban. The third lot is then required to be, at most, around 20 feet tall. Which they will apply for a variance, clogging the system, and introducing completely unnecessary complications and financial detriments to the project.

 

The Hillside Overlay District is riddled with this type of "based on the average of neighboring properties" BS and it's frustrating since they almost always grant variances in these situations but it just adds another month to the project which just = more money tied up in the front end.

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^Thanks for the info! I'm kind of torn about whether or not design should be regulated.  I think it's a good idea to encourage design that positively contributes to the urban environment, but I'm not crazy about telling private land owners and developers what they can and can't do with their property. 

 

Are townhomes not preferable to single family houses (at least for the sake of dense urban development)? What's with the point about not having a building more than a half story taller than the adjacent buildings? A little contrast in height and form can be good for a neighborhood, I think.  Anyways, I think this project is a considerable upgrade in terms of density, and it puts new construction on a couple of large surface lots.  It puts more people in the heart of the retail district, and should contribute to the street life of what is already becoming a pretty vibrant NBD.  For these reasons, I don't hate this project, despite the loss of the couple of buildings on the corner of Clifton and McMillan.

 

I'm hoping the result is that people will demand it if they are educated that something much better can be designed and built.

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^Thanks for the info! I'm kind of torn about whether or not design should be regulated.  I think it's a good idea to encourage design that positively contributes to the urban environment, but I'm not crazy about telling private land owners and developers what they can and can't do with their property. 

 

Are townhomes not preferable to single family houses (at least for the sake of dense urban development)? What's with the point about not having a building more than a half story taller than the adjacent buildings? A little contrast in height and form can be good for a neighborhood, I think.  Anyways, I think this project is a considerable upgrade in terms of density, and it puts new construction on a couple of large surface lots.  It puts more people in the heart of the retail district, and should contribute to the street life of what is already becoming a pretty vibrant NBD.  For these reasons, I don't hate this project, despite the loss of the couple of buildings on the corner of Clifton and McMillan.

 

I'm hoping the result is that people will demand it if they are educated that something much better can be designed and built.

 

 

People, please quit making excuses for this project.  It's a money-grab by a rich out-of-town developer who doesn't give a damn about Cincinnati, plain and simple. 

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Oh dear, more old mansions to be crushed. I live an Mt Auburn, and Victorians are getting dozed left and right, as in Corryville. The church at McMillan and Auburn is going down, stained glass is just about stripped now. That one has been doomed ever since they moved the road within 4 feet of it, pretty much.

 

Meanwhile down my street, the Governor's house, circa 1870, is patched with tarpaper, and we are sposedly in a historic district. However, all the new stuff does put a tad more pressure on whatever old piles are lucky enough to be left standing to be patched and prettied up.

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$25 million apartment project coming to Uptown Cincinnati

Nov 17, 2014, 2:22pm EST

Tom Demeropolis Reporter- Cincinnati Business Courier

 

 

A $25 million residential project is coming to the Uptown area of Cincinnati.

 

Uptown Rental Properties LLC and North American Properties are partnering on the huge project, which will be located on property bordered by William Howard Taft Road, Euclid Avenue, East Corry Street and Eden Avenue. Named 101 East Corry, this latest project will add 108 apartment units, with beds for 272 people, that will be built on a two-story parking garage and include eight townhomes along East Corry Street to block the view of the garage.

 

http://www.bizjournals.com/cincinnati/blog/2014/11/25-million-apartment-project-coming-to-uptown.html

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errr..  the doomed WH Taft block picture .

 

index.php?action=dlattach;topic=26241.0;attach=12565;image

 

The Pregnancy Care Center on the left purchased the red building on the far right and will be moving into that. They also demolished another building (the next building to the right) for parking.

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That was what they told us a year ago. It's possible that their plans have changed and they ended up selling the red building. I tried to look it up on the auditor's site but am having trouble finding results searching for Taft or William Howard Taft as the street name...

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Just checked CAGIS.  Every building on that block except for the actual Pregnancy Care building is now owned by Uptown Properties under various LLC's. A number of the buildings were only acquired this year. The red building was acquired in March.

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^I'm pretty sure yes. They're still doing a quite a bit of construction, so I imagine the old posts and overhead wire will come down once the new underground utilities are connected.

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I just don't get why they put in fake gas lanterns and kept the contemporary red aches. They look awful next to each other. If they had simply chosen a contemporary fixture for the streetlights I would be 100% on board with this redesign.

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Council approves rezoning of site near UC for major development

Dec 10, 2014, 8:13pm EST Updated: Dec 11, 2014, 6:15am EST

Chris Wetterich Staff reporter- Cincinnati Business Courier

 

 

The Cincinnati City Council approved the rezoning necessary so that Gilbane Development Co. can build a mixed-use development and parking garage at the former site of Lenhardt's Restaurant and Christy's Bar near the University of Cincinnati.

 

Council modified the rezoning that had been approved by the Cincinnati Planning Commission so that cars could not enter and exit from Lyon Street, a residential street. Cars will have to exit from Clifton Avenue or West McMillan Street.

 

http://www.bizjournals.com/cincinnati/news/2014/12/10/council-approves-rezoning-of-site-near-uc-for.html

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Oh, Smitherman:

 

While both praised Gilbane for trying to work with neighbors, council members Yvette Simpson and Christopher Smitherman opposed the rezoning, citing neighborhood concerns.

 

[...]

 

"I don't have the visibility of where we're going," Smitherman said. "What is the next step? If we say yes here and make the change in the zoning, how do we stop the next development?"

 

Has Smitherman ever supported anything? Isn't he the chair of the economic development committee? Shouldn't he be supporting... economic development? I mean, I'm not a huge fan of this project, but why is he already concerned about stopping "the next development" that comes along for Uptown?

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