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Group plans Main St. condos




Nonprofit to renovate Over-the-Rhine storefronts as well


By Ken Alltucker

Enquirer staff writer



Denver-based Mercy Housing plans to renovate a half-dozen storefronts and build 25 condos on or near Main Street as part of its purchase of 200 low-income Over-the-Rhine apartments from Mercy Health Partners.


Mercy Health Partners will transfer ownership of the Over-the-Rhine units and give $3.6 million to Mercy Housing. Mercy Housing also wants the city to kick in nearly $550,000 through a loan and a lead-abatement grant. Cincinnati's community development department has given tentative approval to a $290,990 loan and a $259,000 lead-abatement grant.

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Here are a few projects that are in the near-term completion stages for 2005.


These were picked from Downtown Cincinnati Inc.'s 4th Quarter State of the Downtown.


Other info came from the Cincinnati MLS, the Hamilton County Auditor and other various websites.


If any of these create a discussion, I'll split them off if necessary.


Excelsior Row/Sycamore Terrace (Mt. Auburn)

Address: 1780-1810 Sycamore St.

Description: New construction

Developer: Vineyard Homes Inc.

Units: 10 single-family homes

Unit size: 2 BR

Status: 3 or 4 completed, $229,000-$325,000







Mercy Housing

Address: Various, mostly along Main St.

Description: Non-profit renovation/management of existing units as well as 6 storefronts

Developer: Mercy Housing, Inc.

Units: 160, low-income (25 condo/135 apartments)

Unit size: n/a

Status: ongoing





31 W. Thirteenth St.

Address: 31 W. Thirteenth St.

Description: Renovation of former efficiency apt. complex...Built in 1905

Developer: Model Management/3CDC/Washington Park Housing Ltd. Partnership

Units: 37

Unit size: unknown

Status: now accepting applications, I believe





The Lackman

Address: 1237 Vine St.

Description: Building from 1900

Developer: City Center Properties

Units: 8 rental apartments, plus ground floor commercial

Unit size: unknown

Status: work begins Spring 2005






1220 Vine St.

Address: 1220 Vine St.

Description: Building from 1901

Developer: City Center Properties

Units: 15 rental apartments, plus ground floor commercial

Unit size: unknown

Status: work begins Spring 2005







1311-1313 Spring St.

Address: 1311-1313 Spring St.

Description: Buildings from 1865/1885

Developer: Urban Sites/Sam Crew Construction LLC

Units: 2 townhomes

Unit size: 1600-2000 SF

Status: under construction, $189,000-$229,000






New City Lofts

Address: 110-112 E. Thirteenth St.

Description: Buildings from 1860/1882

Developer: B2B Equities LLC

Units: 6 loft condos

Unit size: 1290-2355 SF

Status: for sale, $149,900-$224,900







Mulberry Views

Address: 126-134 Mulberry St.

Description: New construction

Developer: Vineyard Homes

Units: 5 single-family homes

Unit size: unknown, but up to 2100 SF

Status: almost completed, $209,900-$275,500 (SOLD OUT)



Before and after:





1314 Spring St.

Address: 1314 Spring St.

Description: Building from 1885

Developer: Studio 1405 LLC

Units: 4 condos

Unit size:

Status: almost completed and for sale, $125,000-$140,000






216 Orchard St.

Address: 216 Orchard St.

Description: Renovation of an old church from 1859

Developer: Bill Slone

Units: 1, possibly 2 townhomes

Unit size: 1800-3000 SF

Status: under construction



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"You don't just walk into a bar and mix it up by calling a girl fat" - buildingcincinnati speaking about new forumers

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Cincy is just really running  w. this urban living concept......color me "impressed"!


I am so glad to see this happening!



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Nice unit though.


Is this the appropriate time for a Beavis and Butthead line?



Very nice...I'm curious about how this level of development and re-development compares with other times - is OTR on a small upswing, a major upswing, or is this just the regular background level of development we'd see at any time?

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Are those rental properties on Vine going to be market-rate? It would seem they would be in a good locatation to rent to Art Academy students or even young professionals, although that area still has a ways to go. I hope at least it's not being developed for more section 8 housing because the area could really benefit from the synergystic effect of the Kroger condos, Art Academy, and some market-rate rental units, in addition to many other projects planned in the vicinity. I'm excited to see how that area's doing a year from now.

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Developers and landlords "waste money" on section 8 housing because they get a guaranteed return on their investment, assuming they attract tenants. Therefore, it's more appealing to a low-income rental provider to serve section 8 renters rather than low-income renters who might not pay their rent every month. My understanding of section 8 doesn't go beyond this basic premise. But, I hope to goodness the government would come up with a system that requires some accountability and prevents both parties from abusing the system.


Also, it was my understanding 31 W. 13th was not section 8 housing. It is geared more towards working families who must show proof of employment and income to live there. I doubt 3CDC or Washington Park Housing would be involved in bringing more section 8 housing into that neigborhood. Although, I've been wrong before.

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As I understood it, 31 W. Thirteenth was going to be sold as "low-income", but whether or not that would involve section 8, I do not know.  Various searches for section 8 apartments for rent did not turn up this property.


X--In all honesty, there are buildings missing here and there but OTR is pretty well intact for an area that was built mostly 100-150 years ago.  Of course, some streets are more together than others...some have multiple empty blocks.  Check the pic at the end of this response--it's only part of OTR, but it gives you the idea.


RIVERVIEWER--I'd say this is a major upswing.  Comparing it to the 1995-2003 projects listed on DCI's State of the Downtown, last year's activity just blows that away.  2005, well, hopefully it will be even better.


HAYNESm007--I believe 1220 Vine and the Lackman will be geared to Art Academy students.  I think they're going to be market-rate, which is what City Center Properties usually does.

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Liberty St. was widened and mowed down all buildings on its south side.  A Kentucky Fried Chicken, gas station, and some kind of health clinic built in the 80's are there as well as a half dozen empty lots.  Along with Washington Park school, Kroger, and that weird barn next to Kroger these are the only newer buildings in the neighborhood.  But there are at least 100 empty lots and probably another 100 buildings that appear to be falling down. 

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Here is an article from this week's Business Couriere.


OTR park area set to bloom

Owner gets lots of interest in 40 parcels

Dan Monk and Lucy May

Courier Senior Staff Reporters

Tom Denhart, one of Over-the-Rhine's largest low-income landlords, is looking to sell dozens of properties near Music Hall, a move that could hasten the redevelopment of the blocks surrounding Washington Park.



Denhart said there is "a lot of interest" in the roughly 40 parcels he owns in a six-block area north of the troubled park, where civic and business leaders are charting major new investments aimed at sparking a wave of revitalization in the southwestern corner of Over-the-Rhine.

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:clap:Oh this is great news! I thought Hart had liquidated all of his properties a few years ago and didnt realize he had 40 more???


ReSTOC wants to partner with other major property owners to ensure that a critical mass of buildings in that area gets redeveloped, Hutzel said. "It doesn't do us any good to target one or two properties and put $100,000 or $200,000 into them," he said. "We need a critical mass."
I don't want RESTOC redeveloping properties in critical mass proportions. I would rather them go one or two properties at a time and do a good rehab!


Smith is working on a $5 million renovation of a low-income apartment building at 13th and Race, converting 79 one-bedroom units into 37 larger apartments geared to the working poor. Model Group would like to buy more property in the area, but "prices are going up.
  well thats good!

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Some cat named Wade Dent is rehabbing 6 units at 1923/1925/1929 Elm (corner of Elm and Henry).  These apartments were built in 1880.


Yes, I know this project is pretty small but I have to give the guy props for investing some money in OTR and redoing the building.


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Guest Cincinnatus

That's an amazingly plain bldg. for 1880.  Maybe it has had previous alterations or somthing.

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The following information culled from DCI's 2005 Center City Residential Report (PDF).  Photos are from the website of the Hamilton County Auditor (property search).




1720 Pleasant St.

City of Cincinnati

Planned renovation of 1875 building

5 condo units...approx. 600 SF



72 E. Clifton Ave./79 Peete St.

Shabob LLC

Under renovation

6 condos, 1024-2580 SF




Dandridge Townhomes

508-518 Dandridge St.

City of Cincinnati

Planned development on vacant lots, first proposed in 2003

6 townhomes, 1750 SF



Goodfellows Lofts

1306 Main St.

Urban Legacy LLC

1820 building under renovation

5 units



KD Lamp

1900 block Elm St.

Open Door Development

Planned renovation of old manufacturing building

80 units



Sohn Brewery

242 W. McMicken Ave.

KDW Properties LLC

Planned renovation of 1930s warehouse

20 condo/townhouse units, 800-2000 SF

$75,000-$150,000...renovation begins early 2006



St. Charles

1206 Main St.

Bray Development

Planned renovation of 1866 building

3 condos, 1300-3200 SF, 2-3 BR/1-2.5 BA







(DISCLAIMER: I've listed "demolition" in many of these where the square footage of the new residences doesn't square up with the buildings' footprints.  I have listed "renovation" where they are similar.  These are just guesses by me and have not been verified.)


1805 Frintz St.

(unsure where this house will end up, as the lot for this address doesn't show)




29 E. Clifton Ave.

Sondra Walls

Pre-development, involves renovation of 1880 structure

1850 SF, $185,000



49 E. Clifton Ave.

Sondra Walls

Pre-development, involves renovation of two-family 1880 building

1640 SF, $164,000



55 E. Clifton Ave.

Chancie Walls/Sondra Walls

Pre-development, involves renovation of 1870 apartment building

3182 SF, $298,200



57 E. Clifton Ave.

Chancie Walls/Sondra Walls

Pre-development, involves renovation of 1882 apartment building

3086 SF, $292,600



1918 Vine St.

Sondra Walls

Pre-development, involves demolition of 1876 two-family dwelling

3096 SF, $294,000



47 E. Clifton Ave.

Vernon W. Menifee III

Pre-development, involves demolition of an 1865 two-family dwelling



31 E. Clifton Ave.

Roy and Ruth Orling

Pre-development, renovation of an 1880 single-family dwelling



2 Hust Alley

Roy and Ruth Orling

Pre-development, renovation of an 1870 single-family dwelling

2361 SF, $236,100



39 E. Clifton Ave.

Paul and Carol Ann Koeninger

Pre-development, renovation of an 1870 two-family dwelling (gray one in middle)

1240 SF, $124,000



75 Peete St.

Paul and Carol Ann Koeninger

Predevelopment, renovation of 1870 single-family dwelling



38 E. Clifton Ave.

David and Carolynn Durrett

Predevelopment, renovation of 1869 single-family dwelling

1342 SF, $234,200



Light House/Manor House (Lofts on Broadway)

1111-1113 Broadway

Urban Sites

Predevelopment, on market soon and can be seen on the OTR Tour of Living (June 5th)

2500 SF (Light)-3400 SF (Manor)

(what the buildings formerly looked like):



Pendleton Mews

Spring, Pendleton and Dandridge Streets

Project kicked off in 2002 by Over-the-Rhine Foundation and Verdin Co.

Now they're saying fall 2005--we shall see....

17 units, $250,000+

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This is great news for OTR. Some of those buildings are in very high-crime sections of the neighborhood and (if sold/rented at market rate) would be the only true market rate housing literally within 2 blocks.  True urban pioneers!


My too-good-to-be-true list:

2 Hust Alley

1720 Pleasant St.

1918 Vine St.

and all the double-digit E. Clifton St. addresses.

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Can you guys describe the geographic patterns of which areas are seeing most of these projects and which areas have thus far received little such attention?  I'd have to look up every address to figure this out for myself, but I'm sure many of you can describe it off the top of your head.

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The last thing OTR needs is a broad-based, city-coordinated redevelopment.  If redevelopment is to occur, it has to happen organically, through the creativity of residents and dedicated developers. 


Nobody who lives in OTR today expects a sanitized environment.  Which is why there are so many cool, interesting people down here.

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Generally, the areas around Main St have seen the more redevelopment. On Main itself, on 13th between Clay and Main, on Clay, Orchard St., 14th east of Main, Broadway, Spring St, Sycamore, Mulberry.


Sporadic redevelopment is happening all over OTR, though. A building here, a building there.


Come to the OTR Tour of Homes on June 5th and see for yourself!

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Many of you may know this, but the KD Lamp building above is inappropriately named, and "old manufacturing building" doesn't do justice to what was made there. KD Lamp was only the most recent tenant. More famously, that building was part of the Christian Moerlein Brewery complex. If I'm not mistaken, it was the barrel house and bottling plant.


Fingers-crossed on that one. I don't think a final proposal has been submitted.


And wasn't the Sohn Brewery also Clyffside?


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^ Yes, the Sohn Brewery was Clyffside.


PigBoy...the single-family ones I posted yesterday are pretty much all at/near the corner of Vine and Clifton, and then going a block or so east from there.  The last two are on the southeast side of OTR around the Pendleton sub-neighborhood.

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I don't want to bring anybody down, but I also want to post on this thread some of the buildings OTR is going to lose.


Demolition permits were applied for the following property:

23 E. Thirteenth


It was actually being listed for $239,000: "Deutche Gegenfeitige Derlicherungs - Gefellechaft von Cincinnati & the Stafford in Historic Over-the-Rhine."  I guess there were no takers.






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Here are a few more:



1331 Spring St.

single-family home, $199,000




1124 Main St.

former home of Bar Cincinnati being sold for $525K...sale pending




1400 block of Walnut St.

11 lots on upper Walnut near Liberty (around Grammer's) for sale as a package ($595K)

Hopefully this gets developed!




1300 block of Spring St.

11 contiguous lots for sale for $250K

This area is ripe for development!



Magnolia St.

I wish these babies could be cleaned up.  They're right near Music Hall!



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A couple of ceremonies for National Homeownership Month in OTR (outside of the Tour of Homes, of course):


New City Lofts ribbon-cutting

110 E. Thirteenth

June 3rd, 10 AM


City Lofts on Dunlap ribbon-cutting

1908 Dunlap

June 7th, 10 AM

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From the 6/3/05 Enquirer:


City Lofts on Dunlap project seen as urban breakthrough

By Joe Wessels

Enquirer contributor


Those taking the Over-the-Rhine Tour of Homes on Sunday will get a new experience: Seeing the first completed condominium project north of Liberty Street in the historic neighborhood.


The 15,000-square-foot City Lofts on Dunlap is inside the nearly 120-year-old Joseph Scheid & Sons Co. brick furniture factory, which most recently was home to the R.J. Patton awning company. It sits at 1908 Dunlap St., near Findlay Street, and marks the first major housing revitalization project completed in the area anchored by the market.




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I tip my hat to the builders and buyers. They should get an UrbanOhio award. For those going to Tour of Homes in OTR - take pictures! I got out voted and going to Summer Fair at Coney Island instead.

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A few more....



* 217-219 Orchard St. has been converted to condos going for $369K each.  I believe this is an Urban Sites property.

217 Orchard listing

219 Orchard listing



* 1319 Spring St. has been rehabbed as a single-family, selling for $269.9K.  This was built in 1900.

1319 Spring listing

Before and after:

1319springbefore6cq.jpg          1319springafter2jm.jpg


* The 11 lots I mentioned earlier on the 1300 block of Spring St. are in the process of being bought.


* To add to the photo of the City Lofts on Dunlap that were posted from the OTR Tour of Homes (City Photos), here are a couple more from its listing showing a common courtyard:

cityloftsdunlapback8nx.jpg          cityloftsdunlapside8rx.jpg

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Pigboy asked (about a month ago) about where the OTR development was.

This bldg is directly across the street from the KD Lamp/Moerlein bldg

and right around the corner from the Dunlap lofts bldg


This area is just a few blocks NW of Findlay Market.

There is a bar at Dunlap & Henry, Charlies Dunlap Cafe, that stands to make a fortune during development of these properties. :-)

They have a cool beer can collection, too.



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* The Otis Brown guy I mentioned in the Mulberry Hill thread also has permits to destroy two structures in OTR.  The owner/tax address is a woman who lives on Milton St.  I hope it is investment (e.g. something gets built) in the neighborhood and not a way to avoid maintenance.  The properties are 126 E. Liberty (1873) and an adjacent garage at 128 E. Liberty (no big loss):

126eliberty7oy.jpg          128eliberty0vf.jpg



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^What exactly is happening on that NE corner of Main and Liberty? If it's gonna be condos that a huge piece of the puzzle for that area. Replace that Quick Mart at Liberty and Sycamore and the unsightly building behind with housing and you'll have one big fluid neighborhood.

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Replace that Quick Mart at Liberty and Sycamore and the unsightly building behind with housing
  That quickmart is a nuisance  for the mulberry hill area. The drug dealing and prostituion going on and around the parking lot and the trash and lighting are disgusting. Is the building behind the quicky the one that is owned by the OTR foundation? That would have a great view from a restored balcony.

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* News on 1720-1722 Pleasant St.


The city of Cincinnati has a preferred developer agreement with Jennifer LeMasters and Matthew Wirtz, who have expressed an interest in the redevelopment of the vacant property.  They now have 12 months to come up with a plan and, if a workable plan comes about, to purchase from the city.





The City owned property located at 1720-1722-Pleasant Street is one of over twenty City owned properties in the Findlay Market area of Over-the-Rhine that have been offered to the public through Request For Proposals (RFP’s) on several occasions. The developers Lemasters and Wirtz responded to one of the RFPs. Their proposal includes the development of three condominium units and off street parking. The proposed development is one half block from the newly renovated Findlay Market House. It is very important to move forward with the proposed development to create the energy necessary to revitalize the Findlay Market area of Over The Rhine.




Development Schedule (PDF), p. 9


EDIT (7/6/05): This passed council unanimously at the 6/29/05 meeting.


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other than 101 and 105 Peete st, 100 E Clifton and one other on Race, I do not know of any other OTR Foundation properties.  With the development on Peete, Frintz, and soon to be E Clifton on the West, and the Vernon Raider project on the East, a big squeeze will be placed on that quicky mart.  Some other redevelopment is bieng done on the corner of Peete and Main.  I do not have the details on who is doing this or what their plan is but I do also know that some big names are eyeing Rothenburg School for a Condo development.

The tire shop mentioned above was purchased by Vernon Raider only a couple of months ago (serious tax problems is what I heard)  so watch this area within the year and it should turn around.  E Clifton will be the next big push and it will only be a matter of time before it is bought up after the Hohlbein project just north of it is completed.  The goal is to take Liberty and north and it is only a matter of time.

Another project I am sure you are all aware of it on Conroy, the Klotter Development, we have decided to include it in the October 9th tour of homes because these places are wonderful.  5 more will be built in addition to the 9 already standing.  I lived on Klotter 12 years ago and let me tell you things have changed.

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