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Norwood: Development and News

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^ That's the spirit, it sucks already so that means it's ok to just make things worse rather than working harder to overcome the location's inherent flaws.  This is why we can't have nice things.

 

This project, specifically, is easy to critique because of the pivotal role the city of Norwood played throughout the process.  They seized property through imminent domain and then closed off streets entirely. The city is supposed to ensure an attractive overall environment is created through planning and zoning.  In this case, Norwood is the reason this site is so awful.

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Major redevelopment to bring class A office space to U.S. Playing Card: EXCLUSIVE

Tom Demeropolis Reporter- Cincinnati Business Courier

 

A group of national and local developers purchased the historic U.S. Playing Card property in Norwood this week with plans to turn 470,000 square feet of industrial space into class A office.

 

Chris Semarjian, managing member of Industrial Commerce Ltd., said the conversion will be a $45 million to $60 million project. Semarjian’s Cleveland-based company and its Cincinnati strategic partners closed on the purchase from Jarden Corp. late Monday. The buyers liked the property’s location along Interstate 71 near the Norwood Lateral.

 

http://www.bizjournals.com/cincinnati/news/2014/01/29/major-redevelopment-to-bring-class-a.html

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^ FINALLY!  Mainly because I reside in Norwood (2-blocks from "The Tank" @ Surrey Square), for several years I've routinely meandered past this magnificently-forlorn complex and simply  begged for its phoenix-like reprieve.  Now it may be here...  (We'll see.)

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Yeah it will definitely be good for Norwood.  I think it's interesting how alot of the area around 71 and Norwood Lateral is being developed and redeveloped all of a sudden.  I also live in the area and I think it's a good thing.

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It'll be great to see that beautiful building put back to use. I'm especially interested to see what they do with landscaping the greenspaces. Looks like they'll be creating courtyards in between the buildings (I imagine the original Hannaford design had open courtyards that were later filled in) and putting trails in the median along Park Ave.  If done well, that median could be a really nice addition for the neighborhood.

 

This might be overly optimistic but the surface parking on the eastern edge just seems to begging for some new construction in the future (if demand continues to grow). From a transportation perspective, the location is a bit odd. Despite being right at the intersection of I-71 and Norwood Lateral, it doesn't really have easy highway access. And there are no bus stops nearby. Makes me worry about those 1,500 cars rushing home in the afternoon, clogging the residential streets in the neighborhood. Ideally, a lot of the people working there would live in the neighborhood and just walk to work (a lot of Norwood and Oakley are within a 15 minute walk). 

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Should definitely be good for Norwood. I hope the conversion is carried out with enough grace it deserves the designation Class A space.

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Yeah it has been up for awhile, probably 2-3 months at least.  The building is starting to get really tall.  It's impressive looking from the highway as you are driving by.  I know a lot of people are not happy with this project, but I really think that compared to the prior phases of Rookwood, this phase is way more dense and exciting. 

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The entire Rookwood complex reminds me of that third project I did in Architecture studio when I decided to take all of the design rules and do the exact opposite.

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Here’s the latest on Rookwood Exchange’s office tower: PHOTOS

Tom Demeropolis Reporter- Cincinnati Business Courier

 

The team at Jeffrey R. Anderson Real Estate Inc. doesn’t typically develop office buildings.

 

In the case of the new 250,000-square-foot office tower rising over Interstate 71 at Rookwood Exchange, that’s a good thing.

 

When you dine, you eat with your eyes first. That’s why the design of the restaurant – the floors, the tables, the dishes – it all matters. J.R. Anderson, vice president of development for Norwood-based Jeffrey R. Anderson, is bringing that same mentality and attention to detail to the office building at Rookwood Exchange.

 

http://www.bizjournals.com/cincinnati/blog/2014/07/here-s-the-latest-on-rookwood-exchange-s-office.html?page=all

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Hard to get excited about a high quality building when the project utterly destroyed the Edwards streetscape for no reason. This continues to show that conventional developers build trophies to themselves, not pieces of the urban fabric.

 

Meanwhile at the Banks, we get the opposite. For all of Cincinnati's changes this decade, it's still a really unsophisticated development market.

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Does anyone know if they are leaving the parking garage that overlooks the highway like the way it is now? It looks awful just a giant concrete block... Any facade going over it?

 

And yes this whole development is very strange and cumbersome to access with how it is laid out and everything faces inwards towards the parking lot... Could have been a really cool development.

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With a gorgeous EIFS courtyard fronting the beautiful I-71. Nothing like highway noise in your courtyard, private balconies, and residence to scream "luxury."

 

This is worse than U Square. At least U Square, ugly as it may be, fronts a street with retail and restaurants, bars, etc. This is sited in the parking lot and opens in the rear to the highway. Genius site planning.

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I guess it does. Much moreso than the small part that faces this development's (overly convoluted, poorly laid out) parking lot.

 

I feel bad for those buildings. Is it pessimistic of me to say I that I feel that stretch of Edwards is doomed?

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No surprise here...  Car crashes into Courtyard Marriott

 

Norwood police are searching for the driver of a car who crashed into a hotel and fled the scene early Thursday.

 

"We had a vehicle crash into the Courtyard Marriott. It went through some windows in the back side of the building (and) into the kitchen area," said Norwood police Sgt. Tim Buchanan.

 

"It's pretty good damage."


"It's just fate, as usual, keeping its bargain and screwing us in the fine print..." - John Crichton

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That didn't take long.

 

Placing your building directly across from a major exit on the highway is just begging for someone to drunkenly (just assuming here) smash through your building late at night.

 

Edit: I can't read.

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^I'm actually curious if any of the ICFs were damaged. Having just worked on an 18,000 square foot ICF house the process of constructing with them isn't really very open to easy replacement. I wonder if the walls were damaged bad enough to warrant anything more than some insulation (the styrofoam) patches and to call it a day.

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They should put one of those "severe tire damage" strips across the street from the exit ramp, so that if this happens again, the car will just get stuck before it hits the building.

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I've always been a bit surprised that they didn't put several large tree "planters" that are essentially steel barricades in front of the building at that location. 

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Norwood's One Rookwood getting first residents

Bowdeya Tweh, btweh@enquirer.com 3:06 p.m. EST March 2, 2015

 

Residents moving into new upscale apartments in Norwood are helping fulfill a vision established for a mixed-use development near Interstate 71.

 

The first residents started moving into apartments Monday at One Rookwood, a 127-unit apartment building at the Rookwood Exchange development. Construction crews are expected to complete work on rooms and other spaces at the building in April.

 

http://www.cincinnati.com/story/money/2015/03/02/one-rookwood-opens/24270419/

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Faux balconies with a lovely view of 1-71

B9316404349Z.1_20150302145316_000_GO9A37L0N.1-0.jpg


"It's just fate, as usual, keeping its bargain and screwing us in the fine print..." - John Crichton

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Are people just lazy and that's how they wind up in places like these? They can't be bothered to do some searching for something better? For this price range you have so many options and this is one of the worst of them. I just don't get it.

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But for slightly less investment they can just market them as "romeo and juliet balconies" and still charge the exact same amount per month since apparently people are clamoring for loud, zero-view, cheaply built apartments right now.

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Given what they started with, Rookwood Exchange turned into one of the worst mixed-use developments I've ever seen anywhere in my life. And I've seen quite a few.

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Does anyone have the numbers for how many housing units used to sit on this site and how many businesses?

 

With all the public money that had to go into it, will this really be beneficial financially to Norwood in the long run? It seems like it might be because of the office building, but I'm still not sure.

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Given what they started with, Rookwood Exchange turned into one of the worst mixed-use developments I've ever seen anywhere in my life. And I've seen quite a few.

 

I-71 now has that weird "Atlanta" vibe with midrises meeting the interstate at odd angles. 

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I agree it's kinda janked, especially the weird ass parking lot, but I still feel its better than the waste of space of the other rookwood phases. I feel every U shaped shopping center with a sea of parking, like rookwood and hyde park plaza, need to just build buildings in the parking where theres a couple of stories of under or above ground parking, with more retail on the bottom, and tons of residential/office on top. Does anyone think that would be a valid way to retrofit inner ring suburbs with shopping centers like this? Are there any examples elsewhere?

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Given what they started with, Rookwood Exchange turned into one of the worst mixed-use developments I've ever seen anywhere in my life. And I've seen quite a few.

 

I-71 now has that weird "Atlanta" vibe with midrises meeting the interstate at odd angles. 

 

Last time I was there I was reminded of a small scale Culver City just outside LA:

 

http://www.aaroads.com/california/images405/i-405_sb_exit_049_05.jpg

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Given what they started with, Rookwood Exchange turned into one of the worst mixed-use developments I've ever seen anywhere in my life. And I've seen quite a few.

 

I-71 now has that weird "Atlanta" vibe with midrises meeting the interstate at odd angles. 

 

I was thinking the same thing on my way to the Carhart store the other day

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Is the parking garage that faces I-71 finished? If so, shame on Norwood for approving that eyesore.

 

The whole thing as been a giveaway to the developers from the beginning. 

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Is the parking garage that faces I-71 finished? If so, shame on Norwood for approving that eyesore.

 

Yep.  And Norwood doesn't care because this was the only piece of Norwood east of I-71.  The ugly architecture and traffic are Oakley's problem now, unfortunately.

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Is the parking garage that faces I-71 finished? If so, shame on Norwood for approving that eyesore.

 

Yep.  And Norwood doesn't care because this was the only piece of Norwood east of I-71.  The ugly architecture and traffic are Oakley's problem now, unfortunately.

 

The way that restaurant at the corner of Edwards and I think Smith backs up to the corner with its dumpsters showing is an affront to all that is decent.  It's a disgusting intersection where a great streetscape could have existed.  You have to wonder if they did it on purpose. 

 

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^ It's easy to ignore since it's a typical suburban commercial outlot kind of typology that's so common you almost don't notice it.  Farther down Edwards the building that backs right up to the sidewalk is a total f-u to the street, especially because of this abomination of an entrance http://goo.gl/maps/0DFuE 

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Yeah.  At least they put some fake windows on it, but I honestly am suspicious that this was done to discourage redevelopment of Cincinnati's side of Edwards Rd.  If Norwood had instead insisted on a traditional urban layout that engages the sidewalk, Edwards could have been made into something pretty nice.  And yes those entrances off of Edwards are all pretty weird.  It's like they refused to do a single monster entrance and instead did a handful of tricky entrances. 

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I may not be traveling in the right areas but when I hear Cranley harp on the poor conditions of the roads in Cincinnati I largely disagree.  Being in Indianapolis quite a bit the roads are in much worse shape there.  Just take a trip up north and you will see the roads are even worse as winters are much harsher.  I wonder if people driving on Edwards Road to the interstate complain a lot and think it is Cincinnati when in all actuality it is Norwood? 

 

That right hand lane traveling towards 71 North is in bad shape, I do admit.  I wonder when they are going to fix that?

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^I've specifically told two people that that exit and that stretch of Edwards are Norwood after they used them as examples of Cincinnaties' so called "terrible road conditions." Which is hardly true. There are potholes, sure, but there always will be after a really cold winter. And they're not that common. I went up to Cleveland a couple weeks ago and the roads there were absolutely awful all over. I think people just love to complain about the roads. It's like complaining about the weather.

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Northbound Edwards is Cincinnati, southbound is Norwood, the border goes right down the middle.  The Cincinnati side is pretty bad, but Norwood in general has many worse streets. 

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I was told by someone in Norwood government that Cincinnati's snow plow drivers have only the vaguest idea where the city borders are (and generally don't care if they do) and as such Norwood can depend on getting many of its streets, including side streets, salted and plowed by Cincinnati trucks.

 

But the bigger issue is that this area was never master-planned.  Rookwood I & II, Rookwood Exchange, and the Lincoln Financial building across I-71 could have all been master planned and made into a real "downtown" centered around at least one new purpose-built overpass over I-71.  It could have had much better vehicular traffic patterns and real pedestrian activity centered around a square not unlike, say, Oakley Square.   

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