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Cincinnati: Fountain Square: Development and News

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This is kind of Fountain Square-esque...

Glad to see they are moving, their old place didn't really give off a hip-happening image!

 

Cincinnati CVB changes name, moves headquarters

Cincinnati Business Courier - 9:59 AM EDT Wednesday

 

The Greater Cincinnati Convention & Visitors Bureau is moving to the center of downtown and changing its name to identify with the Cincinnati USA regional brand.

 

The bureau, according to an e-mail from President and CEO Dan Lincoln, will now be known as the Cincinnati USA Convention & Visitors Bureau. Its communications and marketing materials will incorporate the new name and logo.

 

The organization also has moved from its 15-year home on West Sixth Street to a new headquarters at 525 Vine St., overlooking Fountain Square, Lincoln said in the e-mail. Its phone numbers and e-mail addresses won't change.

 

The Cincinnati USA Convention & Visitors Bureau promotes the Greater Cincinnati area as a convention and leisure destination, booking conventions and other special events.

 

http://cincinnati.bizjournals.com/cincinnati/stories/2006/10/02/daily28.html

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When is the parking garage going to "change?"  Meaning, when are they going to put that color **** on it.


"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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They never said the restaurants would be open, just the square. The restaurants are actually NOT part of the Fountain Square project. They're a separate 5/3rd project that has yet to begin. Just like the Westin has their own project as well as 525 Vine. I'm not sure what the hold up is with 5/3rd though, but they were supposed to begin construction on the 5/3rd facade in late September. Expect the entire north portion of the square to NOT be completed due to the construction activities on the 5/3rd low building. (the one with Rock Bottom in it) Either way, the rest of the square and garage look great so far.

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From what I understand, the restaurants are still negotiating leases with 5/3rd.  They've signed letters of intent, but haven't signed a lease agreement.  Look for announcements in the coming weeks.

 

Expect the square to be completed in stages, with all of the restaurants open in the Spring.

 

 

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Not enough liquor licenses for Square

Cincinnati over state limit for permits per capita; options under review

 

BY DAN KLEPAL | ENQUIRER STAFF WRITER

 

At least a half-dozen business owners are interested in opening nightclubs or restaurants in and around the new Fountain Square, but they can't get liquor licenses from the state.

 

Just two weeks before the $43 million Fountain Square project opens - one that everyone agrees is crucial for downtown Cincinnati's revitalization - city officials are scrambling to find a solution to the problem: Cincinnati is over its quota for liquor licenses.

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So apparently this is what's holding up announcement of Fountain Square tenants!  This is so incredibly stupid.  It makes absolutely no sense at all to apportion liquor licenses in a center city by city population.  Cincinnati's population is relatively small compared to the region.  A large number of the people who come to Cincinnati bars and nightclubs using these D5 licenses don't live in the city.  This will be especially true of Fountain Square. 

 

At least it appears there is a backup plan, this economic development designation that allows transfer of licenses from surrounding communities.  But it shouldn't have to be a backup, the number of licenses shouldn't be so closely tied to city population in the first place.  And there's also the problem of a good chunk of the surrounding cities being in another state.  You can't transfer licenses from there, but those folks will make it up to the Fountain Square establishments. 

 

And why is the community entertainment district license increase based on the acreage of the district?  That so obviously caters to, and encourages, huge sprawled out Union Center-type developments.  I don't know how many bar and club districts are spread out like that, especially when they will invariably involving drinking, then driving to the next establishment.

 

We are looking at months of delays for this.  Hopefully, 3CDC can talk them in to building out before they have the license in hand. So, so painfully stupid.

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This is turning into a mess.  Why didn't anyone anticipate the liquor license issue many montha ago?  So, here is what is going to happen.  The Square will open.  The people will come and they will see a partially finished Square that looks not all that different to the average person than the last Square.  They are going to get in their cars and never come back.  Why couldn't they set a realistic opening date when all issues are resolved and tenants open for business.  Why the rush job - once again.

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Boy people are negative here.  Trip hazzard lawsuits?

 

The people that will never come downtowen again just b/c it is not complete are not the people that would support downtown anyway.

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Everyone needs to relax, this is not that big of a deal, it happens all the time all over the State.  Most businesses don't end up getting a "new" liquor license anyway, they usyually buy an existing one from someone going out of business, and we all know how restaurants turn over.  Also, this is really no one's fault.  Especially not 3CDC or the City, the business owners are the ones who will apply for liquor licenses and hold them.  The laws are very strict, 3CDC could not for example buy up a bunch and hold them for future use to dole out to new businesses around the square.

 

Also, that trip hazard idea is ridiculous.  Who ever got sued for someone tripping over a step anyway?

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If 3CDC waits to open until "all the issues are resolved" like some have suggested, then don't expect the square to fully open until at least next July. That's when the 5/3rd building is projected to be complete, and that's assumingn no delays along the way which we have already seen are possible. I don't know about you, but I can't wait to each lunch there in a couple weeks. Even if it's only 80% complete. Not to mention the parking being available again. Can't come soon enough if you ask me.

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Maybe its me being a Nyer but challenges and holdups happen all the time.  Its not a big deal. As for lawsuits for the steps, again, if a city has to wory about that than our society is in deep trouble.

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>Most businesses don't end up getting a "new" liquor license anyway, they usyually buy an existing one from someone going out of business, and we all know how restaurants turn over.

 

I know in some cities like Cambridge, MA they go for $2 million and as a result that city only has 3 or 4 real corner bars left.  For someone who started a corner bar 30 years ago, it's a bonanza and they can build a mansion on the beach. 

 

This brings up the larger issue of the ridiculousness of alcohol regulations in this country.  Thanks to MADD you can have 10 kids out of wedlock by age 21 legally but you can't have a damn glass of beer.  You can join the army, operate million dollar pieces of equipment and shoot at people and get shot at, but you can't have a beer.  Thanks to them, one of my uncles recently got a DUI at a campground just for putting the keys in his parked car in order to play the radio.  Thanks to MADD live music in America has been destroyed because without the revenue from age 18-20 beer sales running a festival or music venue is a shaky proposition.  Thanks to Prohibition the 150 saloons that once lined Vine St. alone from the river to the base of the hill are long gone.   

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This whole liquor license thing is REDICULOUS!!!  I didn't know we were still living in the times of prohibition?!?!?!  Its time for Ohio to get with the times!!! :drunk: :drunk: :drunk:

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Also, that trip hazard idea is ridiculous.  Who ever got sued for someone tripping over a step anyway?

... it happens a lot unfortunately.  Shorter steps do cause trips more often, but usually when it is just one or two steps, and people don't see them.  These should work ok.  Actually, I think they do these shallow long steps because horses will traverse them easily.

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This country is pretty wacky about alchohol.  Germany and France really don't have any enforced underage drinking laws and as a result they have almost zero binge drinking deaths among youths. 

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Is Fountain Square ready?

Fountain to flow, pavers in place; ceremony set despite some issues

BY JON NEWBERRY | ENQUIRER STAFF WRITER

 

Though pallets piled with granite slabs indicate much work yet to be done on Fountain Square a week before its Oct. 14 reopening, the kickoff celebration will proceed on schedule, according to the people running the show.

 

Cincinnati Center City Development Corp. (3CDC) spokesman Kevin Armstrong said some features of the city's central plaza were never planned to be ready for next Saturday's event.

 

http://news.enquirer.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20061007/BIZ01/610070355

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More liquor permits likely

City could designate Fountain Square an entertainment district

BY DAN KLEPAL | ENQUIRER STAFF WRITER

 

Cincinnati soon will have a process in place for establishing entertainment districts around the city, and scoring the liquor permits that come with that designation.

 

The city is over its state allocation for so-called D5 liquor permits coveted by nightclubs and restaurants. D5 permits allow full sale of beer and liquor.

 

http://news.enquirer.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20061010/NEWS01/610100367

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A perfect "wait and see" example before our media starts complaining. Was there any doubt that we would get enough licenses down there? Not in my mind. Sometimes I wish the first reaction of this city, and many of the residents, was not negative. There will be plenty of nightlife, restaurants, and licenses in the heart of our city. It's a process that takes time. People need to let things run their course. This article begins to put things back in perspective. I like the title especially.

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A perfect "wait and see" example before our media starts complaining. Was there any doubt that we would get enough licenses down there? Not in my mind. Sometimes I wish the first reaction of this city, and many of the residents, was not negative. There will be plenty of nightlife, restaurants, and licenses in the heart of our city. It's a process that takes time. People need to let things run their course. This article begins to put things back in perspective. I like the title especially.

 

Fountain Square may have never been in doubt in terms of getting the needed liquor licenses, but many other areas around the city are in great doubt...and it is strangling the life of those new projects (see McMillan Park/Calhoun St).

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A perfect "wait and see" example before our media starts complaining. Was there any doubt that we would get enough licenses down there? Not in my mind. Sometimes I wish the first reaction of this city, and many of the residents, was not negative. There will be plenty of nightlife, restaurants, and licenses in the heart of our city. It's a process that takes time. People need to let things run their course. This article begins to put things back in perspective. I like the title especially.

 

Fountain Square may have never been in doubt in terms of getting the needed liquor licenses, but many other areas around the city are in great doubt...and it is strangling the life of those new projects (see McMillan Park/Calhoun St).

 

Please elaborate

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^Calhoun Marketplace has been completed for some time.....many have criticized CHCRUC for not filling the retail spaces quickly enough...others have said that the area can't handle new businesses.  The fact of the matter is that Salsaritas is waiting to open for their liqour license, and there is rumor of a BW3's wanting to open, but they will not sign a lease until a liquor license is secured.  This is a major problem for any new development...often times they wait on signed leases before construction begins...if retailers are waiting on licenses to sign leases then so are the projects.  :|

 

FS is unique because it has the sex appeal neccessary to get things expedited through the process where the other projects do not.

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Microbreweries may be the answer.  ORC 4303.021 allows for a special A-1-A liquor license that give you all the rights of the D-5 license (the standard bar license) but the state cannot limit the number allowed in a city.  The only caveat is that you must brew onsite.  This can also work if you have a winery that makes wine on site.  the permit is a little more per year 3900 instead of 2400 but to get a liquor license you generally have to spend about 30-40k.

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^Calhoun Marketplace has been completed for some time.....many have criticized CHCRUC for not filling the retail spaces quickly enough...others have said that the area can't handle new businesses.  The fact of the matter is that Salsaritas is waiting to open for their liqour license, and there is rumor of a BW3's wanting to open, but they will not sign a lease until a liquor license is secured.  This is a major problem for any new development...often times they wait on signed leases before construction begins...if retailers are waiting on licenses to sign leases then so are the projects.  :|

 

FS is unique because it has the sex appeal neccessary to get things expedited through the process where the other projects do not.

Good point but I have to admit Calhoun looks extremely tacky and embarassing right now. I can't wait until it's all done and actually looks cohesive. Calhoun marketplace needs more context. I'd love to see a bw3s there though. Theres a waiting list for UP above the retail space (I called because I was interested) so atleast the housing is being used and is very in demand.

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Fountain Square's makeover

Will the city's centerpiece bring more people downtown?

BY JON NEWBERRY | ENQUIRER STAFF WRITER

 

Video Tour:  http://news.enquirer.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20061011/NEWS01/310110001

 

Two years before the Genius of Water was packed off to temporary exile at the Cincinnati Art Museum, civic leaders embraced a vision of a new Fountain Square. The goal was to create a place that would draw all kinds of people - young and old; black and white; rich, poor and middle class; residents, office workers, shoppers and out-of-towners - back to the heart of Cincinnati.

 

The problem identified by urban development consultant John Alschuler was that Cincinnati had been building lots of expensive "things" - stadiums, museums and convention and arts centers - but the buildings hadn't done anything to revive downtown.

 

http://news.enquirer.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20061011/BIZ01/610110340

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New square is catalyst

Renovation has produced $50M of private development

The renovation of Fountain Square has already spurred nearly $50 million of private development in the blocks surrounding the downtown plaza. That's according to 3CDC - Cincinnati Center City Development Corp. - the nonprofit development agency managing the square. Those private investments include:

FIFTH THIRD BANK

 

Fifth Third Bank in June announced a $16.5 million renovation of its five-story office, retail and parking complex adjacent to the north end of Fountain Square.

 

The project, scheduled for next year, includes renovated retail space fronting on the square and a back-lit glass curtain covering the four upper floors of the building on the square's north side. No tenants have been announced.

 

http://news.enquirer.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20061012/BIZ01/610120377/1076/BIZ

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Does anyone know what he is talking about with these two developments ("the north side of Sixth Street east of Walnut Street, where Bella and Maisonette restaurants used to operate; and the former Crowne Plaza/Terrace Hilton hotel on Sixth Street between Vine and Race.")?  Is this just speculation or is there something specific in the works?

 

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FS has a bright colorful board lit up, plants and flowers in place, and water in the fountain ... things are looking good!

 

Who is going to the opening ceremony? I'll be there, anyone want to meet up?

 

Who in their right mind would miss Hi-Tek for FREE and fireworks in the freakin center of our city!?

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I was just checking out the webcam and they're installing the theatrical lighting right now. 1 more day to go and this place will be rockin. Have you seen how many people they have working down there during the day? It's borderline chaos, but I guess it's getting the job done in time. Even if the north part of the square won't be finished, I can't wait.

 

By the way, did anyone see the Ice Rink rendering the other day on the front page of the Enquirer? That'll be up within a month along with the trees. Very exciting.

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Who is going to the opening ceremony? I'll be there, anyone want to meet up?

 

Who in their right mind would miss Hi-Tek for FREE and fireworks in the freakin center of our city!?

 

I'll be going down around 5pm or so, and be there the rest of the night.  You're damn right about the Talib Kwali, Hi-Tek, and Ok Go performances....that will be a great urban experience!!!!  Young urban artists combined with the great urban setting with fireworks...and its all FREE!!!!!  That sounds like a damn good time!!!

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Downtown's screen dream

'Sky's the limit' for video board at Fountain Square

BY JOHN KIESEWETTER | ENQUIRER STAFF WRITER

 

Link:  Street closings for event  http://news.enquirer.com/assets/AB453831013.PDF

 

 

Bill Donabedian has big dreams for the big screen overlooking Fountain Square.

 

"The sky's the limit," he says about the 24-foot by 42-foot video screen atop Macy's. "We can put on it something interesting about the city, its history or its future."

 

Or a sold-out Bengals game.

 

Or a couple of guys playing Madden NFL '07 on Xbox.

 

http://news.enquirer.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20061013/NEWS01/610130394

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Livelier Square envisioned

New managers plan for multiple events

BY JON NEWBERRY | ENQUIRER STAFF WRITER

 

When the renovated Fountain Square reopens Saturday, it resumes its role as the symbolic and functional heart of Cincinnati, but with a significant difference - it's now run by a private organization.

 

Fountain Square Management Group LLC was formed this year by 3CDC (Cincinnati Center City Development Corp.), the nonprofit agency that manages the square under a long-term contract.

 

http://news.enquirer.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20061013/NEWS01/610130384

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Sunday's Bengals-Tampa Bay Buccaneers game will be shown on the board, he says.

 

"If the Bengals are away, we'll show it. If the Bengals are sold out, we'll show it," Donabedian says. Bengals and Reds highlights films also might be seen someday on the big board, he says.

 

So how much of the big TV will be devoted to sports?

 

"The World Cup showed that people love to get together and watch big sporting events," he says. "Will it be 10 percent? Or 20 percent? We have no idea. We're going to mix it up."

 

Donabedian talks about having Mayor Mark Mallory play Madden '07 against Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl before the Bengals-Steelers rematch here on Dec. 31.

 

He's looked into getting "WKRP in Cincinnati," the 1978-82 Gary Sandy sitcom about a struggling rock 'n' roll station. (Perhaps he can get the infamous "turkey drop" episode to play when the skating rink opens the day after Thanksgiving.)

 

That's all just absolutely fantastic.  And remember, Brutus Buckeye suggested the Bengals game thing here over a month ago!

 

http://www.urbanohio.com/forum2/index.php?topic=3275.msg122810#msg122810

 

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Fountain Square's extreme makeover

Rolling re-opening result of 'aggressive schedule'

 

By Greg Paeth

Post staff reporter

 

Workers were scrambling Thursday to complete as much work as they could on Fountain Square before Saturday's re-opening festivities. Robbie Dean, avove, applied caulk to a granite wall beside a walkway on the square. At left, Tom Harmeyer, left, and John Hsu of Elex Inc. electrical contractors worked on wiring for the square's lighting at an electrical box at Fifth and Walnut streets.

 

Maybe the 19th-century Genius of Water centerpiece of the Tyler Davidson Fountain is smart enough to offer some time-saving tips on 21st century construction techniques.

 

http://news.cincypost.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20061013/NEWS01/610130356

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