While city leaders would prefer to have the construction of the $400 million Horseshoe Casino Cincinnati further along, many are pleased with its current breakneck pace of work.

The development is beginning to fill up the notorious 22-acre Broadway Commons site that Jim Tarbell (D) had once envisioned to become the home of the Cincinnati Reds. The Reds eventually landed on the riverfront at the Great American Ball Park, and Broadway Commons continued to sit underutilized as a crumbling surface parking lot.

Developers of the new casino have thus far exceeded minority inclusion goals, and appear to be satisfying the desires of the surrounding community. Some of those efforts include not building a hotel on-site for the time being, and facing restaurants out towards the street instead of inward towards the casino floor.

The City of Cincinnati has been working with Bridging Broadway to ensure that the development leverages the best possible outcome for historic Over-the-Rhine, Pendleton and central business district. Recent efforts by city leaders include the approval of $27 million for streetscape enhancements in the immediate vicinity of the new casino.

Published author and UrbanCincy photographer Jake Mecklenborg visited the site in recent weeks in order to provide readers with an exclusive look at the progress taking place to transform one of the urban core’s most beleaguered sites into a vibrant destination expected to attract six million visitors annually.