The candidates for Cincinnati City Council and Mayor have faced off in a number of debates and forums over the past several months. However, one forum being held tomorrow will be of particular interest to readers of UrbanCincy.
The Candidates’ Forum on Preservation will focus on historic preservation and related subjects, including policies on new development in historic neighborhoods. Fourteen city council candidates and both mayoral candidates will be in attendance and answering questions on these topics.
“The forum will discuss the role historic preservation plays in other important city issues, such as planning, neighborhood revitalization and economic development,” said Rob Nayor, Program Manager for Preservation Action.
Courtis Fuller of WLWT will serve as the host of the forum, which is being presented by Cincinnati Preservation Association, Cincinnati Preservation Collective, Over-the-Rhine Foundation, and Preservation Action. Candidates will not be ranked or endorsed based on their views. The event is meant to be informational and to allow the public to understand the candidates’ views on these issues.
The event will be held on Tuesday, September 19 at Memorial Hall, and will start promptly at 6:30 p.m. The venue is accessible via Metro routes 21 and 64 on Elm Street; routes 1, 6, and 20 on Central Parkway; the Cincinnati Bell Connector stop at 14th & Elm; and the Red Bike station at 14th & Elm. Parking is also available in the Washington Park Garage.
During the month of August, UrbanCincy covered several new developments and events in the city’s urban core. We also published two editorials that generated much response from our readers and the local community. Our top 5 most popular stories for August 2013 were:
A public-private partnership between the Northside Business Association (NBA) and local development company MC3 Group has resulted in a $200,000 grant from the City of Cincinnati to rehabilitate the Landman Building, located at 3929 Spring Grove Avenue. After an unrelated funding request fell through, funds were reappropriated through the city’s Neighborhood Business District Improvement Program (NBDIP) due to the project’s shovel ready condition.
The venture will redevelop the property into office space, potentially with street-level retail or entertainment. The building and its location are seen as a key to success in the “South Block” of Spring Grove Avenue and the recent investment that has been made in the area. MC3 has developed the surrounding properties, with a $675,000 renovation project taking place across the street. There are also plans for a new restaurant and bar next door.
“The proposed project will support the business district and the community as a whole,” stated MC3 Group in the proposal submitted to the Northside Business Association. “It will take a prominent troubled and obsolete property and repositioning it as an attractive and productive asset for the community.”
The shortlisted tenant for the space is Cincinnati State, who would potentially use the space as a sustainable research and development facility or as part of their renowned culinary program. The $680,000 project was also funded through $100,000 of cash or in-kind equity and $380,000 from the Northside Bank & Trust.
Northside Business Association treasurer Don Beimesche says that the neighborhood is especially thankful for the financial assistance that has taken the project off the drawing board and into reality.
“Without the financial assistance from the City of Cincinnati, the Landman Building would remain a vacant eyesore between two renovated buildings at the gateway to the Northside Business District,” Beimesche concluded.
City Council is expected to vote today on whether to approve $64 million in bonds toward funding the Cincinnati Streetcar. Providing this local funding greatly increases the likelihood of receiving federal funding for the remainder of the cost of the project. Cincinnati was passed up in the first round of TIGER funding due to a lack of local financial support. Several additional federal funding sources are available, including one specifically targeted at urban circulator projects such as streetcars.
On April 19, Council voted to support $2.6 million of funding to keep the project moving forward. Council members Quinlivan, Cole, Qualls, Thomas, Berding, and Bortz voted in favor of the funding in April, and are expected to also approve the bond issue today.
Twenty-nine citizens spoke in favor of the Streetcar project at the April 19 council meeting, while only two spoke against it. This overwhelming community support certainly played a role in council’s decision. To ensure council continues to support the Streetcar and pass today’s critical bond issue, please attend today’s session if you are able and register to speak in favor of the project.
Today’s meeting will begin at 2:30 at City Hall. To show your support of the Streetcar, show up 15 minutes early to fill out a card to speak at the meeting. Alternatively, you can e-mail your comments to City Council.
Get live updates from today’s council meeting by following the #CincyStreetcarVote tag on Twitter.