Fountain Square Updates

Well the finished Fountain Square is steadily progressing. I must say that the whole Fountain Square District is really starting to look quite nice. McCormick & Schmick’s has been open for several weeks now and looks fantastic; and Boi Na Braza is making steady progress and has now installed new awnings on the outside of the building.

The square itself is almost near completion as well. The plaza is almost complete, with just a small section just north of the fountain to be complete. This will most likely be done/open to the public once the new facade is complete along the lower 5/3 building, as well as, the construction of Via Vite. Via Vite has the opportunity to be one of the GREAT places to dine in Cincinnati! The location is second to none, and the quality of food potentially fabulous.

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Much criticism has been made thus far about the funding and quality of work that has been done on Fountain Square. I contend that this is money well spent. Not too many communities across the nation have a public space the improvements made to the public plaza are tremendous improvements over the previous concrete fallout plaza of sorts that existed before. There has been much spin-off investment and the surrounding blocks are really coming to life. When you look at as great as Fountain Square, and an investment you want to see what your return on investment is when all is said and done.

The Fountain Square District has seen the openings of several new restaurants, new residential is moving in at several different projects around the square, new retailers have opened and announced openings and the city has put up has heard the announcements and money to improve the streetscaping around the square.

In my eyes, it sounds like $42 million went a long way towards the revitalization efforts of downtown!

By Randy A. Simes

Randy is an award-winning urban planner who founded UrbanCincy in May 2007. He grew up on Cincinnati’s west side in Covedale, and graduated from the University of Cincinnati’s nationally acclaimed School of Planning in June 2009. In addition to maintaining ownership and serving as the managing editor for UrbanCincy, Randy has worked professionally as a planning consultant throughout the United States, Korea and the Middle East. After brief stints in Atlanta and Chicago, he currently lives in the Daechi neighborhood of Seoul’s Gangnam district.