Author Topic: Cincinnati: State of Downtown  (Read 17682 times)

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Offline IAGuy39

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Re: Cincinnati: State of Downtown
« Reply #1170 on: July 17, 2018, 12:09:23 PM »
Cincinnati is definitely more of a corporate town than Nashville or Austin. I'd much rather live in Cincinnati but it's easy to see them and say "How are they doing it?". Well, the popularity of country music is the big one of course which they built the tourism around.

Cincinnati will probably have a different type of tourism because there is only so much country music to go around and Austin and Nashville have a huge chunk of that. Cincinnati could probably do better on a lot of things and have PromoWest I think would have helped the music scene but would it have caused spin-off? I doubt that.

If the people behind the current music scene can keep growing it then we will get more of that but it won't be Austin or Nashville. The best thing that could happen for Cincinnati is to bring in as much jobs downtown as possible while at the same time pushing for smart growth and TOD growth, build out BRT lines and re-do metro. But currently our mayor doesn't want any of that and all he cares about is pleasing his people and its a massive hindrance to growth whether people want to believe it or not.

And I don't think the Mayor of Nashville was anti-everything city like Cranley. She actually proposed the massive mass transit proposal in Nashville.

Offline edale

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Re: Cincinnati: State of Downtown
« Reply #1171 on: July 17, 2018, 12:12:31 PM »
Because our Mayor sucks, and is completely unable or unwilling to articulate why investment in a strong urban core benefits the region and the neighborhoods.

Nah, you can't blame decades of decline on Cranley, as easy and tempting as it may be. The issue of why some cities decline while others thrive is so complicated and requires such a comprehensive understanding of municipal history and economics. It really can't be explained in a single message board post.

Offline jmecklenborg

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Re: Cincinnati: State of Downtown
« Reply #1172 on: July 17, 2018, 12:31:47 PM »
Mayor Barry didn't come up with the transit plan.  Her handlers -- i.e. the blue bloods that put her in power -- made her push their plan. 

Nashville is still significantly smaller than Cincinnati and at its current rate of growth won't even up for another ten years. 

Offline taestell

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Re: Cincinnati: State of Downtown
« Reply #1173 on: July 17, 2018, 12:46:30 PM »
Because our Mayor sucks, and is completely unable or unwilling to articulate why investment in a strong urban core benefits the region and the neighborhoods.

Nah, you can't blame decades of decline on Cranley, as easy and tempting as it may be. The issue of why some cities decline while others thrive is so complicated and requires such a comprehensive understanding of municipal history and economics. It really can't be explained in a single message board post.

Much of the boom that is happening in American cities can not be attributed to the actions of any particular city's Mayor or City Council. Almost all mid to large sized American cities are experiencing growth right now. However, the actions of the local government act to either step on the gas or step on the brakes.

Right now, many of our peer cities are stepping on the gas: improving public transit, adding urban circulators, adding bike lanes, implementing pro-growth urban policies and form-based zoning codes. Right now Cincinnati is stepping on the brakes: "punishing" OTR by raising parking meter rates to parking garage levels in an effort to wring out as much money as possible from the neighborhood, intentionally crippling the streetcar, blocking the implementation of our bike plan, laying down roadblocks for downtown developments, constantly telling other neighborhoods that "growth in downtown and OTR hurts your neighborhood!" in order to perpetuate our So Cincinnati anti-downtown attitude, borrowing hundreds of millions of dollars for new interchanges and road repaving instead of investing in downtown, etc.

Cranley is definitely not the only anti-urban mayor that Cincinnati ever had. However, what makes Cranley uniquely bad is that in a time when cities all across America are growing and nearly all of our peer cities are stepping on the gas, we are stepping on the brakes.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2018, 12:57:47 PM by taestell »

Offline GCrites80s

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Re: Cincinnati: State of Downtown
« Reply #1174 on: July 17, 2018, 12:49:30 PM »
The suburb worshipping in the Cincy metro really causes a lot of trouble.

Offline edale

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Re: Cincinnati: State of Downtown
« Reply #1175 on: July 17, 2018, 01:25:23 PM »
Cranley does no favors to downtown, but he is not the reason Cincinnati isn't performing as well as Austin or Nashville. First of all, almost no cities are performing as well as those two are right now. They're going through extreme periods of growth- the likes of which Cincinnati hasn't seen since its very early days. Is Nashville booming because of bike lanes? It doesn't have any transit to speak of, and neither does Austin. Sure, downtown Cincinnati should be growing at a faster clip, and the issues with the streetcar should have been ironed out long ago (at least the quick fix ones, though I think there are some big flaws with the design of the system, too). But these things are not the reason for the under-performance of the region.

Nashville struck gold with its music tourism industry. It became a hot place for people from the coasts, especially creative types, to relocate to. Because of this, it got an incredible amount of buzz and publicity, which only made its tourism industry further grow. Austin was a sleepy, weird alternative to the other big Texas cities and all of a sudden took off to become a nascent giant. Texas as a state is growing extremely fast, and Austin has been able to capture, if not drive, a lot of that growth. They had some success stories with tech companies and Whole Foods, and like Columbus, they have the huge state university + state capital thing going for it. But I don't think there was one single factor that led to Austin's seemingly over night success. I think Austin, Nashville, Charlotte, Atlanta, Phoenix, etc. are growing fast primarily due to the large population shifts that have been underway in this country for a very long time. People move to the South and West for cheap housing, better weather, and a new start. Austin and Nashville just happen to be the boomtowns de jour. In earlier decades it was Dallas and Atlanta. These cities are all doing some great things, but they didn't magically create growth, just like Cincinnati can't.

Last point. As far as stifling downtown development projects, I think the story of the most recent downtown tower projects speaks way more to the reality of the situation than the Cranley boogeyman theories. Skyhouse had to walk away from their project because they just couldn't get the development to pencil out. 4th and Race is having a hell of a time getting built because the market economics just aren't favorable here. Whether it's high labor costs, high material costs, conservative lenders, low expected rents...whatever, Cincinnati appears to be a challenging market for high rise development. A project that receives $5.5 million in city subsidy and STILL can't get off the ground (4th and Race) is a bad sign. I don't fault Cranley for not throwing insane amount of subsidy at these projects, IF he is supportive of offering smaller subsidies to a greater range of projects. When I think about the state of the city now, you have neighborhoods that are finally starting to turn around in a meaningful way. Walnut Hills, Madisonville, Westwood, College Hill, hell, even Evanston are all showing new signs of life. OTR continues to redevelop at a pretty fast pace, too. The city needs more than just downtown to be stable if it wants to grow, and I think we are finally seeing that. I would love to see Cranley get out of the way more. Fix the low hanging streetcar issues. Stop spending money on stupid shit like interchanges no one needs or wants. Implement a sensible parking reform for basin neighborhoods. But I really don't see him being the total hindrance to Cincinnati becoming Nashville and Austin style boomtowns.

Offline jjakucyk

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Re: Cincinnati: State of Downtown
« Reply #1176 on: July 17, 2018, 01:35:04 PM »
People move to those cities because people are moving to those cities.  Growth begets growth, because so much of our economy is based on the construction industry.  It's a self-reinforcing cycle, until it isn't. 

Offline IAGuy39

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Re: Cincinnati: State of Downtown
« Reply #1177 on: July 17, 2018, 02:05:35 PM »
^I don't think Cranley stifled any potential projects, etc. and maybe they wouldn't have helped otherwise but boy he sure could help out on a few things like the streetcar, Form based codes, etc. which would really help get more development moving and possibly move in some of the out of town investors or flippers and do some more work.  Who knows how much different it could of been if we fixed teh streetcar from the get go, completed the bike lane plans, had the Liberty Street Road Diet, enacted form based codes, literally everything that every other city in this country has done which are simple and hardly cost anything, we would be so much further ahead, IMO.

All that said, I think people do need to understand that Cincinnati hit a deep hole like the Cleveland's, Detroit, Buffalo, etc. (though not as deep, it belongs in that grouping on the next tier down). Cincinnati has bounced back quicker than those cities too but it's conservative culture of no taxes except for cops and firefighters is starting to bite our ass in the year 2018. List of cities with highest population declines from peak:

St. Louis, Missouri    856,796    856,796    1950    319,294    537,502    62.7%
Detroit, Michigan    1,849,568    1,849,568    1950    713,777    1,135,791    61.4%
Youngstown, Ohio    168,330    170,002    1930    66,982    103,020    60.6%
Cleveland, Ohio    914,808    914,808    1950    396,815    517,993    56.6%
Gary, Indiana    133,911    178,320    1960    80,294    98,026    55%
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania    676,806    676,806    1950    305,704    371,102    54.8%
Buffalo, New York    580,132    580,132    1950    270,240    309,892    53.4%
Niagara Falls, New York    90,872    102,394    1960    50,194    52,200    51%
Flint, Michigan    163,413    196,940    1960    102,434    94,506    48%
Scranton, Pennsylvania    125,536    143,333    1930    76,089    67,244    46.9%
Dayton, Ohio    243,872    262,332    1960    141,527    120,805    46.1%
Cincinnati, Ohio    503,998    503,998    1950    296,943    207,055    41.1%
New Orleans, Louisiana**    570,445    627,525    1960    384,320    243,205    38.8%
Utica, New York    100,489    101,740    1930    62,235    39,505    38.8%
Camden, New Jersey    124,555    124,555    1950    77,344    47,211    37.9%
« Last Edit: July 17, 2018, 02:09:10 PM by IAGuy39 »

Offline Brutus_buckeye

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Re: Cincinnati: State of Downtown
« Reply #1178 on: July 17, 2018, 02:15:46 PM »
If we wanna go into building who have been vacant and left basically abandon, look at 312 Race Street. Its the old Pogue warehouse building, prime real estate in the front of the city. Drury hotel group bought the building in 2003!. There is a 30 year tax abatement on the building, not sure how or why. 15 years have gone by since they purchased the building and nothing has been done. Its a shame because the building either needs to come down, or reworked.

Also attached I found an old proposal for the site that carries the Drury name.

I have never seen this before. This would be a great location for such a hotel or any hotel. Closest to the stadium and the easiest access to the highways for people coming and going from downtown. I am surprised nothing has come to fruition on this site.

Offline IAGuy39

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Re: Cincinnati: State of Downtown
« Reply #1179 on: July 17, 2018, 02:21:30 PM »
Here are a couple interesting things to look at too:

Historical Nashville Population:

1810   1,100      
1820   3,410      210.0%
1830   5,566      63.2%
1840   6,929      24.5%
1850   10,165      46.7%
1860   16,988      67.1%
1870   25,865      52.3%
1880   43,350      67.6%
1890   76,168      75.7%
1900   80,865      6.2%
1910   110,364      36.5%
1920   118,342      7.2%
1930   153,866      30.0%
1940   167,402      8.8%
1950   174,307      4.1%
1960   170,874      −2.0%
1970   448,003      162.2%
1980   477,811      6.7%
1990   510,784      6.9%
2000   569,891      11.6%
2010   626,681      10.0%
Est. 2017   691,243   [3]   10.3%

Historial Austin Population:

1850   629      
1860   3,494      455.5%
1870   4,428      26.7%
1880   11,013      148.7%
1890   14,575      32.3%
1900   22,258      52.7%
1910   29,860      34.2%
1920   34,876      16.8%
1930   53,120      52.3%
1940   87,930      65.5%
1950   132,459      50.6%
1960   186,545      40.8%
1970   253,539      35.9%
1980   345,890      36.4%
1990   465,622      34.6%
2000   656,562      41.0%
2010   790,390      20.4%
Est. 2017   950,715   [94]   20.3

Historical Cincinnati Population:

1800   850      
1810   2,540      198.8%
1820   9,642      279.6%
1830   24,831      157.5%
1840   46,338      86.6%
1850   115,435      149.1%
1860   161,044      39.5%
1870   216,239      34.3%
1880   255,139      18.0%
1890   296,908      16.4%
1900   325,902      9.8%
1910   363,591      11.6%
1920   401,247      10.4%
1930   451,160      12.4%
1940   455,610      1.0%
1950   503,998      10.6%
1960   502,550      −0.3%
1970   452,525      −10.0%
1980   385,460      −14.8%
1990   364,040      −5.6%
2000   331,285      −9.0%
2010   296,945      −10.4%
Est. 2017   301,301   [58]   1.5%

Offline taestell

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Re: Cincinnati: State of Downtown
« Reply #1180 on: July 17, 2018, 02:21:53 PM »
I don't think Cranley stifled any potential projects

Cranley pulled the plug on the Fourth & Race project because it was going to be built by an out-of-town developer (Flaherty & Collins). He got 3CDC involved in order to downsize Flaherty & Collins' role in the development. Then he pushed forward the Court & Walnut development which ate up most of the TIF funding that had been earmarked for Fourth & Race.

Offline IAGuy39

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Re: Cincinnati: State of Downtown
« Reply #1181 on: July 17, 2018, 02:26:02 PM »
I don't think Cranley stifled any potential projects

Cranley pulled the plug on the Fourth & Race project because it was going to be built by an out-of-town developer (Flaherty & Collins). He got 3CDC involved in order to downsize Flaherty & Collins' role in the development. Then he pushed forward the Court & Walnut development which ate up most of the TIF funding that had been earmarked for Fourth & Race.

I think he pulled out of a $12 million forgiveable loan for a $5.5 million one?  I didn't think that it was going to be any TIF on that, or maybe that's what you mean with the loan?

Offline jmblec2

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Re: Cincinnati: State of Downtown
« Reply #1182 on: July 17, 2018, 02:45:49 PM »
I don't think Cranley stifled any potential projects

Cranley pulled the plug on the Fourth & Race project because it was going to be built by an out-of-town developer (Flaherty & Collins). He got 3CDC involved in order to downsize Flaherty & Collins' role in the development. Then he pushed forward the Court & Walnut development which ate up most of the TIF funding that had been earmarked for Fourth & Race.

Blessing in disguise IMO. We would have been stuck with a small grocery store operated by a yet to be named company, which was only required to be in business for 5 years. Instead we get a real grocery store operated by a for profit entity that won't walk away if things are going great after 5 years, in a much more centralized location and directly on the street car route. Much better for downtowns long term growth. 

Offline jmecklenborg

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Re: Cincinnati: State of Downtown
« Reply #1183 on: July 17, 2018, 02:53:54 PM »
Blessing in disguise IMO. We would have been stuck with a small grocery store operated by a yet to be named company, which was only required to be in business for 5 years. Instead we get a real grocery store operated by a for profit entity that won't walk away if things are going great after 5 years, in a much more centralized location and directly on the street car route. Much better for downtowns long term growth. 

A real-life example of what you describe happened ten years ago in Columbus at the South Campus Gateway.  A small grocery store called "Sunflower" or something like that opened with the rest of the development but closed within 2 years.  The nearby Kroger was a dump but it was rebuilt around 2010. 

Offline taestell

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Re: Cincinnati: State of Downtown
« Reply #1184 on: July 17, 2018, 03:12:51 PM »
The Fourth and Race "grocery store" would have been a glorified convenience store, much like the one that opened at The Banks. Nevertheless, it would have still been a place for downtown residents to get some basic necessities, fresh produce, etc. I'm glad the Kroger development is moving forward, of course, but that's not going to actually open until late 2019.

Offline jmblec2

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Re: Cincinnati: State of Downtown
« Reply #1185 on: July 17, 2018, 04:12:17 PM »
The Fourth and Race "grocery store" would have been a glorified convenience store, much like the one that opened at The Banks. Nevertheless, it would have still been a place for downtown residents to get some basic necessities, fresh produce, etc. I'm glad the Kroger development is moving forward, of course, but that's not going to actually open until late 2019.

Not really. The store at the banks is 1,500 sq. The actual grocery store at fourth and race was proposed to 15,000sq.