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Thread: Banks project to be open by end of 2009

  1. #31
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    Re: Banks project to be open by end of 2009

    http://www.southbankpartners.com/fla...nkVideo_1.html

    Seems like the N. Ky. side of the river isn't wasting much time. Hopefully Cincinnati can get on the ball and surprise us, then each side of the river could be pretty neat. Seems like a big if considering the past though.

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  3. #32
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    Re: Banks project to be open by end of 2009

    I'll be honest with you... Covington's riverfront area doesn't need much improvement. Cincinnati on the other hand...
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  4. #33
    Porkchop Sandwiches DoogMinAmo's Avatar
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    Re: Banks project to be open by end of 2009

    More news:
    http://news.enquirer.com/apps/pbcs.d...382/1077/COL02

    Group OKs Banks plan
    BY JESSICA BROWN | JLBROWN@ENQUIRER.COM
    E-mail | Print | digg us! | del.icio.us!


    Cincinnati's Planning Commission on Thursday night recommended approval of a Banks riverfront development that will be twice as dense and could be twice as tall as originally anticipated.

    The seven-member commission voted 5-1, with one member absent, to recommend approval of the latest Banks plans.

    The plans put the development at 2.8 million square feet with buildings up to 30 stories tall. The previous riverfront master plan, adopted in 2000, called for a maximum of 1.4 million square feet and capped building heights at 16 stories.


    Planning Commission member John Schneider cast the lone dissenting vote, because of the new height allowances. Commission members noted concerns that tall buildings could block views downtown, create an unfriendly canyon-like appearance on the riverfront and interfere with height restrictions in the Bengals' lease with the county.

    • Comment on the updated plan for The Banks
    • See updated plan for The Banks
    • Special Section: The Banks


    "We only have four 30-or-more-story buildings in our entire downtown," Schneider said. "I think I'll have to regretfully vote no. This is a pretty remarkable change in the status quo. I'd just have to be convinced that 30 stories is the way to go."

    The Banks' Atlanta-based developers, Carter Real Estate and the Harold Dawson Co., said they don't have any plans to build skyscrapers on the riverfront. They just want flexibility so that if a major corporation wants to build its headquarters there they can work to accommodate it, said Bailey Pope of the Dawson Co.

    "We're creating a window of opportunity for a Fortune 500 company to join the riverfront," he said.

    City Manager Milton Dohoney agreed with the 30-story flexibility. "I think the spirit of the (increased height) request is for the city to be attractive for outside investors," he said.

    He noted that this plan is just an outline. The Planning Commission still will be required to sign off on final details, including building heights on each block, as the development moves forward. Developers plan to begin construction by April.

    Developers said the dramatic changes in the new plans "allow us to push the vision a little further," Pope said. The companies believe there is a larger demand for space on the Cincinnati's riverfront - especially for apartments and condominiums - than earlier anticipated.

    The maximum amount of retail space has increased from 300,000 square feet to 400,000 square feet. Residential space increased from 745,000 square feet to 1.8 million square feet. Office space increased from 200,000 square feet to 1 million square feet. Hotel space increased from 200,000 square feet to 400,000 square feet. Total space, though, is capped at 2.8 million square feet.

    The new Banks plan will move forward to the Cincinnati City Council and Hamilton County Commission. Both governments must approve the plans. They are expected to vote by Sept. 12.
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  5. #34
    The Lineups stink. KronoRed's Avatar
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    Re: Banks project to be open by end of 2009

    I certainly hope they avoid mondo skyscrapers, walling off the river is not a good plan
    Go Gators!

  6. #35
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    Re: Banks project to be open by end of 2009

    Talk about killing the Banks Project. Ouch! Exactly the type of development they don't want on the river would be a big corporate tower, if the goal is to make it an inviting nighttime destination. Nothing says "party time" like a corporate office tower that empties out at 5 pm.
    Burn down the disco. Hang the blessed DJ. Because the music that he constantly plays, it says nothing to me about my life.

  7. #36
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    Re: Banks project to be open by end of 2009

    Yep, empties out and everyone heads over to Newport for the fun
    Go Gators!

  8. #37
    Mon chou Choo vaticanplum's Avatar
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    Re: Banks project to be open by end of 2009

    Quote Originally Posted by KronoRed View Post
    Yep, empties out and everyone heads over to Newport for the fun
    No, not if there are viable things to do on the same block as their place of employment. The added business is not at the expense of the entertainment being planned -- just in addition to it. Building up, basically.

    I believe that the 30-story buildings will be required to sit farther back from the river, not right on the edge. However, I don't think that will ultimately go through. A lot of people involved in this project are pretty determined that the great majority of the buildings remain low. They may cap it higher than 16 stories, but i don't know about 30.
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  9. #38
    The Lineups stink. KronoRed's Avatar
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    Re: Banks project to be open by end of 2009

    Quote Originally Posted by vaticanplum View Post
    No, not if there are viable things to do on the same block as their place of employment. The added business is not at the expense of the entertainment being planned -- just in addition to it. Building up, basically.
    Maybe, but they increased the office space from 200k square feet to a million, considering there isn't really an office space shortage in the downtown area I'm concerned that this plan will continue to be altered till it's a few bars, a hotel and a bunch of sky towers.
    Go Gators!

  10. #39
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    Re: Banks project to be open by end of 2009

    Quote Originally Posted by KronoRed View Post
    Maybe, but they increased the office space from 200k square feet to a million, considering there isn't really an office space shortage in the downtown area I'm concerned that this plan will continue to be altered till it's a few bars, a hotel and a bunch of sky towers.
    The big reason for that is flexibility in case a large corporation wishes to move its headquarters to Cincinnati, namely the Banks. If it comes down to getting another large corporation in the city I don't want a zoning limit to stop them. They wont build the extra floors unless necessary, the planning commision wont let them (all the individual buildings still must be approved before construction). Chances are that the buildings would be nowhere near that height.
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  11. #40
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    Re: Banks project to be open by end of 2009

    Quote Originally Posted by DoogMinAmo View Post
    The big reason for that is flexibility in case a large corporation wishes to move its headquarters to Cincinnati, namely the Banks. If it comes down to getting another large corporation in the city I don't want a zoning limit to stop them. They wont build the extra floors unless necessary, the planning commision wont let them (all the individual buildings still must be approved before construction). Chances are that the buildings would be nowhere near that height.
    I think this is happening because it looks like the second phase of Queen City Square is a go. For those of you unfamiliar with the project, it will be the tallest tower in the city measuring over 660 feet.



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  12. #41
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    Re: Banks project to be open by end of 2009

    Quote Originally Posted by DoogMinAmo View Post
    The big reason for that is flexibility in case a large corporation wishes to move its headquarters to Cincinnati, namely the Banks. If it comes down to getting another large corporation in the city I don't want a zoning limit to stop them. They wont build the extra floors unless necessary, the planning commision wont let them (all the individual buildings still must be approved before construction). Chances are that the buildings would be nowhere near that height.
    Trouble with that logic is that it seems to me that the trend is that most companies now are fleeing the big cities and setting up shop in the suburbs, where they can have greater flexibility and pay less money in rent.
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    Re: Banks project to be open by end of 2009

    Quote Originally Posted by Caveat Emperor View Post
    Trouble with that logic is that it seems to me that the trend is that most companies now are fleeing the big cities and setting up shop in the suburbs, where they can have greater flexibility and pay less money in rent.
    I see the same problem. I would say that the problem with a Fortune 500 company locating its headquarters in the Banks project from the company's view is that not only is rent and property cheaper in the suburbs cheaper, but there is also plenty of land to expand. For a large company to locate its HQ in the Banks, it has to bet on zero growth.

    Personally, I think better targets for the Banks project are to encourage a larger number of small and medium-sized professional firms (accounting, advertising, marketing, IT consulting and law firms as examples). They tend to have all the features of businesses that will attract residents and money to a mixed commercial-residential-entertainment area. They've got plenty of young professionals who would have a greater desire to live closer to lively neighborhoods, they've got client-based businesses that rely on longer working hours and business dinners and entertainment, and if a tenant moves out, you aren't left with a big empty building.

    Doog, you're the resident expert on real estate development. Is this desire for flexibility an honest response to interest from Fortune 500 companies? The concern I have is that the desire for flexibility in the development comes from a failure of the parties driving the Banks project to maintain the momentum of the project, resulting in the loss of potential tenants who have decided to move on with other options rather than wait for the project to get off the ground.
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    Re: Banks project to be open by end of 2009

    Quote Originally Posted by Yachtzee View Post
    I see the same problem. I would say that the problem with a Fortune 500 company locating its headquarters in the Banks project from the company's view is that not only is rent and property cheaper in the suburbs cheaper, but there is also plenty of land to expand. For a large company to locate its HQ in the Banks, it has to bet on zero growth.

    Personally, I think better targets for the Banks project are to encourage a larger number of small and medium-sized professional firms (accounting, advertising, marketing, IT consulting and law firms as examples). They tend to have all the features of businesses that will attract residents and money to a mixed commercial-residential-entertainment area. They've got plenty of young professionals who would have a greater desire to live closer to lively neighborhoods, they've got client-based businesses that rely on longer working hours and business dinners and entertainment, and if a tenant moves out, you aren't left with a big empty building.

    Doog, you're the resident expert on real estate development. Is this desire for flexibility an honest response to interest from Fortune 500 companies? The concern I have is that the desire for flexibility in the development comes from a failure of the parties driving the Banks project to maintain the momentum of the project, resulting in the loss of potential tenants who have decided to move on with other options rather than wait for the project to get off the ground.
    Thanks for the complement, although I am far from such. I just am a concerned citizen with some knowledge of the field and an ear to the railroad tracks.

    Some points regarding you flexibility concerns:

    1. In new mixed use developments, office space can often be the last space to achieve a demand. (Residential and retail would obviously be the first.) I would imagine this would especially be the case in an urban setting where so many other options, way cheaper ones than prime riverfront class A at that, available to businesses considering the area.

    2. With a project divided into phases like the Banks is, it can both give the developer an opportunity to gauge interest and adjust the future portions of development accordingly, and/or it gives the developer/ leasing agents valuable demographic information to sell the possibilty and potential of the future phases to prospective clients.

    3. With the incredible recent growth spurt and reinvestment in downtown, I would think suburban office centers/parks should get concerned and quick, because they can only hope to immitate the density,walkability, amenities and glamour of an urban location. Not to mention a recent study found Cincinnati as the 7th most economical city int he country for a corporate headquarters:
    http://news.enquirer.com/apps/pbcs.d...40025/1076/BIZ
    And it would have been even higher if it hadnt been for Delta.

    4. It is very early in the process to be concerned over marketed tenants, and especially over possible lost tenants. Tenants signed to a space will happen as construction starts, and will take off when phase I is completed. Until then, it is a giant ploy between prospective tenants and landlords for good deals, full buildings, and public hype.

    My optimism for this project is unhindered by this latest news, if not increase. Although I like many others here would prefer that the scale of the development be closer to the 10-15 story range than 25+, but for sheer aesthetic purposes mostly, the fact that they are discussing future flexibility and hammering out an actual development agreement is huge, it means both parties want it to be done.

    Paint,

    The Queen City Tower has been on the drawing board for quite some time, and Western Southern has been trying to market it to tenants in the city, in the burbs, and in other cities to help take it off. The word is that the first tower which has already been built, the ten story tower to the right in your rendering, with its many modern amenities has sparked demand for new class A office space, and WS is moving up the timetable to get the taller tower started. However, it wont happen until it is at least 50% pre leased.

    Some fun facts about QST:

    It is designed by HOK with both modern and art deco exterioir elements to recapture some of the city's past glory; the bonnet on top is unoccupiable so the tallest floor would still be below Carew Tower even though the building as a whole is taller; it would represent the first building larger than 15 stories to be constructed in downtown since, I believe, 1992.
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  15. #44
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    Re: Banks project to be open by end of 2009

    Quote Originally Posted by Caveat Emperor View Post
    Trouble with that logic is that it seems to me that the trend is that most companies now are fleeing the big cities and setting up shop in the suburbs, where they can have greater flexibility and pay less money in rent.
    Yes it is cheaper, but two recent trends, urban revitalization and corporate headquarter relocation to midwestern cities, present counter arguements.

    I would like to reiterate, there is no insider information or high likelihood here, it is just openly discussed flexibility in case the recently unimagineable happens.
    "I'm a Cucumber, I'm a cucumber. I'm a cucumber, I'm a cucumber. I'm a cucumber, I'm a cucumber. Please don't send me to the pickle farm, bum." - Brak

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  16. #45
    Mon chou Choo vaticanplum's Avatar
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    Re: Banks project to be open by end of 2009

    What exactly are the cross streets of that Queen City Tower? It looks quite far east. I drive Eastern Avenue to work every day, and a few weeks ago, all of a sudden, whatever was just east of the Midland building was razed practically overnight -- so fast that I, embarrassingly, cannot remember whether it was a building or a small parking lot there before. Is that where this tower is due to go? But I don't think the Western Southern building is that far east, is it?

    Pretty building; thanks for the tidbits on its design, Doog.

    On a side note, hey Doog, current expert, can you tell me what was originally housed in the building on Fourth Street west of Vine that now has a TJ Maxx on the bottom? It's just south of the Carew Tower and has all of this incredible colored art deco fruit carved into the facade. Nobody has been able to tell me what that used to be; in fact most people I've asked haven't even noticed it (the carving starts on the second floor).
    Last edited by vaticanplum; 08-20-2007 at 07:28 PM.
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