CINCINNATI - The Cincinnati Center City Development Corp. and city of Cincinnati on Thursday unveiled Bakery Lofts, the latest project in the ongoing effort to revitalize historic Over-the-Rhine.
The $2.45 million development has nine for-sale residential units in a 158-year-old building on the 1400 block of Race Street. They range in price from $155,000 to $330,000. The city of Cincinnati contributed $700,000 to the project.
Eight of the Bakery Lofts units already are sold. Taste of Belgium owner Jean-Francois Flechet bought a townhome in the building that features a deck with views of Over-the-Rhine and the downtown skyline.
Flechet was at Thursday's ceremonial ribbon-cutting for the project, attended by Mayor Mark Mallory, several members of Cincinnati City Council and 3CDC officials. His new – still empty – home also was packed with media and other neighborhood developers and boosters.
"That's quite a house-warming party," Flechet joked.
Flechet noted that he operates his Taste of Belgium waffle stand in Findlay Market and the Taste of Belgium Bistro on Vine Street, and his new home is between both those locations.
"I'm always just a step away from work," he said.
It's also close to Washington Park, which he said will be great for him, his wife and their 18-month-old son. Bakery Lofts was developed by Martha Dorff's Urbanis LLC, and Dorff's Schickel Design served as the architect.
Already 3CDC and the city of Cincinnati have invested more than $226 million in Over-the-Rhine. Of the 186 condominiums developed for 3CDC to date, 184 have sold. All 68 apartments in the neighborhood under 3CDC's purview are leased with waiting lists. And 95 percent of the 91,000 square feet of commercial development that 3CDC has overseen is leased.
Bakery Lofts is the first project to open in 3CDC's fifth phase of work in the historic neighborhood. There are six more Phase V projects in the works for a total of nearly $30 million in investment.
At the same time, 3CDC is overseeing development of Mercer Commons, the $62 million mixed-use project that encompasses 19 buildings and 26 vacant parcels on nearly 2.7 acres between East 13th and 14th streets bordered by Vine and Walnut streets.
That project will include 359 parking spaces, 96 market-rate apartments, 30 affordable apartments, 28 condominiums and 17,600 square feet of commercial space.
Even with all that activity, Munitz said there is much more to be done.
"We're doing work in what's only about a fourth of Over-the-Rhine," said Chad Munitz, 3CDC's executive vice president for development and operations. "Our mission is the whole neighborhood."
The next building to be completed in 3CDC's Phase V will be the Hummel Building at 1401 Elm St. near Music Hall, Munitz said. That's being developed by Grandin Properties. It has four for-sale units and 1,880 square feet of commercial space. Those homes will range in price from $250,000 to $350,000.
"We'll have a lot of ribbon cuttings in the next few months," Munitz said. "We can't rest on our laurels."
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