Liberty Center project signed by Butler, Liberty Township officials

CINCINNATI - Butler County Commissioners and Liberty Township trustees on Thursday approved a master development agreement that will enable a fall groundbreaking of a $325 million mixed-use development that could compete with Kenwood as the region’s strongest retail attraction.

The deal follows months of negotiations on how to pay for more than $50 million in roads, sewers, garages and bike paths that will be part of the 100-acre project. The master development agreement calls for Butler County to cover $20 million in infrastructure costs, developers another $17 million. Liberty Township's cost is $5 million, while $18 million would come from a "New Community Authority," which is a taxing district that will impose property assessment fees on tenants and a half-cent user fee, similar to a sales tax, on shoppers.

Plans call for a 200,000-square-foot Dillard’s department store and a Cobb Theatres’ CineBistro dine-in movie theater as the only announced tenants. Up to 370,000 square feet in specialty retail, a 150-room hotel and a 100,000 square foot office building are also part of the project.

Columbus developer Steiner + Associates announced two new development partners for the project at the signing Wednesday. Daimler Group of Columbus will be the project's office developer. It is one of the most active developers in central Ohio, with more than 7 million square feet in its portfolio. Raymond Management Co. of Wisconsin, a Marriott-affiliated hotel developer, will be the hotel partner. Towne Properties LLC was previously announced as the project’s residential housing partner.

A site tour of the planned project can be found here :

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